Shedding new light on an old problem

The protein kinase Ataxia-telangiectasia mutated (ATM) is at the heart of the cellular response to DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). Using super-resolution microscopy, the lab of Peter Schlögelhofer has explored the impact of ATM depletion during multiple steps of meiosis in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana at unprecedented resolution. Organisms lacking ATM exhibit a loss of fertility associated with a failure to correctly repair DSBs. The findings, published in The Plant Cell, describe previously unrecognized influences of ATM on the structure of meiotic chromosomes.

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