Author(s): Murray AW, Szostak JW
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Abstract We have used pedigree analysis to investigate the mitotic segregation of circular and linear DNA plasmids in Saccharomyces cerevisae. Circular ARS plasmids, which bear putative chromosomal replication origins, have a high segregation frequency and a strong bias to segregate to the mother cell at mitosis. The segregation bias explains how the fraction of plasmid-bearing cells can be small despite the high average copy number of circular ARS plasmids. Linear ARS plasmids do not show strong segregation bias, nor does the 2 mu ori-containing plasmid YEp 13, when it is present in strains containing intact 2 mu circles. In the absence of endogenous 2 mu circles, YEp 13 behaves like an ARS plasmid, showing a strong maternal segregation bias. The presence of a centromere on circular ARS plasmids eliminates segregation bias. We discuss a model for plasmid segregation, which explains these findings and the possible biological significance of mother-daughter segregation bias.
This article was published in Cell
and referenced in Journal of Bioremediation & Biodegradation