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Eukaryon

Class Year

2010

Keywords

telomerase reverse transcriptase enzyme, primordial germ cells, transgenic, epididymal spermatozoa, Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), pachytene, alternative pathway for telomere extension

Abstract

Telomeres, replicated by telomerase, protect the ends of chromosomes from degradation and fusions that normal DNA replication cannot avoid. The regeneration of telomeres in mammals occurs in several phases throughout spermatogenesis and embryogenesis. During sperm formation, telomerase activity resides primarily in the á6+SP stem cells, and is most active during this early undifferentiated state of development, yet reach a maximum length during the elongated spermatid phase. The drop in telomerase activity during spermatogenesis is achieved by a decrease in TERT expression. Telomeres undergo further lengthening during embryogenesis, especially between the morula and blastocyst stages of development, where telomeres reach a predefined length regardless of initial length.

Disclaimer

Eukaryon is published by students at Lake Forest College, who are solely responsible for its content. The views expressed in Eukaryon do not necessarily reflect those of the College. Articles published within Eukaryon should not be cited in bibliographies. Material contained herein should be treated as personal communication and should be cited as such only with the consent of the author.

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