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J Biol Chem. 2003 Mar 14;278(11):9212-8. Epub 2003 Jan 3.

Rad54p is a chromatin remodeling enzyme required for heteroduplex DNA joint formation with chromatin.

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  • 1Interdisciplinary Graduate Program and Program in Molecular Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, Massachusetts 01605, USA.


In eukaryotic cells, the repair of DNA double-strand breaks by homologous recombination requires a RecA-like recombinase, Rad51p, and a Swi2p/Snf2p-like ATPase, Rad54p. Here we find that yeast Rad51p and Rad54p support robust homologous pairing between single-stranded DNA and a chromatin donor. In contrast, bacterial RecA is incapable of catalyzing homologous pairing with a chromatin donor. We also show that Rad54p possesses many of the biochemical properties of bona fide ATP-dependent chromatin-remodeling enzymes, such as ySWI/SNF. Rad54p can enhance the accessibility of DNA within nucleosomal arrays, but it does not seem to disrupt nucleosome positioning. Taken together, our results indicate that Rad54p is a chromatin-remodeling enzyme that promotes homologous DNA pairing events within the context of chromatin.

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