The origin of DNA replication (oriC) of the hyperthermophilic archaeon Pyrococcus abyssi contains multiple ORB and mini-ORB repeats that show sequence similarities to other archaeal ORB (origin recognition box). We report here that the binding of Cdc6/Orc1 to a 5 kb region containing oriC in vivo was highly specific both in exponential and stationary phases, by means of chromatin immunoprecipitation coupled with hybridization on a whole genome microarray (ChIP-chip). The oriC region is practically the sole binding site for the Cdc6/Orc1, thereby distinguishing oriC in the 1.8M bp genome. We found that the 5 kb region contains a previously unnoticed cluster of ORB and mini-ORB repeats in the gene encoding the small subunit (dp1) for DNA polymerase II (PolD). ChIP and the gel retardation analyses further revealed that Cdc6/Orc1 specifically binds both of the ORB clusters in oriC and dp1. The organization of the ORB clusters in the dp1 and oriC is conserved during evolution in the order Thermococcales, suggesting a role in the initiation of DNA replication. Our ChIP-chip analysis also revealed that Mcm alters the binding specificity to the oriC region according to the growth phase, consistent with its role as a licensing factor.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes