Chromosome replication initiates at multiple replicons and terminates when forks converge. In E. coli, the Tus-TER complex mediates polar fork converging at the terminator region, and aberrant termination events challenge chromosome integrity and segregation. Since in eukaryotes, termination is less characterized, we used budding yeast to identify the factors assisting fork fusion at replicating chromosomes. Using genomic and mechanistic studies, we have identified and characterized 71 chromosomal termination regions (TERs). TERs contain fork pausing elements that influence fork progression and merging. The Rrm3 DNA helicase assists fork progression across TERs, counteracting the accumulation of X-shaped structures. The Top2 DNA topoisomerase associates at TERs in S phase, and G2/M facilitates fork fusion and prevents DNA breaks and genome rearrangements at TERs. We propose that in eukaryotes, replication fork barriers, Rrm3, and Top2 coordinate replication fork progression and fusion at TERs, thus counteracting abnormal genomic transitions.
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