Telomere protein Rap1 is a charge resistant scaffolding protein in chromosomal bouquet formation.
ABSTRACT: Chromosomes reorganize in early meiotic prophase to form the so-called telomere bouquet. In fission yeast, telomeres localize to the nuclear periphery via interaction of the telomeric protein Rap1 with the membrane protein Bqt4. During meiotic prophase, the meiotic proteins Bqt1-2 bind Rap1 and tether to the spindle pole body to form the bouquet. Although it is known that this polarized chromosomal arrangement plays a crucial role in meiotic progression, the molecular mechanisms of telomere bouquet regulation are poorly understood.Here, we detected high levels of Rap1 phospho-modification throughout meiotic prophase, and identified a maximum of 35 phosphorylation sites. Concomitant phosphomimetic mutation of the modification sites suggests that Rap1 hyper-phosphorylation does not directly regulate telomere bouquet formation or dissociation. Despite the negative charge conferred by its highly phosphorylated state, Rap1 maintains interactions with its binding partners. Interestingly, mutations that change the charge of negatively charged residues within the Bqt1-2 binding site of Rap1 abolished the affinity to the Bqt1-2 complex, suggesting that the intrinsic negative charge of Rap1 is crucial for telomere bouquet formation.Whereas Rap1 hyper-phosphorylation observed in meiotic prophase does not have an apparent role in bouquet formation, the intrinsic negative charge of Rap1 is important for forming interactions with its binding partners. Thus, Rap1 is able to retain bouquet formation under heavily phosphorylated status.
Project description:During meiotic prophase, chromosome arrangement and oscillation promote the pairing of homologous chromosomes for meiotic recombination. This dramatic movement involves clustering of telomeres at the nuclear membrane to form the so-called telomere bouquet. In fission yeast, the telomere bouquet is formed near the spindle pole body (SPB), which is the microtubule organising centre, functionally equivalent to the metazoan centrosome. Disruption of bouquet configuration impedes homologous chromosome pairing, meiotic recombination and spindle formation. Here, we demonstrate that the bouquet is maintained throughout meiotic prophase and promotes timely prophase exit in fission yeast. Persistent DNA damages, induced during meiotic recombination, activate the Rad3 and Chk1 DNA damage checkpoint kinases and extend the bouquet stage beyond the chromosome oscillation period. The auxin-inducible degron system demonstrated that premature termination of the bouquet stage leads to severe extension of prophase and consequently spindle formation defects. However, this delayed exit from meiotic prophase was not caused by residual DNA damage. Rather, loss of chromosome contact with the SPB caused delayed accumulation of CDK1-cyclin B at the SPB, which correlated with impaired SPB separation. In the absence of the bouquet, CDK1-cyclin B localised near the telomeres but not at the SPB at the later stage of meiotic prophase. Thus, bouquet configuration is maintained throughout meiotic prophase, by which this spatial organisation may facilitate local and timely activation of CDK1 near the SPB. Our findings illustrate that chromosome contact with the nuclear membrane synchronises meiotic progression of the nucleoplasmic chromosomes with that of the cytoplasmic SPB.
Project description:During meiotic prophase, telomeres cluster, forming the bouquet chromosome arrangement, and facilitate homologous chromosome pairing. In fission yeast, bouquet formation requires switching of telomere and centromere positions. Centromeres are located at the spindle pole body (SPB) during mitotic interphase, and upon entering meiosis, telomeres cluster at the SPB, followed by centromere detachment from the SPB. Telomere clustering depends on the formation of the microtubule-organizing center at telomeres by the linker of nucleoskeleton and cytoskeleton complex (LINC), while centromere detachment depends on disassembly of kinetochores, which induces meiotic centromere formation. However, how the switching of telomere and centromere positions occurs during bouquet formation is not fully understood. Here, we show that, when impaired telomere interaction with the LINC or microtubule disruption inhibited telomere clustering, kinetochore disassembly-dependent centromere detachment and accompanying meiotic centromere formation were also inhibited. Efficient centromere detachment required telomere clustering-dependent SPB recruitment of a conserved telomere component, Taz1, and microtubules. Furthermore, when artificial SPB recruitment of Taz1 induced centromere detachment in telomere clustering-defective cells, spindle formation was impaired. Thus, detachment of centromeres from the SPB without telomere clustering causes spindle impairment. These findings establish novel regulatory mechanisms, which prevent concurrent detachment of telomeres and centromeres from the SPB during bouquet formation and secure proper meiotic divisions.
Project description:Chromosome pairing in meiotic prophase is a prerequisite for the high fidelity of chromosome segregation that haploidizes the genome prior to gamete formation. In the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, as in most multicellular eukaryotes, homologous pairing at the cytological level reflects the contemporaneous search for homology at the molecular level, where DNA double-strand broken ends find and interact with templates for repair on homologous chromosomes. Synapsis (synaptonemal complex formation) stabilizes pairing and supports DNA repair. The bouquet stage, where telomeres have formed a transient single cluster early in meiotic prophase, and telomere-promoted rapid meiotic prophase chromosome movements (RPMs) are prominent temporal correlates of pairing and synapsis. The bouquet has long been thought to contribute to the kinetics of pairing, but the individual roles of bouquet and RPMs are difficult to assess because of common dependencies. For example, in budding yeast RPMs and bouquet both require the broadly conserved SUN protein Mps3 as well as Ndj1 and Csm4, which link telomeres to the cytoskeleton through the intact nuclear envelope. We find that mutants in these genes provide a graded series of RPM activity: wild-type>mps3-dCC>mps3-dAR>ndj1?>mps3-dNT?=?csm4?. Pairing rates are directly correlated with RPM activity even though only wild-type forms a bouquet, suggesting that RPMs promote homologous pairing directly while the bouquet plays at most a minor role in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. A new collision trap assay demonstrates that RPMs generate homologous and heterologous chromosome collisions in or before the earliest stages of prophase, suggesting that RPMs contribute to pairing by stirring the nuclear contents to aid the recombination-mediated homology search.
Project description:In meiotic prophase, telomeres associate with the nuclear envelope and accumulate adjacent to the centrosome/spindle pole to form the chromosome bouquet, a well conserved event that in Saccharomyces cerevisiae requires the meiotic telomere protein Ndj1p. Ndj1p interacts with Mps3p, a nuclear envelope SUN domain protein that is required for spindle pole body duplication and for sister chromatid cohesion. Removal of the Ndj1p-interaction domain from MPS3 creates an ndj1 Delta-like separation-of-function allele, and Ndj1p and Mps3p are codependent for stable association with the telomeres. SUN domain proteins are found in the nuclear envelope across phyla and are implicated in mediating interactions between the interior of the nucleus and the cytoskeleton. Our observations indicate a general mechanism for meiotic telomere movements.
Project description:Telomeres located at the ends of linear chromosomes play important roles in the maintenance of life. Rap1, a component of the shelterin telomere protein complex, interacts with multiple proteins to perform various functions; further, formation of shelterin requires Rap1 binding to other components such as Taz1 and Poz1, and telomere tethering to the nuclear envelope (NE) involves interactions between Rap1 and Bqt4, a nuclear membrane protein. Although Rap1 is a hub for telomere protein complexes, the regulatory mechanisms of its interactions with partner proteins are not fully understood. Here, we show that Rap1 is phosphorylated by casein kinase 2 (CK2) at multiple sites, which promotes interactions with Bqt4 and Poz1. Among the multiple CK2-mediated phosphorylation sites of Rap1, phosphorylation at Ser496 was found to be crucial for both Rap1-Bqt4 and Rap1-Poz1 interactions. These mechanisms mediate proper telomere tethering to the NE and the formation of the silenced chromatin structure at chromosome ends.
Project description:Spermatogenesis is a complex process that generates haploid germ cells or spores and implements meiosis, a succession of two special cell divisions that are required for homologous chromosome segregation. During prophase to the first meiotic division, homologous recombination (HR) repairs Spo11-dependent DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) in the presence of telomere movements to allow for chromosome pairing and segregation at the meiosis I division. In contrast to HR, non-homologous end joining (NHEJ), the major DSB repair mechanism during the G1 cell cycle phase, is downregulated during early meiotic prophase. At somatic mammalian telomeres, the NHEJ factor Ku70/80 inhibits HR, as does the Rap1 component of the shelterin complex. Here, we investigated the role of Ku70 and Rap1 in meiotic telomere redistribution and genome protection in spermatogenesis by studying single and double knockout mice. Ku70(-/-) mice display reduced testis size and compromised spermatogenesis, whereas meiotic telomere dynamics and chromosomal bouquet formation occurred normally in Ku70(-/-) and Ku70(-/-)Rap1(?/?) knockout spermatocytes. Elevated mid-preleptotene frequencies were associated with significantly increased DNA damage in Ku-deficient B spermatogonia, and in differentiated Sertoli cells. Significantly elevated levels of ?H2AX foci in Ku70(-/-) diplotene spermatocytes suggest compromised progression of DNA repair at a subset of DSBs. This might explain the elevated meiotic metaphase apoptosis that is present in Ku70-deficient stage XII testis tubules, indicating spindle assembly checkpoint activation. In summary, our data indicate that Ku70 is important for repairing DSBs in somatic cells and in late spermatocytes of the testis, thereby assuring the fidelity of spermatogenesis.
