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Mol Cell. 1999 May;3(5):679-85.

DNA polymerase epsilon catalytic domains are dispensable for DNA replication, DNA repair, and cell viability.

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Department of Molecular Biology, Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, California 92037, USA.


DNA polymerase epsilon (Pol epsilon) is believed to play an essential catalytic role during eukaryotic DNA replication and is thought to participate in recombination and DNA repair. That Pol epsilon is essential for progression through S phase and for viability in budding and fission yeasts is a central element of support for that view. We show that the amino-terminal portion of budding yeast Pol epsilon (Pol2) containing all known DNA polymerase and exonuclease motifs is dispensable for DNA replication, DNA repair, and viability. However, the carboxy-terminal portion of Pol2 is both necessary and sufficient for viability. Finally, the viability of cells lacking Pol2 catalytic function does not require intact DNA replication or damage checkpoints.

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