RAD52 is required for almost all recombination events in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We took advantage of the heterozygosity of HIS4 in the Candida albicans SC5314 lineage to study the role of Rad52 in the genomic stability of this important fungal pathogen. The rate of loss of heterozygosity (LOH) at HIS4 in rad52-ΔΔ strains was ∼10 -3, at least 100-fold higher than in Rad52 + strains. LOH of whole chromosome 4 or truncation of the homologue that carries the functional HIS4 allele was detected in all 80 rad52-ΔΔ His auxotrophs (GLH -GL lab His -) obtained from six independent experiments. Isolates that had undergone whole chromosome LOH, presumably due to loss of chromosome, carried two copies of the remaining homologue. Isolates with truncations carried centric fragments of broken chromosomes healed by de novo telomere addition. GLH strains exhibited variable degrees of LOH across the genome, including two strains that became homozygous for all the heterozygous markers tested. In addition, GLH strains exhibited increased chromosomal instability (CIN), which was abolished by reintroduction of RAD52. CIN of GLH isolates is reminiscent of genomic alterations leading to cancer in human cells, and support the mutator hypothesis in which a mutator mutation or CIN phenotype facilitate more mutations/aneuploidies.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology