Inactivation of HAL3 in the absence of SIT4 function leads to cell cycle arrest at the G(1)-S transition. To identify genes potentially involved in the control of this phase of the cell cycle, a screening for multicopy suppressors of a conditional sit4 hal3 mutant (strain JC002) has been developed. The screening yielded several genes known to perform key roles in cell cycle events, such as CLN3, BCK2 or SWI4, thus proving its usefulness as a tool for this type of studies. In addition, this approach allowed the identification of additional genes, most of them not previously related to the regulation of G(1)-S transition or even without known function (named here as VHS1-3, for viable in a hal3 sit4 background). Several of these gene products are involved in phospho-dephosphorylation processes, including members of the protein phosphatase 2A and protein phosphatases 2C families, as well as components of the Hal5 protein kinase family. The ability of different genes to suppress sit4 phenotypes (such as temperature sensitivity and growth on non-fermentable carbon sources) or to mimic the functions of Hal3 was evaluated. The possible relationship between the known functions of these suppressor genes and the progress through the G(1)-S transition is discussed.
Copyright 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.