DNA polymerase I is required for premeiotic DNA replication and sporulation but not for X-ray repair in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

Abstract:

We have used a set of seven temperature-sensitive mutants in the DNA polymerase I gene of Saccharomyces cerevisiae to investigate the role of DNA polymerase I in various aspects of DNA synthesis in vivo. Previously, we showed that DNA polymerase I is required for mitotic DNA replication. Here we extend our studies to several stages of meiosis and repair of X-ray-induced damage. We find that sporulation is blocked in all of the DNA polymerase temperature-sensitive mutants and that premeiotic DNA replication does not occur. Commitment to meiotic recombination is only 2% of wild-type levels. Thus, DNA polymerase I is essential for these steps. However, repair of X-ray-induced single-strand breaks is not defective in the DNA polymerase temperature-sensitive mutants, and DNA polymerase I is therefore not essential for repair of such lesions. These results suggest that DNA polymerase II or III or both, the two other nuclear yeast DNA polymerases for which roles have not yet been established, carry out repair in the absence of DNA polymerase I, but that DNA polymerase II and III cannot compensate for loss of DNA polymerase I in meiotic replication and recombination. These results do not, however, rule out essential roles for DNA polymerase II or III or both in addition to that for DNA polymerase I.

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