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Genes Dev. 2005 Apr 1;19(7):782-7. Epub 2005 Mar 17.

Chromatin and RNAi factors protect the C. elegans germline against repetitive sequences.

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  • 1Hubrecht Laboratory, 3584 CT Utrecht, The Netherlands.


Protection of genomes against invasion by repetitive sequences, such as transposons, viruses, and repetitive transgenes, involves strong and selective silencing of these sequences. During silencing of repetitive transgenes, a trans effect ("cosuppression") occurs that results in silencing of cognate endogenous genes. Here we report RNA interference (RNAi) screens performed to catalog genes required for cosuppression in the Caenorhabditis elegans germline. We find factors with a putative role in chromatin remodeling and factors involved in RNAi. Together with molecular data also presented in this study, these results suggest that in C. elegans repetitive sequences trigger transcriptional gene silencing using RNAi and chromatin factors.

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