Reiji Okazaki (岡崎 令治 Okazaki Reiji , October 8, 1930 – August 1, 1975) was a Japanese molecular biologist known for his research in DNA replication and especially for describing the role of so-called Okazaki fragments which he discovered working with his wife Tsuneko Okazaki in 1966.
Okazaki discovered the way in which the lagging strand of DNA is replicated via fragments   The experiments by his group used E. coli. After reacting E. coli with 3[H] Thymidine to synthesize DNA for only ten seconds, he placed the sample in a test tube of alkaline sucrose. The larger, heavier DNA flowed to the bottom of the test tube, while the smaller lighter DNA did not. When samples were taken from the bottom of the test tube, it was found that half were heavy and half were light, proving that half of the DNA was complete and half was in fragments. Then he took a sample of E.coli DNA that had been synthesized for an additional five seconds, and found all the activity now resulted in the larger molecular weight. Therefore, there were no longer any fragments. This proved that during the five second chase, the RNA primer was removed-using DNA Polymerase I- and the bases were joined together by DNA Ligase, leaving the new DNA fully mature and repaired.
|This article about a Japanese scientist is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|
- Mechanism of DNA chain growth. I. Possible discontinuity and unusual secondary structure of newly synthesized chains.Okazaki R, Okazaki T, Sakabe K, Sugimoto K, Sugino A. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1968 Feb;59(2):598-605. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/4967086
- Mechanism of DNA chain growth, II. Accumulation of newly synthesized short chains in E. coli infected with ligase-defective T4 phages. Sugimoto K, Okazaki T, Okazaki R.Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1968 Aug;60(4):1356-62.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/4299945
- Mechanism of DNA chain growth. 3. Equal annealing of T4 nascent short DNA chains with the separated complementary strands of the phage DNA. Sugimoto K, Okazaki T, Imae Y, Okazaki R. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1969. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/5260937
- Mechanism of DNA chain growth. IV. Direction of synthesis of T4 short DNA chains as revealed by exonucleolytic degradation.Okazaki T, Okazaki R.Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1969. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/4989398