Along with an international team of scientists, San Francisco State mathematician Mariel Vazquez has published a mathematical analysis of how the chromosomal rings of a replicating E. coli cell are unlinked by recombination enzymes.
Vazquez, who says that the insights provided by studies like the one in which she participated may contribute to the design of better antibacterial drugs, stresses the significance of DNA topology:
It is important for people to know that DNA is not just a sequence of letters. It is a very long molecule that can adopt a complex three-dimensional structure when packaged inside a cell nucleus.
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