Genome integrity is regulated by the Caenorhabditis elegans Rad51D homolog rfs-1

Genetics. 2008 May;179(1):249-62. doi: 10.1534/genetics.107.076877. Epub 2008 May 5.


Multiple mechanisms ensure genome maintenance through DNA damage repair, suppression of transposition, and telomere length regulation. The mortal germline (Mrt) mutants in Caenorhabditis elegans are defective in maintaining genome integrity, resulting in a progressive loss of fertility over many generations. Here I show that the high incidence of males (him)-15 locus, defined by the deficiency eDf25, is allelic to rfs-1, the sole rad-51 paralog group member in C. elegans. The rfs-1/eDf25 mutant displays a Mrt phenotype and mutant animals manifest features of chromosome fusions prior to the onset of sterility. Unlike other Mrt genes, rfs-1 manifests fluctuations in telomere lengths and functions independently of telomerase. These data suggest that rfs-1 is a novel regulator of genome stability.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Caenorhabditis elegans / genetics*
  • Chromosome Aberrations*
  • Genes, Helminth / genetics*
  • Genomic Instability / genetics*
  • Microsatellite Repeats / genetics
  • Mutation / genetics
  • Population Dynamics
  • Telomere / genetics*