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Nucleic Acids Res. 2004 Nov 1;32(19):5894-906. Print 2004.

Domain organization of the yeast histone chaperone FACT: the conserved N-terminal domain of FACT subunit Spt16 mediates recovery from replication stress.

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Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada B3H 1X5.


The abundant nuclear complex termed FACT affects several DNA transactions in a chromatin context, including transcription, replication, and repair. Earlier studies of yeast FACT, which indicated the apparent dispensability of conserved sequences at the N terminus of the FACT subunit Cdc68/Spt16, prompted genetic and biochemical studies reported here that suggest the domain organization for Spt16 and the other FACT subunit Pob3, the yeast homolog of the metazoan SSRP1 protein. Our findings suggest that each FACT subunit is a multidomain protein, and that FACT integrity depends on Pob3 interactions with the Spt16 Mid domain. The conserved Spt16 N-terminal domain (NTD) is shown to be without essential function during normal growth, but becomes important under conditions of replication stress. Genetic interactions suggest that some functions carried out by the Spt16 NTD may be partially redundant within FACT.

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