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Sequential and counter-selectable cassettes for fission yeast

Amelina, H; Moiseeva, V; Collopy, LC; Pearson, SR; Armstrong, CA; Tomita, K; (2016) Sequential and counter-selectable cassettes for fission yeast. BMC Biotechnology , 16 , Article 76. 10.1186/s12896-016-0307-4. Green open access

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BACKGROUND: Fission yeast is one of the most commonly used model organisms for studying genetics. For selection of desirable genotypes, antibiotic resistance cassettes are widely integrated into the genome near genes of interest. In yeasts, this is achieved by PCR amplification of the cassette flanked by short homology sequences, which can be incorporated by homology directed repair. However, the currently available cassettes all share the same tef promoter and terminator sequences. It can therefore be challenging to perform multiple genetic modifications by PCR-based targeting, as existing resistance cassettes in strains can be favored for recombination due to shared homology between the cassettes. RESULTS: Here we have generated new selection cassettes that do not recombine with those traditionally used. We achieved this by swapping the tef promoter and terminator sequences in the established antibiotic resistance MX6 cassette series for alternative promoters and/or terminators. The newly created selection cassettes did not recombine with the tef-containing MX6 cassettes already present in the genome, allowing for sequential gene targeting using the PCR-based method. In addition, we have generated a series of plasmids to facilitate the C-terminal tagging of genes with desired epitopes. We also utilized the anti-selection gene HSV-TK, which results in cell death in strains grown on the drug 5-Fluoro-2'-deoxyuridine (FdU, Floxuridin or FUDR). By fusing an antibiotic resistance gene to HSV-TK, we were able to select on the relevant antibiotic as well as counter-select on FdU media to confirm the desired genomic modification had been made. We noted that the efficiency of the counter selection by FdU was enhanced by treatment with hydroxyurea. However, a number of DNA replication checkpoint and homologous recombination mutants, including rad3∆, cds1∆, rad54∆ and rad55∆, exhibited sensitivity to FdU even though those strains did not carry the HSV-TK gene. To remove counter-selectable markers, we introduced the Cre-loxP irreversible recombination method. Finally, utilizing the negative selectable markers, we showed efficient induction of point mutations in an endogenous gene by a two-step transformation method. CONCLUSIONS: The plasmid constructs and techniques described here are invaluable tools for sequential gene targeting and will simplify construction of fission yeast strains required for study.

Type: Article
Title: Sequential and counter-selectable cassettes for fission yeast
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1186/s12896-016-0307-4
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12896-016-0307-4
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author(s) 2016. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Keywords: DNA replication, FUdR, Gene disruption and insertion, HA, Flag, PK tagging, Point mutation, Schizosaccharomyces pombe, Thymidine kinase, Zeocin
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Cancer Institute
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Cancer Institute > Research Department of Cancer Bio
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1529343
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