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Reference: Strawn LA, et al. (2009) Mutants of the Paf1 complex alter phenotypic expression of the yeast prion [PSI+]. Mol Biol Cell 20(8):2229-41

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Abstract

Monitoring Editor: Jonathan Weissman The yeast [PSI+] prion is an epigenetic modifier of translation termination fidelity that causes nonsense suppression. The prion [PSI+] forms when the translation termination factor Sup35p adopts a self-propagating conformation. The presence of the [PSI+] prion modulates survivability in a variety of growth conditions. Nonsense suppression is essential for many [PSI+]-mediated phenotypes, but many do not appear to be due to read-through of a single stop codon, but instead are multigenic traits. We hypothesized that other global mechanisms act in concert with [PSI+] to influence [PSI+]-mediated phenotypes. We have identified one such global regulator, the Paf1 complex (Paf1C). Paf1C is conserved in eukaryotes and has been implicated in several aspects of transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation. Mutations in Ctr9p and other Paf1C components reduced [PSI+]-mediated nonsense suppression. The CTR9 deletion also alters nonsense suppression afforded by other genetic mutations but not always to the same extent as the effects on [PSI+]-mediated read-through. Our data suggest that the Paf1 complex influences mRNA translatability but not solely through changes in transcript stability or abundance. Finally, we demonstrate that the CTR9 deletion alters several [PSI+]-dependent phenotypes. This provides one example of how [PSI+] and genetic modifiers can interact to uncover and regulate phenotypic variability.

Reference Type
Journal Article
Authors
Strawn LA, Lin CA, Tank EM, Osman MM, Simpson SA, True HL
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