Meiotic recombination in Saccharomyces cerevisiae is initiated by programmed DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs), a process that requires the Spo11 protein. DSBs usually occur in intergenic regions that display open chromatin accessibility, but other determinants that control their frequencies and non-random chromosomal distribution remain obscure. We report that a Spo11 construct bearing the Gal4 DNA binding domain not only rescues spo11Δ spore inviability and catalyzes DSB formation at natural sites but also strongly stimulates DSB formation near Gal4 binding sites. At GAL2, a naturally DSB-cold locus, Gal4BD-Spo11 creates a recombinational hotspot that depends on all the other DSB gene functions, showing that the targeting of Spo11 to a specific site is sufficient to stimulate meiotic recombination that is under normal physiological control.
Pecia, A., Smith, K. N., Mézard, C., Murakami, H., Ohta, K., & Nicolas, A. (2002). Targeted stimulation of meiotic recombination. Cell, 111(2), 173–184. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0092-8674(02)01002-4