Meiotic association between Spo11 regulated by Rec102, Rec104 and Rec114

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Abstract

Meiotic recombination is initiated by DNA double-stranded break (DSB) formation catalyzed by Spo11, a type-II topoisomerase-like transesterificase, presumably via a dimerization-mediated mechanism. We demonstrate the existence of in vivo interactions between Spo11 proteins carrying distinct tags, and the chromatin-binding and DSB activity of tagged Spo11 at innate and targeted DSB sites upon fusion to the Gal4 DNA-binding domain. First we identified the interaction between Spo11-3FLAG and Gal4BD-Spo11 proteins, and established that this interaction specifically occurs at the time of DSB formation. We then observed that presence of the Gal4BD-spo11Y135F (nuclease-deficient) protein allows Spo11-3FLAG recruitment at the GAL2 locus, indicative of the formation of a hetero-complex near the GAL2 UAS sites, but no formation of double- or single-strand breaks. Spo11 self-interaction around the GAL2 DSB site depends on other proteins for DSB formation, in particular Rec102, Rec104 and Rec114. Together, these results suggest that in vivo self-association of Spo11 during meiosis is genetically regulated. The results are discussed in relation to possible roles of Spo11 self-interaction in the control of the cleavage activity.

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