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Publications (2)19.43 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Genes with small open reading frames (sORFs; <100 amino acids) represent an untapped source of important biology. sORFs largely escaped analysis because they were difficult to predict computationally and less likely to be targeted by genetic screens. Thus, the substantial number of sORFs and their potential importance have only recently become clear. To investigate sORF function, we undertook the first functional studies of sORFs in any system, using the model eukaryote Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Based on independent experimental approaches and computational analyses, evidence exists for 299 sORFs in the S. cerevisiae genome, representing approximately 5% of the annotated ORFs. We determined that a similar percentage of sORFs are annotated in other eukaryotes, including humans, and 184 of the S. cerevisiae sORFs exhibit similarity with ORFs in other organisms. To investigate sORF function, we constructed a collection of gene-deletion mutants of 140 newly identified sORFs, each of which contains a strain-specific "molecular barcode," bringing the total number of sORF deletion strains to 247. Phenotypic analyses of the new gene-deletion strains identified 22 sORFs required for haploid growth, growth at high temperature, growth in the presence of a nonfermentable carbon source, or growth in the presence of DNA damage and replication-arrest agents. We provide a collection of sORF deletion strains that can be integrated into the existing deletion collection as a resource for the yeast community for elucidating gene function. Moreover, our analyses of the S. cerevisiae sORFs establish that sORFs are conserved across eukaryotes and have important biological functions.
    Genome Research 04/2006; 16(3):365-73. · 14.40 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aerobic metabolism produces reactive oxygen species, including superoxide anions, which cause DNA damage unless removed by scavengers such as superoxide dismutases. We show that loss of the Cu,Zn-dependent superoxide dismutase, SOD1, or its copper chaperone, LYS7, confers oxygen-dependent sensitivity to replication arrest and DNA damage in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We also find that sod1Delta strains, and to a lesser extent lys7Delta strains, when arrested with hydroxyurea (HU) show reduced induction of the MEC1 pathway effector Rnr3p and of Hug1p. The HU sensitivity of sod1Delta and lys7Delta strains is suppressed by overexpression of TKL1, a transketolase that generates NADPH, which balances redox in the cell and is required for ribonucleotide reductase activity. Our results suggest that the MEC1 pathway in sod1Delta mutant strains is sensitive to the altered cellular redox state due to increased superoxide anions and establish a new relationship between SOD1, LYS7, and the MEC1-mediated checkpoint response to replication arrest and DNA damage in S. cerevisiae.
    Molecular and Cellular Biology 01/2006; 25(23):10273-85. · 5.04 Impact Factor