University of Massachusetts Medical School Faculty Publications

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Neurobiology; Alkema Lab

Publication Date

2016-05-02

Document Type

Article Preprint

Disciplines

Genetic Phenomena | Genetics | Population Biology

Abstract

Telomeres are involved in the maintenance of chromosomes and the prevention of genome instability. Despite this central importance, significant variation in telomere length has been observed in a variety of organisms. The genetic determinants of telomere-length variation and their effects on organismal fitness are largely unexplored. Here, we describe natural variation in telomere length across the Caenorhabditis elegans species. We identify a large-effect variant that contributes to differences in telomere length. The variant alters the conserved oligosaccharide/oligonucleotide-binding fold of POT-2, a homolog of a human telomere-capping shelterin complex subunit. Mutations within this domain likely reduce the ability of POT-2 to bind telomeric DNA, thereby increasing telomere length. We find that telomere-length variation does not correlate with offspring production or longevity in C. elegans wild isolates, suggesting that naturally long telomeres play a limited role in modifying fitness phenotypes in C. elegans.

Keywords

genetics, telomere length, Caenorhabditis elegans, POT-2

Rights and Permissions

The copyright holder for this preprint (which was not peer-reviewed) is the author/funder. It is made available under a CC-BY 4.0 International license.

DOI of Published Version

10.1101/051276

Source

bioRxiv 051276; doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/051276. Link to preprint on bioRxiv service.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

bioRxiv

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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