Functions of DNA Polymerases a, fl, and y in Neurons during Development


The rapid rise of interest recently in the DNA polymerases of vertebrate and especially of mam-malian cells has led to a good knowledge of the chemical, physical, and catalytic properties of three DNA polymerases, named a, fl, and y (Bollum 1975; Weissbach 1977; Falaschi and Spadari 1978). In con-trast, identification of their respective functions has lagged behind. This is due to the lack of eukaryotic cell mutants defective in DNA replication. Contrary to prokaryotes (Kornberg 1974), where conditional mut-ants have allowed a direct correlation between func-tional deficiency and specific action of the DNA polymerases, the experimental strategy with eukaryotes has been to compare individual evels of DNA polymerase activities in dividing and restin

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