Replication fork

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The Replication Fork is the site from which DNA is synthesised. As the new strands are formed from the parental strand as it unwinds, it forms a fork shape [1]. At a replication fork, both strands are synthesised in a 5' to 3' direction. The leading strand is synthesised continuously, whereas the lagging strand is synthesised in short pieces called Okazaki fragments[2].

The replication fork is asymmetrical because the DNA is replicated by Semiconservative_replication using DNA_polymerase. At the replication fork, Y shaped structure, DNA of both new daughter strands are formed. This is made possible by a multienzyme complex which contains DNA polymerase. [3]


  1. Berg J., Tymoczko J and Stryer L. (2012) Biochemistry, 7th edition, New York: WH Freeman.fckLRPage 853
  2. Stryer, Biochemistry 5th Edition, 760
  3. Bruce Alberts et al. Molecular Biology of the Cell, 5th edition, 2008, Garland Science, New York. Chapter 5 : DNA replication, Repair, and Recombination, page 266

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