Sequence analysis of ARS elements in fission yeast

EMBO J. 1988 Jul;7(7):2203-9.


Chromosomal DNA of Schizosaccharomyces pombe contains sequences with properties analogous to ARS elements of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Following Sau3A fragmentation of the S. pombe genome we have recovered a number of such fragments in an M13-based shuttle vector, suitable for subsequent sequence analysis. The complete nucleotide sequence has been obtained for eight ARS+ inserts derived from the Sau3A cloning and for the ARS present in pFL20 isolated previously by Losson and Lacroute (Cell, 32, 371-377, 1983). The Sau3A clones are single fragments between 0.8 and 1.8 kb. No ARS+ clones smaller than this were recovered even though the average size Sau3A fragment in S. pombe is approximately 200-300 bp. The sequence analysis revealed that all clones are AT-rich (69-75% A + T residues), and all contain a particularly AT-rich 11 bp core element represented by the consensus sequence 5' (A/T)PuTT-TATTTA(A/T) 3'. Deletion mapping indicates that the consensus in all cases is in the vicinity of a functional ARS domain. However precise excision of the consensus by in vitro mutagenesis has little effect on ARS activity as judged by the transformation assay. We argue that the association of the consensus with the ARS domain occurs too reproducibly to be explained by chance alone. We suggest that although it may not be essential for the extrachromosomal maintenance of plasmids in S. pombe, the consensus does have a function in situ in the chromosome and thus is always present as a cryptic sequence in the isolated ARS element.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA, Fungal / genetics*
  • DNA, Fungal / isolation & purification
  • Genes, Fungal*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / genetics
  • Saccharomycetales / genetics*
  • Schizosaccharomyces / genetics*


  • DNA, Fungal

Associated data

  • GENBANK/X07890
  • GENBANK/X07891
  • GENBANK/X07892
  • GENBANK/X07893
  • GENBANK/X07894
  • GENBANK/Y00844