SAS4 and SAS5 are locus-specific regulators of silencing in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

Eugenia Y. Xu, Susan Kim, David H. Rivier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sir2p, Sir3p, Sir4p, and the core histones form a repressive chromatin structure that silences transcription in the regions near telomeres and at the HML and HMR cryptic mating-type loci in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Null alleles of SAS4 and SAS5 suppress silencing defects at HMR; therefore, SAS4 and SAS5 are negative regulators of silencing at HMR. This study revealed that SAS4 and SAS5 contribute to silencing at HML and the telomeres, indicating that SAS4 and SAS5 are positive regulators of silencing at these loci. These paradoxical locus-specific phenotypes are shared with null alleles of SAS2 and are unique among phenotypes of mutations in other known regulators of silencing. This work also determined that these SAS genes play roles that are redundant with SIR1 at HML, yet distinct from SIR1 at HMR. Furthermore, these SAS genes are not redundant with each other in silencing HML. Collectively, these data suggest that SAS2, SAS4, and SAS5 constitute a novel class of regulators of silencing and reveal fundamental differences in the regulation of silencing at HML and HMR. We provide evidence for a model that accounts for the observation that these SAS genes are both positive and negative regulators of silencing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-33
Number of pages9
Issue number1
StatePublished - Sep 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics


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