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Chromatin Structure of Altered Yeast Centromeres

Michael Saunders, Molly Fitzgerald-Hayes and Kerry Bloom
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Vol. 85, No. 1 (Jan. 1, 1988), pp. 175-179
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/31031
Page Count: 5
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Chromatin Structure of Altered Yeast Centromeres
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Abstract

We have investigated the chromatin structure of wild-type and mutationally altered centromere sequences in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae by using an indirect end-labeling mapping strategy. Wild-type centromere DNA from chromosome III (CEN3) exhibits a nuclease-resistant chromatin structure 220-250 base pairs long, centered around the conserved centromere DNA element (CDE) III. A point mutation in CDE III that changes a central cytidine to a thymidine and completely disrupts centromere function has lost the chromatin conformation typically associated with the wild-type centromere. A second conserved DNA element, CDE I, is spatially separated from CDE III by 78-86 A+T-rich base pairs, which is termed CDE II. The sequence and spatial requirements for CDE II are less stringent; alterations in CDE II length and sequence can be tolerated to a limited extent. Nuclease-resistant cores are altered in dimension in two CDE II CEN3 mutations. Two CDE I deletion mutations that retain partial centromere function also show nuclease-resistant regions of reduced size and intensity. The results from a number of such altered centromeres indicate a correlation between the presence of a protected core and centromere function.

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