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Chromosoma. 1996 Oct;105(4):250-60.

Inactivation of topoisomerase I or II may lead to recombination or to aberrant replication termination on both SV40 and yeast 2 micron DNA.

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Centre de Recherche en Cancérologie et Département de Biochimie, Université Laval, Hôtel Dieu de Québec, 11 Côte du Palais, G1R 2J6 Québec, Canada.


Topoisomerase I is believed to be sufficient for early replication of circular viral genomes such as those of SV40 and of yeast plasmids. Topoisomerase II is required for the decatenation of the daughter genomes and probably also for fork elongation during the later stages of SV40 replication. Using the neutral-neutral two-dimensional gel system, we have followed the progression of replication of both SV40 and the yeast 2 micron plasmid under various conditions of topoisomerase inhibition. During SV40 replication, inhibition of topoisomerase II by VP16, VM26 or hypertonic shock (but not by merbarone), and inhibition of topoisomerase I by camptothecin all led to the accumulation of aberrant DNA structures containing two almost completely replicated genomes. These aberrant structures resembled either recombination intermediates or late Cairns structures in which the site of replication termination had shifted and now mapped to a continuum of sites throughout the genome. Replication of the 2 micron plasmid in a topoisomerase II- but not a topoisomerase I-deficient yeast gave rise to very similar structures. The data suggest that inactivation of topoisomerase I or II either stimulates recombination or, by differentially affecting replication fork progression, leads to aberrant replication termination.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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