The fission yeast, Schizosaccharomyces pombe and budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae are excellent model systems for investigating the eukaryotic cell cycle. The conservation of cell cycle regulatory factors from yeasts to higher eukaryotes means that understanding gained in yeast can be applied to guide research on human cells, cell development and cancer.
Our laboratory and others have previously characterized the cell cycle regulated genes in Schizosaccharomyces pombe. Mitotic genes are one of the most strongly oscillating group of genes. Yet the transcriptional regulation of these mitotic genes was very poorly understood in fission yeast. Delineating transcriptional regulation of mitotic genes in S. pombe is a major focus of this dissertation.
Our laboratory has also studied fission yeast cells growing in poor nitrogen conditions, a condition where there may be a switch in cell cycle transcriptional regulation as compared to rich growth conditions. The transcription factors involved in this potential switch are unknown. The alternative G1/S transcriptional regulation of S. pombe in poor nitrogen conditions via the MBF (MluI binding factor) complex is the second major focus of this dissertation.
The results from the first part of my dissertation have led to the identification of a major new mitotic transcriptional activator, Sak1, in S. pombe. My work raises the possibility that homologs of Sak1, the RFX transcription factor family, might have key functions for cell cycle control in humans and are possibly deregulated in human cancers. My work in S. pombe also delineates the roles of Fkh2 and Sep1, the other transcription factors regulating mitosis, and provides a new paradigm for the role of the forkhead transcription factors in mitotic regulation. In the other part of my thesis, my results reveal the requirement for two MBF complex members, Res1 and Rep2, in G1/S progression during growth in the altered cell cycle that occurs in S. pombe in poor nitrogen conditions.
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|Commitee:||Futcher, Bruce, Gergen, John P., Neiman, Aaron, Skiena, Steven S.|
|School:||State University of New York at Stony Brook|
|Department:||Molecular and Cellular Biology|
|School Location:||United States -- New York|
|Source:||DAI-B 76/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Molecular biology, Genetics, Microbiology|
|Keywords:||Cell cycle, Forkhead, Mitosis, Poor nitrogen, RFX, Transcription|
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