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Current Genetics

Irina A Yushenova, Irina R Arkhipova
Cellular reverse transcriptase-related (rvt) genes represent a novel class of reverse transcriptases (RTs), which are only distantly related to RTs of retrotransposons and retroviruses, but, similarly to telomerase RTs, are immobilized in the genome as single-copy genes. They have been preserved by natural selection throughout the evolutionary history of large taxonomic groups, including most fungi, a few plants and invertebrates, and even certain bacteria, being the only RTs present across different domains of life...
May 14, 2018: Current Genetics
Delphine Albrecht, Hans C Hürlimann, Johanna Ceschin, Christelle Saint-Marc, Benoît Pinson, Bertrand Daignan-Fornier
AICAR is the precursor of ZMP, a metabolite with antiproliferative properties in yeast and human. We aim at understanding how AICAR (and its active form ZMP) affects essential cellular processes. In this work, we found that ZMP accumulation is synthetic lethal with a hypomorphic allele of the ubiquitin-activating enzyme Uba1. A search for gene-dosage suppressors revealed that ubiquitin overexpression was sufficient to restore growth of the uba1 mutant upon AICAR treatment, suggesting that the ubiquitin pool is critical for cells to cope with AICAR...
May 2, 2018: Current Genetics
A Vizoso-Vázquez, A Barreiro-Alonso, M I González-Siso, E Rodríguez-Belmonte, M Lamas-Maceiras, M E Cerdán
The number of ribosomes and their activity need to be highly regulated because their function is crucial for the cell. Ribosome biogenesis is necessary for cell growth and proliferation in accordance with nutrient availability and other external and intracellular signals. High-mobility group B (HMGB) proteins are conserved from yeasts to human and are decisive in cellular fate. These proteins play critical functions, from the maintenance of chromatin structure, DNA repair, or transcriptional regulation, to facilitation of ribosome biogenesis...
April 30, 2018: Current Genetics
Karthik Dhatchinamoorthy, Mark Mattingly, Jennifer L Gerton
Successful proliferation and function of an organism relies on the equal segregation of its genetic material during cell division. Duplicate sister chromatids need to accurately segregate at mitosis. Precise segregation depends on a multicomplex protein structure called the kinetochore. The kinetochore assembles at centromeres and attaches to microtubules to segregate sister chromatids. Even though the kinetochore structure was first observed nearly a century ago, many aspects of the regulation, function and assembly of this large 100 + protein structure remain to be determined...
April 27, 2018: Current Genetics
Xiaolian Wang, Xin Xu, Yingmei Liang, Yonglin Wang, Chengming Tian
The Rho GTPase Cdc42 is conserved in fungi and plays a key role in regulating polarity establishment, morphogenesis and differentiation. In this study, we identified an ortholog of Cdc42, CgCdc42, and functionally characterized it to determine the role of Cdc42 in the development and pathogenicity of Colletotrichum gloeosporioides, a causal agent of poplar anthracnose. Targeted deletion of CgCdc42 resulted in reduced vegetative growth and dramatic morphological defects, including the formation of elongated conidia and abnormally shaped appressoria...
April 26, 2018: Current Genetics
Sarah S Henrikus, Antoine M van Oijen, Andrew Robinson
In many bacterial species, DNA damage triggers the SOS response; a pathway that regulates the production of DNA repair and damage tolerance proteins, including error-prone DNA polymerases. These specialised polymerases are capable of bypassing lesions in the template DNA, a process known as translesion synthesis (TLS). Specificity for lesion types varies considerably between the different types of TLS polymerases. TLS polymerases are mainly described as working in the context of replisomes that are stalled at lesions or in lesion-containing gaps left behind the replisome...
April 26, 2018: Current Genetics
George Maxwell Otto, Gloria Ann Brar
The development of techniques for measuring gene expression globally has greatly expanded our understanding of gene regulatory mechanisms in depth and scale. We can now quantify every intermediate and transition in the canonical pathway of gene expression-from DNA to mRNA to protein-genome-wide. Employing such measurements in parallel can produce rich datasets, but extracting the most information requires careful experimental design and analysis. Here, we argue for the value of genome-wide studies that measure multiple outputs of gene expression over many timepoints during the course of a natural developmental process...
