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Article
Nature Genetics  36, 809 - 817 (2004)
Published online: 13 June 2004; | doi:10.1038/ng1377

Periodic gene expression program of the fission yeast cell cycle

Gabriella Rustici1, Juan Mata1, Katja Kivinen2, Pietro Lió2, Christopher J Penkett1, Gavin Burns1, Jacqueline Hayles3, Alvis Brazma2, Paul Nurse3, 4 & Jürg Bähler1

1  The Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Hinxton, Cambridge CB10 1SA, UK.

2  EMBL Outstation−Hinxton, European Bioinformatics Institute, Cambridge CB10 1SD, UK.

3  Cancer Research UK London Research Institute, London WC2A 3PX, UK.

4  Present address: The Rockefeller University, New York, New York 10021, USA.

Correspondence should be addressed to Jürg Bähler jurg@sanger.ac.uk
Cell-cycle control of transcription seems to be universal, but little is known about its global conservation and biological significance. We report on the genome-wide transcriptional program of the Schizosaccharomyces pombe cell cycle, identifying 407 periodically expressed genes of which 136 show high-amplitude changes. These genes cluster in four major waves of expression. The forkhead protein Sep1p regulates mitotic genes in the first cluster, including Ace2p, which activates transcription in the second cluster during the M-G1 transition and cytokinesis. Other genes in the second cluster, which are required for G1-S progression, are regulated by the MBF complex independently of Sep1p and Ace2p. The third cluster coincides with S phase and a fourth cluster contains genes weakly regulated during G2 phase. Despite conserved cell-cycle transcription factors, differences in regulatory circuits between fission and budding yeasts are evident, revealing evolutionary plasticity of transcriptional control. Periodic transcription of most genes is not conserved between the two yeasts, except for a core set of approx40 genes that seem to be universally regulated during the eukaryotic cell cycle and may have key roles in cell-cycle progression.

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Nature Genetics
ISSN: 1061-4036
EISSN: 1546-1718
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