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Michael Reagan, Biology


DNA repair mechanisms are essential in maintaining cell life and ensuring efficient cell replication. In this experiment, we tested for cross complementation of archaeal DNA repair genes (obtained from Methanosarcina acetivorans) in Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast cells lacking Rad 1 and Rad 2 proteins. Five different cell conditions were tested: S. cerevisiae lacking rad 1 with a Bax 1 or a vector plasmid, S. cerevisiae lacking rad 2 with a Bax 1 or vector plasmid, and a wild type S. cerevisiae and no plasmid. Each week, cells were grown in broth culture, plated, and exposed to ultra-violent light, damaging the cell and inducing cellular DNA repair. After incubation, the plates were examined and cell counts were taken to determine percent survival after UV light exposure. Early results indicate that S. cerevisiae mutant strains carrying the Bax 1 gene can substitute for the Rad 1 protein but not the Rad 2 protein. We are currently conducting more trials of this experiment to increase confidence in our results and elaborate on current findings.