Global response of Saccharomyces cerevisiae to an alkylating agent

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1999 Feb 16;96(4):1486-91. doi: 10.1073/pnas.96.4.1486.


DNA chip technology enables simultaneous examination of how approximately 6,200 Saccharomyces cerevisiae gene transcript levels, representing the entire genome, respond to environmental change. By using chips bearing oligonucleotide arrays, we show that, after exposure to the alkylating agent methyl methanesulfonate, approximately 325 gene transcript levels are increased and approximately 76 are decreased. Of the 21 genes that already were known to be induced by a DNA-damaging agent, 18 can be scored as inducible in this data set, and surprisingly, most of the newly identified inducible genes are induced even more strongly than these 18. We examined 42 responsive and 8 nonresponsive ORFs by conventional Northern blotting, and 48 of these 50 ORFs responded as they did by DNA chip analysis, with magnitudes displaying a correlation coefficient of 0.79. Responsive genes fall into several expected and many unexpected categories. Evidence for the induction of a program to eliminate and replace alkylated proteins is presented.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Alkylating Agents / pharmacology*
  • DNA Damage
  • Fungal Proteins / genetics
  • Genes, Fungal
  • Genome, Fungal
  • Methyl Methanesulfonate / pharmacology*
  • Open Reading Frames
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / drug effects
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / genetics*
  • Transcription, Genetic / drug effects*


  • Alkylating Agents
  • Fungal Proteins
  • Methyl Methanesulfonate