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, 27 (3), 271-6

Recombinational DNA Double-Strand Breaks in Mice Precede Synapsis


Recombinational DNA Double-Strand Breaks in Mice Precede Synapsis

S K Mahadevaiah et al. Nat Genet.


In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, meiotic recombination is initiated by Spo11-dependent double-strand breaks (DSBs), a process that precedes homologous synapsis. Here we use an antibody specific for a phosphorylated histone (gamma-H2AX, which marks the sites of DSBs) to investigate the timing, distribution and Spo11-dependence of meiotic DSBs in the mouse. We show that, as in yeast, recombination in the mouse is initiated by Spo11-dependent DSBs that form during leptotene. Loss of gamma-H2AX staining (which in irradiated somatic cells is temporally linked with DSB repair) is temporally and spatially correlated with synapsis, even when this synapsis is 'non-homologous'.

Comment in

  • Gamma-H2AX illuminates meiosis.
    Hunter N, Börner GV, Lichten M, Kleckner N. Hunter N, et al. Nat Genet. 2001 Mar;27(3):236-8. doi: 10.1038/85781. Nat Genet. 2001. PMID: 11242097 No abstract available.

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