Project description:In most eukaryotes, the meiotic chromosomal bouquet (comprising clustered chromosome ends) provides an ordered chromosome arrangement that facilitates pairing and recombination between homologous chromosomes. In the protist <i>Tetrahymena thermophila</i>, the meiotic prophase nucleus stretches enormously, and chromosomes assume a bouquet-like arrangement in which telomeres and centromeres are attached to opposite poles of the nucleus. We have identified and characterized three meiosis-specific genes [meiotic nuclear elongation 1-3 (<i>MELG1-3</i>)] that control nuclear elongation, and centromere and telomere clustering. The Melg proteins interact with cytoskeletal and telomere-associated proteins, and probably repurpose them for reorganizing the meiotic prophase nucleus. A lack of sequence similarity between the <i>Tetrahymena</i> proteins responsible for telomere clustering and bouquet proteins of other organisms suggests that the <i>Tetrahymena</i> bouquet is analogous, rather than homologous, to the conserved eukaryotic bouquet. We also report that centromere clustering is more important than telomere clustering for homologous pairing. Therefore, we speculate that centromere clustering may have been the primordial mechanism for chromosome pairing in early eukaryotes.
Project description:The role of the conserved meiotic telomere bouquet has been enigmatic for over a century. We showed previously that disruption of the fission yeast bouquet impairs spindle formation in approximately half of meiotic cells. Surprisingly, bouquet-deficient meiocytes with functional spindles harbour chromosomes that fail to achieve spindle attachment. Kinetochore proteins and the centromeric histone H3 variant Cnp1 fail to localize to those centromeres that exhibit spindle attachment defects in the bouquet's absence. The HP1 orthologue Swi6 also fails to bind these centromeres, suggesting that compromised pericentromeric heterochromatin underlies the kinetochore defects. We find that centromeres are prone to disassembly during meiosis, but this is reversed by localization of centromeres to the telomere-proximal microenvironment, which is conducive to heterochromatin formation and centromere reassembly. Accordingly, artificially tethering a centromere to a telomere rescues the tethered centromere but not other centromeres. These results reveal an unanticipated level of control of centromeres by telomeres.
Project description:The nuclear envelope (NE) plays an essential role in meiotic telomere behavior and links the cytoplasm and nucleoplasm during homologous chromosome pairing and recombination in many eukaryotic species. Resident NE proteins including SUN (Sad-1/UNC-84) and KASH (Klarsicht/ANC-1/Syne-homology) domain proteins are known to interact forming the Linker of Nucleoskeleton and Cytoskeleton (LINC) complex that connects chromatin to the cytoskeleton. To investigate the possible cross-kingdom conservation of SUN protein functions in plant meiosis, we immunolocalized maize SUN2 using 3D microscopy of pollen mother cells from maize (Zea mays L.), a large-genome plant model with a canonical NE zygotene-stage telomere bouquet. We detected SUN2 at the nuclear periphery and found that it exhibited a distinct belt-like structure that transitioned to a half-belt during the zygotene stage and back to a full belt during and beyond the pachytene stage. The zygotene-stage half-belt SUN structure was shown by 3D immuno-FISH to include the NE-associated telomere cluster that defines the bouquet stage and coincides with homologous chromosome synapsis. Microtubule and filamentous actin staining patterns did not show any obvious belt or a retracted-like structure other than a general enrichment of tubulin staining distributed widely around the nucleus and throughout the cytoplasm. Genetic disruption of the meiotic SUN belt staining patterns with three different meiosis-specific mutants, desynaptic (dy1), asynaptic1 (as1), and divergent spindle1 (dv1) provides additional evidence for the role of the nuclear envelope in meiotic chromosome behavior. Taking into account all of the observations from this study, we propose that the maize SUN belt is directly or indirectly involved in meiotic telomere dynamics, chromosome synapsis, and possibly integration of signals and forces across the meiotic prophase nuclear envelope.
Project description:In many organisms, meiotic chromosomes are bundled at their telomeres to form a bouquet arrangement. The bouquet formation plays an important role in homologous chromosome pairing and therefore progression of meiosis. As meiotic telomere clustering occurs in response to mating pheromone signaling in fission yeast, we looked for factors essential for bouquet formation among genes induced under mating pheromone signaling. This genome-wide search identified two novel proteins, Bqt1 and Bqt2, that connect telomeres to the spindle-pole body (SPB; the centrosome equivalent in fungi). Neither Bqt1 nor Bqt2 alone functions as a connector, but together the two proteins form a bridge between Rap1 (a telomere protein) and Sad1 (an SPB protein). Significantly, when both Bqt1 and Bqt2 are ectopically expressed in mitotic cells, they also form a bridge between Rap1 and Sad1. Thus, a complex including Bqt1 and Bqt2 is essential for connecting telomeres to the SPB. Keywords: Keywards: Time course, Nitrogen starvation, Mating pheromone, P-factor. Overall design: Gene expression profile under nitrogen starvation in the absence or presence of mating pheromone in fission yeast. Type of experiment: Comparing between vegetatively-growing control cells and cells in each experimental condition. Experimental factor: Time course after nitrogen starvation in the presence or absence of P-factor. Quality control steps taken: All experiments were repeated twice in each condition.