Cell cycle-dependent regulation of telomere tethering in the nucleus

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It is well established that telomeres are tethered in the eukaryotic nucleus, but a detailed analysis of the regulation of telomere attachment throughout the cell cycle is still lacking. We show here that the telomeres in the macronucleus of the ciliate Stylonychia lemnae are bound to a sub-nuclear structure by an interaction of the telomere end-binding protein TEBPα with three SNS proteins that are integral parts of this structure. In the course of replication, the interaction of TEBPα with the SNS proteins is resolved and this process is regulated by cell cycle-specific phosphorylation of the SNS proteins. Our data can be incorporated into a mechanistic model for the regulation of telomere conformation and localization throughout the cell cycle.

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