Length and sequence heterozygosity differentially affect HRAS1 minisatellite stability during meiosis in yeast

Peter A. Jauert, David T. Kirkpatrick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Minisatellites, one of the major classes of repetitive DNA sequences in eukaryotic genomes, are stable in somatic cells but destabilize during meiosis. We previously established a yeast model system by inserting the human Ha-ras/HRAS1 minisatellite into the HIS4 promoter and demonstrated that our system recapitulates all of the phenotypes associated with the human minisatellite. Here we demonstrate that meiotic minisatellite tract-length changes are half as frequent in diploid cells harboring heterozygous HRAS1 minisatellite tracts in which the two tracts differ by only two bases when compared to a strain with homozygous minisatellite tracts. Further, this decrease in alteration frequency is entirely dependent on DNA mismatch repair. In contrast, in a diploid strain containing heterozygous minisatellite tract alleles differing in length by three complete repeats, length alterations are observed at twice the frequency seen in a strain with homozygous tracts. Alterations consist of previously undetectable gene conversion events, plus nonparental length alteration events seen previously in strains with homozygous tracts. A strain containing tracts with both base and length heterozygosity exhibits the same level of alteration as a strain containing only length heterozygosity, indicating that base heterozygosity-dependent tract stabilization does not affect tract-length alterations occurring by gene conversion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)601-612
Number of pages12
JournalGenetics
Volume170
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2005

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