April 19, 2018: Current Genetics
Xuli Gao, Ju Zhang, Chaoni Song, Kangyi Yuan, Jianhua Wang, Qiaojun Jin, Jin-Rong Xu
Prp31 is one of the key tri-snRNP components essential for pre-mRNA splicing although its exact molecular function is not well studied. In a previous study, suppressor mutations were identified in the PRP31 ortholog in two spontaneous suppressors of Fgprp4 mutant deleted of the only kinase of the spliceosome in Fusarium graminearum. To further characterize the function of FgPrp31 and its relationship with FgPrp4 kinase, in this study we identified additional suppressor mutations in FgPrp31 and determined the suppressive effects of selected mutations...
April 18, 2018: Current Genetics
Kazunori Tomita
Telomerase, the enzyme that replenishes telomeres, is essential for most eukaryotes to maintain their generations. Telomere length homeostasis is achieved via a balance between telomere lengthening by telomerase, and erosion over successive cell divisions. Impaired telomerase regulation leads to shortened telomeres and can cause defects in tissue maintenance. Telomeric DNA is composed of a repetitive sequence, which recruits the protective protein complex, shelterin. Shelterin, together with chromatin remodelling proteins, shapes the heterochromatic structure at the telomere and protects chromosome ends...
April 16, 2018: Current Genetics
Kana Ishikawa, Emi Kunitake, Tomomi Kawase, Motoki Atsumi, Yuji Noguchi, Shuhei Ishikawa, Masahiro Ogawa, Yasuji Koyama, Makoto Kimura, Kyoko Kanamaru, Masashi Kato, Tetsuo Kobayashi
The paralogous transcription factors AraR and XlnR in Aspergillus regulate genes that are involved in degradation of cellulose and hemicellulose and catabolism of pentose. AraR and XlnR target the same genes for pentose catabolism but target different genes encoding enzymes for polysaccharide degradation. To uncover the relationship between these paralogous transcription factors, we examined their contribution to regulation of the PCP genes and compared their preferred recognition sequences. Both AraR and XlnR are involved in induction of all the pentose catabolic genes in A...
April 13, 2018: Current Genetics
Gaurav Barve, Priyadarshini Sanyal, Ravi Manjithaya
Autophagy is a vital conserved recycling process where eukaryotic cells remove unwanted proteins and organelles via lysosomal degradation and in turn, generate nutrients for the cells. The special feature of autophagy process is the formation of double-membrane vesicles called autophagosomes that engulf cellular cargo and deliver them to the vacuole or lysosomes for degradation. Inspite of more than 40 AuTophaGy (ATG) proteins and several organelles as known membrane source, autophagosome biogenesis is not entirely understood...
April 12, 2018: Current Genetics
Gunjan Mehta, Guhan Kaliyaperumal Anbalagan, Akhilendra Pratap Bharati, Purna Gadre, Santanu Kumar Ghosh
Meiosis is a specialized cell division process by which haploid gametes are produced from a diploid mother cell. Reductional chromosome segregation during meiosis I (MI) is achieved by two unique and conserved events: centromeric cohesin protection (CCP) and sister kinetochore mono-orientation (SKM). In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a meiosis-specific protein Spo13 plays a role in both these centromere-specific events. Despite genome-wide association of Spo13, we failed to detect its function in global processes such as cohesin loading, cohesion establishment and homologs pairing...
April 11, 2018: Current Genetics
Maria Sardi, Audrey P Gasch
Proper cell function depends on networks of proteins that interact physically and functionally to carry out physiological processes. Thus, it seems logical that the impact of sequence variation in one protein could be significantly influenced by genetic variants at other loci in a genome. Nonetheless, the importance of such genetic interactions, known as epistasis, in explaining phenotypic variation remains a matter of debate in genetics. Recent work from our lab revealed that genes implicated from an association study of toxin tolerance in Saccharomyces cerevisiae show extensive interactions with the genetic background: most implicated genes, regardless of allele, are important for toxin tolerance in only one of two tested strains...
