Nucleic acids and chromatin
Nucleic acids and chromatin

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Ultraviolet irradiation

The nucleic acid bases absorb electromagnetic radiation in the ultraviolet (UV) region of the spectrum. The major photoproducts in DNA, generated upon exposure to UVB light, are structures called pyrimidine dimers which are formed from two adjacent pyrimidine bases, as shown in Table 3d. The formation of such dimers introduces a substantial amount of strain into the structure of DNA. This damage is detected and the dimer repaired by specialist repair machinery, However, if pyrimidine dimers are left unrepaired, they can block replication.

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