Telomere position effect in human cells

J. A. Baur, Y. Zou, J. W. Shay, W. E. Wright

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Abstract

In yeast, telomere position effect (TPE) results in the reversible silencing of genes near telomeres. Here we demonstrate the presence of TPE in human cells. HeLa clones containing a luciferase reporter adjacent to a newly formed telomere express 10 times less luciferase than do control clones generated by random integration. Luciferase expression is restored by trichostatin A, a histone deacetylase inhibitor. Overexpression of a human telomerase reverse transcriptase complementary DNA results in telomere elongation and an additional 2- to 10-fold decrease in expression in telomeric dones but not control clones. The dependence of TPE on telomere length provides a mechanism for the modification of gene expression throughout the replicative life-span of human cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2075-2077
Number of pages3
JournalScience
Volume292
Issue number5524
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 15 2001

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Baur, J. A., Zou, Y., Shay, J. W., & Wright, W. E. (2001). Telomere position effect in human cells. Science, 292(5524), 2075-2077. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1062329