Dual requirement in yeast DNA mismatch repair for MLH1 and PMS1, two homologs of the bacterial mutL gene

T. A. Prolla, D. M. Christie, R. M. Liskay

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207 Scopus citations


We have identified a new Saccharomyces cerevisiae gene, MLH1 (mutL homolog), that encodes a predicted protein product with sequence similarity to DNA mismatch repair proteins of bacteria (MutL and HexB) and S. cerevisiae yeast (PMS1). Disruption of the MLH1 gene results in elevated spontaneous mutation rates during vegetative growth as measured by forward mutation to canavanine resistance and reversion of the hom3-10 allele. Additionally, the mlh1Δ mutant displays a dramatic increase in the instability of simple sequence repeats, i.e., (GT)(n) (M. Strand, T. A. Prolla, R. M. Liskay, and T. D. Petes, Nature [London] 365:274-276, 1993). Meiotic studies indicate that disruption of the MLH1 gene in diploid strains causes increased spore lethality, presumably due to the accumulation of recessive lethal mutations, and increased postmeiotic segregation at each of four loci, the latter being indicative of inefficient repair of heteroduplex DNA generated during genetic recombination. mlh1Δ mutants, which should represent the null phenotype, show the same mutator and meiotic phenotypes as isogenic pms1Δ mutants. Interestingly, mutator and meiotic phenotypes of the mlh1Δ pms1Δ double mutant are indistinguishable from those of the mlh1Δ and pms1Δ single mutants. On the basis of our data, we suggest that in contrast to Escherichia coli, there are two MutL/HexB-like proteins in S. cerevisiae and that each is a required component of the same DNA mismatch repair pathway.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)407-415
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular and cellular biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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