Evidence that the S.cerevisiae Sgs1 protein facilitates recombinational repair of telomeres during senescence

Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
Nucleic Acids Research (Impact Factor: 9.11). 02/2006; 34(2):506-16. DOI: 10.1093/nar/gkj452
Source: PubMed


RecQ DNA helicases, including yeast Sgs1p and the human Werner and Bloom syndrome proteins, participate in telomere biology, but the underlying mechanisms are not fully understood. Here, we explore the protein sequences and genetic interactors of Sgs1p that function to slow the senescence of telomerase (tlc1) mutants. We find that the S-phase checkpoint function of Sgs1p is dispensable for preventing rapid senescence, but that Sgs1p sequences required for homologous recombination, including the helicase domain and topoisomerase III interaction domain, are essential. sgs1 and rad52 mutations are epistatic during senescence, indicating that Sgs1p participates in a RAD52-dependent recombinational pathway of telomere maintenance. Several mutations that are synthetically lethal with sgs1 mutation and which individually lead to genome instability, including mus81, srs2, rrm3, slx1 and top1, do not speed the senescence of tlc1 mutants, indicating that the rapid senescence of sgs1 tlc1 mutants is not caused by generic genome instability. However, mutations in SLX5 or SLX8, which encode proteins that function together in a complex that is required for viability in sgs1 mutants, do speed the senescence of tlc1 mutants. These observations further define roles for RecQ helicases and related proteins in telomere maintenance.

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    • "This function may be necessary to allow alternative repair events, such as break-induced replication or microhomology-mediated recombination . Consistently, type II survivors of telomerase ablation, which survive thanks to imprecise recombination events between telomeric repeats, require Slx5/Slx8 activity [56] [57]. On the other hand, Slx5/ Slx8 was reported to inhibit Rad51-mediated (canonical ) recombination events [55]. "
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    ABSTRACT: The double membrane of the eukaryotic nucleus surrounds the genome, constraining it to a nuclear sphere. Proteins, RNA protein particles and artificial chromosome rings diffuse rapidly and freely throughout the nucleoplasm, while chromosomal loci show subdiffusive movement with varying degrees of constraint. In situ biochemical approaches and live imaging studies have revealed the existence of nuclear subcompartments that are enriched for specific chromatin states and/or enzymatic activities. This sequestration is thought to enhance the formation of heterochromatin, particularly when factors of limited abundance are involved. Implicit in the concept of compartmentation is the idea that chromatin is able to move from one compartment to another. Indeed, in budding yeast, gene activation, repression and the presence of persistent DNA double-strand breaks each has been shown to provoke subnuclear relocalization of chromatin. In some cases, movement has been linked to the action of ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling complexes, more specifically to the Snf2-related ATPase-containing complexes, SWR-C and INO80-C. Here we examine how these multi-subunit remodelers contribute to chromatin-based processes linked to the DNA damage response. We review recent evidence that supports a role for yeast SWR-C and INO80-C in determining the subnuclear position of damaged domains and finally, we recap the multiple ways in which these remodelers contribute to genomic integrity.
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    • "Accordingly, Mus81 was recently found at the telomeres of human cells that maintain telomeres through a recombination-based mechanism (92). Confirming previous results, deletion of MUS81 did not affect senescence in Control cells (39); (Figure 7A). In contrast, we found that mus81Δ VST cells displayed faster senescence compared with MUS81 VST cells. "
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    ABSTRACT: In the absence of telomerase, telomeres progressively shorten with every round of DNA replication, leading to replicative senescence. In telomerase-deficient Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the shortest telomere triggers the onset of senescence by activating the DNA damage checkpoint and recruiting homologous recombination (HR) factors. Yet, the molecular structures that trigger this checkpoint and the mechanisms of repair have remained elusive. By tracking individual telomeres, we show that telomeres are subjected to different pathways depending on their length. We first demonstrate a progressive accumulation of subtelomeric single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) through 5′-3′ resection as telomeres shorten. Thus, exposure of subtelomeric ssDNA could be the signal for cell cycle arrest in senescence. Strikingly, early after loss of telomerase, HR counteracts subtelomeric ssDNA accumulation rather than elongates telomeres. We then asked whether replication repair pathways contribute to this mechanism. We uncovered that Rad5, a DNA helicase/Ubiquitin ligase of the error-free branch of the DNA damage tolerance (DDT) pathway, associates with native telomeres and cooperates with HR in senescent cells. We propose that DDT acts in a length-independent manner, whereas an HR-based repair using the sister chromatid as a template buffers precocious 5′-3′ resection at the shortest telomeres.
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    • "Deletion of Sgs1 or Rqh1 has little or no effect on telomere length. However, Sgs1 promotes the telomeric C-strand resection that occurs in late S phase (see section Another Replication Problem: G-Tail Regeneration) and is required to generate type II survivors in telomerase null cells (see section Telomere Recombination in Telomerase Minus Cells) (Azam et al. 2006; Lee et al. 2007). Rqh1 is needed for telomere maintenance in certain genetic backgrounds that compromise telomeres. "
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    ABSTRACT: The molecular era of telomere biology began with the discovery that telomeres usually consist of G-rich simple repeats and end with 3' single-stranded tails. Enormous progress has been made in identifying the mechanisms that maintain and replenish telomeric DNA and the proteins that protect them from degradation, fusions, and checkpoint activation. Although telomeres in different organisms (or even in the same organism under different conditions) are maintained by different mechanisms, the disparate processes have the common goals of repairing defects caused by semiconservative replication through G-rich DNA, countering the shortening caused by incomplete replication, and postreplication regeneration of G tails. In addition, standard DNA repair mechanisms must be suppressed or modified at telomeres to prevent their being recognized and processed as DNA double-strand breaks. Here, we discuss the players and processes that maintain and regenerate telomere structure.
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