The Replication of Kinetoplast DNA

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  • Department of Physiological Chemistry, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, 725 N. Wolfe Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21205

Kinetoplast DNA is the mitochondrial DNA of trypanosomatids. This DNA consists primarily of thousands of small minicircles which are linked together to form a giant network. Replication of this DNA involves release of individual minicircles from the network to form free minicircles. The free minicircles then replicate and the two progeny are reattached to the network. When all minicircles within the network have replicated, the double-sized network divides to form two progeny structures which are each identical to the parent network.