DNA polymerase alpha in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe: identification and tracing of the catalytic subunit during the cell cycle.

Abstract:

A recombinant protein was obtained in Escherichia coli by subcloning part of the Schizosaccharomyces pombe POL1 gene at the 3'-end of lacZ. Antibodies raised against this protein were used to identify the POL1 gene product in extracts of exponentially growing S. pombe cells. A major 170-kDa protein, whose structure and properties were typical of the catalytic subunit of eukaryotic DNA polymerases alpha (pol alpha), was detected. The same antibodies were used to trace pol alpha and to quantify its level during the S. pombe cell cycle. We found that pol alpha was present at all stages of the cycle and that its cellular pool was subject to limited (three-fold) increase in G1 and S phases, with a decline to the initial level soon after. In addition, we found that a second form of pol alpha with slightly lower molecular weight (165 kDa) existed only during late G1 and S phases. Moreover, absence of initiation or perturbations in the course of DNA replication induced overproduction of the 165-kDa form.

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