Chromosome pairing does not contribute to nuclear architecture in vegetative yeast cells

A. Lorenz, J. Fuchs, J. Loidl, R. Bürger

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29 Citations (Scopus)


There are several reports of a closer-than-random colocalization of homologous chromosomes in the vegetative nuclei of diploid budding yeast. Here, we studied by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) the nuclear distribution of chromosomes and found a slight tendency toward closer proximity between homologous (allelic) loci than between any nonhomologous chromosomal regions. We show that most of this preferential association is not due to vegetative (also known as somatic) pairing but is caused by the polar orientation of interphase chromosomes (Rabl orientation). We quantified the occasional loss of detectable fluorescence signals that is inherent to the FISH method. Signal loss leads to the occurrence of a single signal that may be misinterpreted as the close association of two homologous chromosomal sites. The nuclear distribution of homologous loci, when corrected for the influence of nuclear architecture and methodological faults, was not different or was only marginally different from a random relative positioning as predicted by computer simulation. We discuss here several possibilities for the residual homologous proximity that do not invoke homology-dependent vegetative pairing, and we conclude that, in diploid budding yeast, constitutive vegetative pairing is a negligible factor for the organization of the interphase nucleus.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)856-866
Number of pages11
JournalEukaryotic Cell
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2003


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