Retrotransposons are mobile genetic elements that colonize eukaryotic genomes by replicating through an RNA intermediate. As retrotransposons can move within the host genome, defense mechanisms have evolved to repress their potential mutagenic activities. In the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, the mRNA of Tf2 long terminal repeat retrotransposons is targeted for degradation by the 3′–5′ exonucleolytic activity of the exosome-associated protein Rrp6. Here, we show that the nuclear poly(A)-binding protein Pab2 functions with Rrp6 to negatively control Tf2 mRNA accumulation. Furthermore, we found that Pab2/Rrp6-dependent RNA elimination functions redundantly to the transcriptional silencing mediated by the CENP-B homolog, Abp1, in the suppression of antisense Tf2 RNA accumulation. Interestingly, the absence of Pab2 attenuated the derepression of Tf2 transcription and the increased frequency of Tf2 mobilization caused by the deletion of abp1. Our data also reveal that the expression of antisense Tf2 transcripts is developmentally regulated and correlates with decreased levels of Tf2 mRNA. Our findings suggest that transcriptional and post-transcriptional pathways cooperate to control sense and antisense RNAs expressed from Tf2 retroelements.
- Received July 13, 2016.
- Accepted December 21, 2016.
- Copyright © 2017 by the Genetics Society of America