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EQUINOX GRAPHICS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY EQUINOX GRAPHICS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
DNA replication. Animation showing the replication of DNA, the molecule that carries an organism's genome. DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) exists as a helix formed of two strands of sugar-phosphate groups (grey) linked by pairs of bases (coloured) attached to the strands. At left, the double helix is unzipped by the enzyme DNA helicase (pink) into two strands called a replication fork. Each strand is then replicated as complementary bases reattach and reform the double strand, passing through another enzyme called DNA polymerase (blue) at right. This replication is possible because each of the four bases (adenine, thymine, cytosine and guanine) can only bind to its complementary partner base. This allows a single strand of DNA to be used to recreate its complementary strand. This is the basis for all biological heredity.
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