The differential processing of telomeres in response to increased telomeric transcription and RNA-DNA hybrid accumulation

  • Balk B
  • Dees M
  • Bender K
 et al. 
  • 50


    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • 13


    Citations of this article.


Telomeres are protective nucleoprotein structures at the ends of eukaryotic chromosomes. Despite the heterochromatic state of telomeres they are transcribed, generating non-coding telomeric repeat-containing RNA (TERRA). Strongly induced TERRA transcription has been shown to cause telomere shortening and accelerated senescence in the absence of both telomerase and homology-directed repair (HDR). Moreover, it has recently been demonstrated that TERRA forms RNA-DNA hybrids at chromosome ends. The accumulation of RNA-DNA hybrids at telomeres also leads to rapid senescence and telomere loss in the absence of telomerase and HDR. Conversely, in the presence of HDR, telomeric RNA-DNA hybrid accumulation and increased telomere transcription promote telomere recombination, and hence, delayed senescence. Here, we demonstrate that despite these similar phenotypic outcomes, telomeres that are highly transcribed are not processed in the same manner as those that accumulate RNA-DNA hybrids.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Exo1
  • R-loop
  • RNA-DNA hybrid
  • RNase H
  • Senescence
  • Telomere

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document


  • Bettina Balk

  • Martina Dees

  • Katharina Bender

  • Brian Luke

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free