April 11, 2018: Current Genetics
Sarah M Mangiameli, Julie A Cass, Houra Merrikh, Paul A Wiggins
DNA replication is essential to cellular proliferation. The cellular-scale organization of the replication machinery (replisome) and the replicating chromosome has remained controversial. Two competing models describe the replication process: In the track model, the replisomes translocate along the DNA like a train on a track. Alternately, in the factory model, the replisomes form a stationary complex through which the DNA is pulled. We summarize the evidence for each model and discuss a number of confounding aspects that complicate interpretation of the observations...
April 9, 2018: Current Genetics
Inga Soreanu, Adi Hendler, Danielle Dahan, Daniel Dovrat, Amir Aharoni
The budding yeast is currently one of the major model organisms for the study of a wide variety of biological processes. Genetic manipulation of yeast involves the extensive usage of selectable markers that can lead to undesired effects. Thus, marker-free genetic manipulation in yeast is highly desirable for gene/promoter replacement and various other applications. Here we combine the power of selectable markers followed by CRISPR/CAS9 genome editing for common genetic manipulations in yeast in a marker-free manner...
April 6, 2018: Current Genetics
Jennifer M O Mason, Michael J McEachern
Telomeres serve as protective caps that help the cell differentiate between the naturally occurring ends of chromosomes and double-stranded breaks. When telomere capping function becomes compromised, chromosome ends are subjected to elevated rates of chromosome alterations. These effects can be particularly dramatic in the telomere-adjacent subtelomeric region. While the catastrophic impact of severe telomere dysfunction on genome stability has been well documented, the adaptive telomere failure hypothesis considers an alternative role telomere dysfunction may play in adaptive evolution...
March 27, 2018: Current Genetics
Carmina Angelica Perez-Romero, Maxime Lalonde, Pascal Chartrand, Emilio Cusanelli
Telomeres are maintained in a heterochromatic state that represses transcription of subtelomeric genes, a phenomenon known as telomere position effect. Nevertheless, telomeric DNA is actively transcribed, leading to the synthesis of telomeric repeat-containing noncoding RNA or TERRA. This nuclear noncoding RNA has been proposed to play important roles at telomeres, regulating their silencing, capping, repair and elongation by telomerase. In the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, TERRA accumulation is repressed by telomeric silencing and the Rat1 exonuclease...
March 22, 2018: Current Genetics
Joana Rodrigues, David Lydall
Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a commonly used model organism for understanding eukaryotic gene function. However, the close proximity between yeast genes can complicate the interpretation of yeast genetic data, particularly high-throughput data. In this study, we examined the interplay between genes encoding components of the PAF1 complex and VPS36, the gene located next to CDC73 on chromosome XII. The PAF1 complex (Cdc73, Paf1, Ctr9, Leo1, and Rtf1, in yeast) affects RNA levels by affecting transcription, histone modifications, and post-transcriptional RNA processing...
March 22, 2018: Current Genetics
Motohiro Tani, Kouichi Funato
Life is dependent on the protection of cellular functions from various stresses. Sphingolipids are essential biomembrane components in eukaryotic organisms, which are exposed to risks that may disrupt sphingolipid metabolism, threatening their lives. Defects of the sphingolipid biosynthesis pathway cause profound defects of various cellular functions and ultimately cell death. Therefore, cells are equipped with defense response mechanisms against aberrant metabolism of sphingolipids, the most characterized one being the target of rapamycin complex 2-mediated regulation of sphingolipid biosynthesis in budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae...
March 19, 2018: Current Genetics
Simon David Brown, Olga Dorota Jarosinska, Alexander Lorenz
Hop1 is a component of the meiosis-specific chromosome axis and belongs to the evolutionarily conserved family of HORMA domain proteins. Hop1 and its orthologs in higher eukaryotes are a major factor in promoting double-strand DNA break formation and inter-homolog recombination. In budding yeast and mammals, they are also involved in a meiotic checkpoint kinase cascade monitoring the completion of double-strand DNA break repair. We used the fission yeast, Schizosaccharomyces pombe, which lacks a canonical synaptonemal complex to test whether Hop1 has a role beyond supporting the generation of double-strand DNA breaks and facilitating inter-homolog recombination events...
March 17, 2018: Current Genetics
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