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Genes Dev. 2002 Jan 1;16(1):85-100.

Chromatin assembly factor I and Hir proteins contribute to building functional kinetochores in S. cerevisiae.

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  • 1Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, California 94720, USA.


Budding yeast centromeres are comprised of approximately 125-bp DNA sequences that direct formation of the kinetochore, a specialized chromatin structure that mediates spindle attachment to chromosomes. We report here a novel role for the histone deposition complex chromatin assembly factor I (CAF-I) in building centromeric chromatin. The contribution of CAF-I to kinetochore function overlaps that of the Hir proteins, which have also been implicated in nucleosome formation and heterochromatic gene silencing. cacDelta hirDelta double mutant cells lacking both CAF-I and Hir proteins are delayed in anaphase entry in a spindle assembly checkpoint-dependent manner. Further, cacDelta and hirDelta deletions together cause increased rates of chromosome missegregation, genetic synergies with mutations in kinetochore protein genes, and alterations in centromeric chromatin structure. Finally, CAF-I subunits and Hir1 are enriched at centromeres, indicating that these proteins make a direct contribution to centromeric chromatin structures.

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