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EMBO J. Nov 15, 1999; 18(22): 6448–6454.
PMCID: PMC1171707

Sum1 and Hst1 repress middle sporulation-specific gene expression during mitosis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

Abstract

Meiotic development in yeast is characterized by the sequential induction of temporally distinct classes of genes. Genes that are induced at the middle stages of the pathway share a promoter element, termed the middle sporulation element (MSE), which interacts with the Ndt80 transcriptional activator. We have found that a subclass of MSEs are strong repressor sites during mitosis. SUM1 and HST1, genes previously associated with transcriptional silencing, are required for MSE-mediated repression. Sum1 binds specifically in vitro to MSEs that function as strong repressor sites in vivo. Repression by Sum1 is gene specific and does not extend to neighboring genes. These results suggest that mechanisms used to silence large regions of chromatin may also be used to regulate the expression of specific genes during development. NDT80 is regulated during mitosis by both the Sum1 and Ume6 repressors. These results suggest that progression through sporulation may be controlled by the regulated competition between the Sum1 repressor and Ndt80 activator at key MSEs.

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