The process of meiosis and sporulation in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a highly regulated developmental pathway dependent on genetic as well as nutritional signals. The HOP1 gene, which encodes a component of meiotic chromosomes, is not expressed in mitotically growing cells, but its transcription is induced shortly after yeast cells enter the meiotic pathway. Through a series of deletions and mutations in the HOP1 promoter, we located two regulatory sites that are essential for proper regulation of HOP1. One site, called URS1H, brings about repression of HOP1 in mitotic cells and functions as an activator sequence in cells undergoing meiosis. The second site, which we designated UASH, acts as an activator sequence in meiotic cells and has similarity to the binding site of the mammalian CCAAT/enhancer binding protein (C/EBP). Both sites are required for full meiotic induction of the HOP1 promoter. We conclude that in mitotic yeast cells, the URS1H site maintains the repressed state of the HOP1 promoter, masking the effect of the UASH site. Upon entry into meiosis, repression is lifted, allowing the URS1H and UASH sites to activate high-level transcription.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology