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Mol Gen Genet. 1989 Oct;219(1-2):153-60.

Chromatin digestion with restriction endonucleases reveals 150-160 bp of protected DNA in the centromere of chromosome XIV in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

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Institute of Microbiology and Molecular Biology, Justus Liebig University, Giessen, Federal Republic of Germany.


Isolated nuclei of Saccharomyces cerevisiae were incubated with five restriction nucleases. Out of the twenty-one recognition sequences for these nucleases in the centromere region of chromosome XIV, only five are accessible to cleavage. These sites map 11 bp and 74 bp to the left and 27 bp, 41 bp and 290 bp to the right, respectively, of the boundaries of the 118 bp functional CEN14 DNA sequence. The distance between the sites accessible to cleavage and closest to CEN14 is 156 bp, suggesting this is the maximal size of DNA protected in CEN14 chromatin. The DNA in CEN14 chromatin protected against cleavage with DNase I and micrococcal nuclease overlaps almost completely with this region. Hypersensitive regions flanking both sides are approximately 60 bp long. Analyses of other S. cerevisiae centromeres with footprinting techniques in intact cells or nucleolytic cleavages in isolated nuclei are discussed in relation to our results. We conclude that structural data of chromatin obtained with restriction nucleases are reliable and that the structure of CEN14 chromatin is representative for S. cerevisiae centromeres.

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