DNA metabolism in the slime mold Physarum polycephalum was studied by centrifugation in CsCl of lysates of cultures labeled with radioactive thymidine at various times in the cell cycle. During the G2 (premitotic) phase of the cell cycle, two components of the DNA are labeled. One component is lighter (buoyant density 1.686 g/cc) than the mean of the principal DNA (1.700 g/cc), and one is heavier (approximately 1.706 g/cc). The labeled light DNA was identified chemically by its denaturability, its susceptibility to DNase, and the recovery of its radioactivity in thymine. Cell fractionation studies showed that the heavy and the principal DNA components are located in the nucleus and that the light DNA is in the cytoplasm. The light DNA comprises approximately 10% of the DNA. About ⅓–½ of the light DNA is synthesized during the S period, and the remainder is synthesized throughout G2 (there is no G1 in Physarum). The light DNA is metabolically stable. A low, variable level of incorporation of radioactive thymidine into the principal, nuclear DNA component was observed during G2.

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