Date of Award

3-23-2016

Document Type

Thesis and Dissertation

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

School of Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Tom M. Hammond

Abstract

Meiotic silencing by unpaired DNA (MSUD) is a process observed in the model organism Neurospora crassa. During this process unpaired DNA between homologous chromosomes is detected and silenced, resulting in the suppression of unpaired genes. The effects of MSUD can be seen using phenotypic markers such as the Roundspore gene and evidence supports the existence of a physical search for unpaired DNA. However, the mechanism for detecting unpaired DNA remains uncertain. Previously, we have shown evidence that a Rad54-like protein, SAD-6 is required for the efficient completion of MSUD and may be necessary for the detection of unpaired DNA. Currently, we are working to determine the mechanism and proteins (along with SAD-6) that are involved in the homology search that detects unpaired DNA. SAD-6, and its homolog Rad54, share a conserved helicase domain and other similarities between their amino acid sequences suggesting they play a similar role within the nucleus. Rad54 is an essential protein throughout multiple stages of homologous recombination-based DNA repair. While it is uncertain whether homologous recombination is required for MSUD, we are investigating the possibility that SAD-6 shares similar biochemical activities with Rad54.

Comments

Imported from ProQuest Smith_ilstu_0092N_10742.pdf

Page Count

136

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