RNA interference is required for normal centromere function infission yeast
Purchase on Springer.com
$39.95 / €34.95 / £29.95*
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.
In plants, animals and fungi, active centromeres are associated with arrays of repetitive DNA sequences. The outer repeats at fission yeast (Schizosaccharomyces pombe) centromeres are heterochromatic and are required for the assembly of an active centromere. Components of the RNA interference (RNAi) machinery process transcripts derived from these repeats and mediate the formation of silent chromatin. A subfragment of the repeat (dg) is known to induce silencing of marker genes at euchromatic sites and is required for centromere formation. We show that the RNAi components, Argonaute (Ago1), Dicer (Dcr1) and RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (Rdp1), are required to maintain silencing, lysine 9 methylation of histone H3 and association of Swi6 via this dg ectopic silencer. Deletion of Ago1, Dcr1 or Rdp1 disrupts chromosome segregation leading to a high incidence of lagging chromosomes on late anaphase spindles and sensitivity to a microtubule poison. Analysis of dg transcription indicates that csp mutants, previously shown to abrogate centromere silencing and chromosome segregation, are also defective in the regulation of non-coding centromeric RNAs. In addition, histone H3 lysine 9 methylation at, and recruitment of Swi6 and cohesin to, centromeric repeats is disrupted in these mutants. Thus the formation of silent chromatin on dg repeats and the development of a fully functional centromere is dependent on RNAi.
- Allshire RC (1996) Transcriptional silencing in fission yeast: A manifestation of higher order chromosome structure and functions. In: Russo E, Martienssen R, eds. Epigenetic Mechanisms of Gene Regulation. New York, USA: CSHL Press, pp 443-466.
- Allshire RC, Nimmo ER, Ekwall K, Javerzat J-P, Cranston G (1995) Mutations derepressing silent centromeric domains in fission yeast disrupt chromosome segregation. Genes Dev 9: 218-233.
- Ayoub N, Goldshmidt I, Lyakhovetsky R, Cohen A (2000) A fission yeast repression element cooperates with centromere-like sequences and defines a mat silent domain boundary. Genetics 156: 983-994.
- Bannister AJ, Zegerman P, Partridge JF et al. (2001) Selective recognition of methylated lysine 9 on histone H3 by the HP1 chromo domain. Nature 410: 120-124.
- Bernard P, Allshire RC (2002) Centromeres become unstuck without heterochromatin. Trends Cell Biol 12: 419-424.
- Bernard P, Maure JF, Partridge JF, Genier S, Javerzat J-P, Allshire RC (2001) Requirement of heterochromatin for cohesion at centromeres. Science 294: 2539-2542.
- Ekwall K, Javerzat JP, Lorentz A, Schmidt H, Cranston G, Allshire RC (1995) The chromodomain protein Swi6: a key component at fission yeast centromeres. Science 269: 1429-1431.
- RNA interference is required for normal centromere function infission yeast
Volume 11, Issue 2 , pp 137-146
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Kluwer Academic Publishers
- Additional Links
- chromosome segregation
- Schizosaccharomyces pombe
- Industry Sectors
- Author Affiliations
- 1. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Bungtown Road, New York, 11724, USA
- 2. The Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology, University of Edinburgh, Kings′ Buildings, ICMB Swann 6.34, Edinburgh, EH9 3JR, UK