Eukaryotic DNA replication is a highly dynamic and tightly regulated process. Replication involves several dozens of replication proteins, including the initiators ORC and Cdc6, replicative CMG helicase, DNA polymerase α-primase, leading-strand DNA polymerase ε, and lagging-strand DNA polymerase δ. These proteins work together in a spatially and temporally controlled manner to synthesize new DNA from the parental DNA templates. During DNA replication, epigenetic information imprinted on DNA and histone proteins is also copied to the daughter DNA to maintain the chromatin status. DNA methyltransferase 1 is primarily responsible for copying the parental DNA methylation pattern into the nascent DNA. Epigenetic information encoded in histones is transferred via a more complex and less well-understood process termed replication-couple nucleosome assembly. Here, we summarize the most recent structural and biochemical insights into DNA replication initiation, replication fork elongation, chromatin assembly and maintenance, and related regulatory mechanisms.

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