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  • Multi-color dSTORM microscopy in Hormad1-/- spermatocytes reveals alterations in meiotic recombination intermediates and synaptonemal complex structure.

Multi-color dSTORM microscopy in Hormad1-/- spermatocytes reveals alterations in meiotic recombination intermediates and synaptonemal complex structure.

PLoS genetics (2022-07-21)
Lieke Koornneef, Johan A Slotman, Esther Sleddens-Linkels, Wiggert A van Cappellen, Marco Barchi, Attila Tóth, Joost Gribnau, Adriaan B Houtsmuller, Willy M Baarends
ABSTRACT

Recombinases RAD51 and its meiosis-specific paralog DMC1 accumulate on single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) of programmed DNA double strand breaks (DSBs) in meiosis. Here we used three-color dSTORM microscopy, and a mouse model with severe defects in meiotic DSB formation and synapsis (Hormad1-/-) to obtain more insight in the recombinase accumulation patterns in relation to repair progression. First, we used the known reduction in meiotic DSB frequency in Hormad1-/- spermatocytes to be able to conclude that the RAD51/DMC1 nanofoci that preferentially localize at distances of ~300 nm form within a single DSB site, whereas a second preferred distance of ~900 nm, observed only in wild type, represents inter-DSB distance. Next, we asked whether the proposed role of HORMAD1 in repair inhibition affects the RAD51/DMC1 accumulation patterns. We observed that the two most frequent recombinase configurations (1 DMC1 and 1 RAD51 nanofocus (D1R1), and D2R1) display coupled frequency dynamics over time in wild type, but were constant in the Hormad1-/- model, indicating that the lifetime of these intermediates was altered. Recombinase nanofoci were also smaller in Hormad1-/- spermatocytes, consistent with changes in ssDNA length or protein accumulation. Furthermore, we established that upon synapsis, recombinase nanofoci localized closer to the synaptonemal complex (SYCP3), in both wild type and Hormad1-/- spermatocytes. Finally, the data also revealed a hitherto unknown function of HORMAD1 in inhibiting coil formation in the synaptonemal complex. SPO11 plays a similar but weaker role in coiling and SYCP1 had the opposite effect. Using this large super-resolution dataset, we propose models with the D1R1 configuration representing one DSB end containing recombinases, and the other end bound by other ssDNA binding proteins, or both ends loaded by the two recombinases, but in below-resolution proximity. This may then often evolve into D2R1, then D1R2, and finally back to D1R1, when DNA synthesis has commenced.

MATERIALS
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Glucose Oxidase from Aspergillus niger, Type VII, lyophilized powder, ≥100,000 units/g solid (without added oxygen)
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