New details about the biology of telomeres — “caps” of DNA that protect the tips of chromosomes and play key roles in a number of health conditions, including cancer, inflammation and aging — have been uncovered by a team of researchers.
The goal of the new study was to determine what happens to telomeres when they are damaged by oxidative stress. The researchers suspected that oxidative damage would render telomerase unable to do its job. “Much to our surprise, telomerase could lengthen telomeres with oxidative damage,” Dr. Opresko said. “In fact, the damage seems to promote telomere lengthening.” /…/ They found that telomerase was able to add a damaged DNA precursor molecule to the end of the telomere, but was then unable to add additional DNA molecules.
Read the full article.. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/11/161108111356.htm
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