Unresolvable Endings--Defective Telomeres and Failed Separation

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Science  07 Mar 1997:
Vol. 275, Issue 5305, pp. 1441
DOI: 10.1126/science.275.5305.1441a

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Telomeres, usually consisting of repetitive sequences and proteins bound to them, form the ends of all chromosomes, where they protect against unwanted shortening during DNA replication and cell division. The Perspective by Hawley discusses two reports, one by Kirk et al. (p. 1478) of this week's issue and the other in press at Genes and Development, that point to a surprising new function for telomeres in the separation of the ends of the chromosomes during cell division.