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The human DNA molecule would be about 6ft if stretched out to a straight line.

I'm curious what the diameter of the DNA molecule normally is when it is "all scrunched up" or "bundled" up, inside the nucleus of a human cell. (I heard it was 30 billionths of an inch.)

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    $\begingroup$ Are you after the diameter of the double helix or the diameter of a chromosome? both are easily searchable. $\endgroup$
    – bob1
    Aug 22, 2023 at 8:15
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    $\begingroup$ We don't use inches in science. If you are a "student of biology" you need to get used to the metric system. If you need to convert to space shuttle disaster units, there are resources on the internet. $\endgroup$
    – David
    Aug 22, 2023 at 8:59
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    $\begingroup$ here measure it yourself, the scale bar is 1 um researchgate.net/figure/… $\endgroup$
    – John
    Aug 22, 2023 at 12:39
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    $\begingroup$ That's flying squirrels John. $\endgroup$ Sep 2, 2023 at 0:13
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    $\begingroup$ As phrased the question is a bit confusing. In the most literal sense the diameter of a DNA molecule doesn't change much. Also, there isn't much bare DNA in the nucleus. It's largely wrapped around little spools made of protein called nucleosomes. The chains of nucleosomes are wrapped together to form chromatin fibers which make up the chromosomes. The chromosomes pull together into multiple 3-d blobs in the nucleus. Is it the diameter of those blobs that you are looking for? $\endgroup$ Sep 2, 2023 at 0:44

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Based on this picture, Chromosomes range from 2 to 12 micro-meters μm.

1μm is nearly 1/25400's of an inch

The 10-base system is more popular for science, and inches are not standard for science, but if they were, your answer would be 3/25400's to 1/2540 range.

For reference, standard writing paper and standard copy paper is about 100 μm, 0.1mm, 1/254's.

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