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Mol Biol Cell. 2000 Mar;11(3):873-86.

Mechanisms of sod2 gene amplification in Schizosaccharomyces pombe.

Author information

  • 1Department of Molecular Biology, Lerner Research Institute, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, Ohio 44195, USA.

Abstract

Gene amplification in eukaryotes plays an important role in drug resistance, tumorigenesis, and evolution. The Schizosaccharomyces pombe sod2 gene provides a useful model system to analyze this process. sod2 is near the telomere of chromosome I and encodes a plasma membrane Na(+)(Li(+))/H(+) antiporter. When sod2 is amplified, S. pombe survives otherwise lethal concentrations of LiCl, and >90% of the amplified sod2 genes are found in 180- and 225-kilobase (kb) linear amplicons. The sequence of the novel joint of the 180-kb amplicon indicates that it is formed by recombination between homologous regions near the telomeres of the long arm of chromosome I and the short arm of chromosome II. The 225-kb amplicon, isolated three times more frequently than the 180-kb amplicon, is a palindrome derived from a region near the telomere of chromosome I. The center of symmetry of this palindrome contains an inverted repeat consisting of two identical 134-base pair sequences separated by a 290-base pair spacer. LiCl-resistant mutants arise 200-600 times more frequently in strains deficient for topoisomerases or DNA ligase activity than in wild-type strains, but the mutant cells contain the same amplicons. These data suggest that amplicon formation may begin with DNA lesions such as breaks. In the case of the 225-kb amplicon, the breaks may lead to a hairpin structure, which is then replicated to form a double-stranded linear amplicon, or to a cruciform structure, which is then resolved to yield the same amplicon.

PMID:
10712506
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC14817
Free PMC Article

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