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PLoS Genet. 2010 Aug 26;6(8). pii: e1001083. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1001083.

Genetic analysis of baker's yeast Msh4-Msh5 reveals a threshold crossover level for meiotic viability.

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1
Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, United States of America.

Abstract

During meiosis, the Msh4-Msh5 complex is thought to stabilize single-end invasion intermediates that form during early stages of recombination and subsequently bind to Holliday junctions to facilitate crossover formation. To analyze Msh4-Msh5 function, we mutagenized 57 residues in Saccharomyces cerevisiae Msh4 and Msh5 that are either conserved across all Msh4/5 family members or are specific to Msh4 and Msh5. The Msh5 subunit appeared more sensitive to mutagenesis. We identified msh4 and msh5 threshold (msh4/5-t) mutants that showed wild-type spore viability and crossover interference but displayed, compared to wild-type, up to a two-fold decrease in crossing over on large and medium sized chromosomes (XV, VII, VIII). Crossing over on a small chromosome, however, approached wild-type levels. The msh4/5-t mutants also displayed synaptonemal complex assembly defects. A triple mutant containing a msh4/5-t allele and mutations that decreased meiotic double-strand break levels (spo11-HA) and crossover interference (pch2Δ) showed synergistic defects in spore viability. Together these results indicate that the baker's yeast meiotic cell does not require the ∼90 crossovers maintained by crossover homeostasis to form viable spores. They also show that Pch2-mediated crossover interference is important to maintain meiotic viability when crossovers become limiting.

PMID:
20865162
PMCID:
PMC2928781
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pgen.1001083
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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