What is the DNA and the protein it wraps around called together?

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hart379's profile pic

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Chromatin consists of DNA and proteins.  The protein that is coiled around the DNA in chromatin is called histone.  When the chromatin condenses, it is referred to as chromosomes.  The proteins help package the DNA into the units known as chromosomes.  Histone acts as a spool to which DNA can wrap itself around which helps condense the DNA.  DNA condenses during prophase of the cell cycle.  It is very important for DNA to be able to condense itself because of the thousands of bases located in a single strand of DNA.  Without histones, DNA would take up too much space in the cell of an organism. 

jcubs007's profile pic

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histones are strongly alkaline proteins found in eukaryotic cell nuclei, which package and order the DNA into structural units called nucleosomes. They are the chief protein components of chromatin, act as spools around which DNA winds, and play a role in gene regulation. Without histones, the unwound DNA in chromosomes would be very long.

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