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Biology > Cell the Unit of Life > DNA Replication in Prokaryotes & Eukaryotes
Cell the Unit of Life

DNA Replication in Prokaryotes & Eukaryotes

DNA Replication in Prokaryotes

DNA replication in prokaryotes and eukaryotes happens before the division of cells. It helps in making sure that both the cells get an exact copy of the genetic material of their parents.

The DNA replication in prokaryotes and eukaryotes has a lot of similarities as well as differences. It depends on the sizes and details of the molecules. As well as the time for completion of the method.

Differences Between Eukaryotic and Prokaryotic Cells

The prokaryotic cells have a very simple structure. They do not have any nucleus and organelles. They only have a very small amount of DNA. That is in the form of the single and circular genes.

On the other hand, eukaryotic cells contain a nucleus, numerous organelles and more DNA. That is arranged in multiple and linear genes.

dna replication in prokaryotes

Steps of DNA Replication in Prokaryotes & Eukaryotes

The replication of DNA starts at a certain point on the molecule of DNA. It is the source of the replication. The enzymes make their constituents available for duplication. They do so by unwinding their double helix at the source.

After that, each strand of the helix splits from the other. This reveals the now unpaired bases to work as templates for new strands.

As a primer, a small segment of RNA – ribonucleic acid is added. Then, new nucleotide bases that match the unpaired bases can be gathered. In order to create two daughter strands next to every parent strand.

The enzymes are DNA polymerases then complete this. After the process, it results in the formation of two DNA molecules. They are similar to each other as well as their parent molecule.

Similarities between Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic DNA Replication

As we all know the steps for duplication of DNA are almost similar throughout all organisms. It includes prokaryotic and eukaryotic.

The enzyme named DNA helicase then gets the unwinding the DNA. Further, enzymes named polymerases coordinate the production of new DNA strands.

Similarly, both these organisms also follow the pattern of semi-conservative replication. Over here, the individual strands of DNA make an important and lagging strand by manufacturing in different directions.

Further, the small DNA fragments named Okazaki fragments make these lagging strands by combining together. Above all, both of these organisms also start the new DNA strands with a small primer of RNA.

Differences between Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic DNA Replication

When we talk about the differences between DNA replication in prokaryotes, we notice how it mainly connects to differences in size and detail of the DNA and cells of these organisms.

For instance, the average eukaryotic cell has 25 times more DNA than that of the other cell.

Eukaryotic cells have many points of origin. They use unidirectional replication within the nucleus of the cell. On the other hand, in the other cells, there is only a single point.

Further, replication happens in two contrasting directions at the same time. Also, it happens in the cytoplasm of the cell.

Besides that, eukaryotes have four or more types of polymerases. Whereas the other cells have only one or two types.

Further, the duplication way in prokaryotic cells takes place much faster than in the other. Moreover, they also have a different way of copying the telomeres at the ends of their genes.

On the contrary, prokaryotes have no ends to synthesize with their circular genes. Last but not least, the short replication in prokaryotes happens constantly. But the other cells only get DNA replication through the S-phase of the cell cycle.

Solved Question for You

Q1– Which of these is not in the prokaryotic cell?

A. Nucleus
B. Cytoplasm
C. Plasma membrane
D. Ribosome

A1– The correct answer is option A.

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