Dynamique cellulaire des protéines de la réplication chez l'archée halophile Haloferax volcanii

Abstract : The aim of this thesis project was to improve our understanding of DNA replication in archaea, the third domain of life with bacteria and eukarya. The model organism chosen for these studies is the halophilic archaea Haloferax volcanii, a mesophilic aerobe for which genetics tools allow studying in living cells the localization of proteins fused to the Green Fluorescent protein (GFP). Four proteins involved in DNA replication were fused to the GFP and expressed under the control of their own promoter: (i) the ‘Flap Endonuclease 1’ (FEN1), involved in Okazaki fragments maturation, (ii) the ‘Origin Recognition Complex’ (ORC1), involved in DNA replication origin recognition, (iii) the ‘Proliferating Cellular Nuclear Antigen’ (PCNA), processivity factor of replicative DNA polymerases, and (iv) the ‘Replication Protein A’ (RPA2), single-stranded DNA binding protein essential for DNA replication in H. volcanii. Only the PCNA fusion to the GFP was not successful, suggesting that the GFP hinders essential roles of PCNA in DNA replication. Fen1 and Orc1 were successfully fused to the GFP and expressed in living cells, but specific localization in cells related to growth phase, reflecting different replication dynamics, were not observed. In contrast, we could observed fluorescent foci formed by the fully functional GFP::Rpa2 protein that actively responded to DNA damage in H. volcanii cells. The number of these fluorescent foci per cell was constant during cell growth but it significantly increased in cells exposed to aphidicoline, which inhibits DNA synthesis during replication. When cells were treated with phleomycine, a DNA damaging agent mainly causing double-strand breaks, formation of a massive fluorescent focus coinciding with DNA compaction was observed. Our results suggest that the specific cellular localization of GFP::Rpa2 observed reflects Rpa2 roles in DNA repair and/or DNA replication fork restart.
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Floriane Delpech. Dynamique cellulaire des protéines de la réplication chez l'archée halophile Haloferax volcanii. Organisation et fonctions cellulaires [q-bio.SC]. Université Paris-Saclay, 2016. Français. ⟨NNT : 2016SACLX087⟩. ⟨tel-01495466⟩

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