Rev3 polymerase and Mph1 DNA helicase participate in error-prone and error-free pathways, respectively, for the bypassing of template lesions during DNA replication. Here we have investigated the role of these pathways and their genetic interaction with recombination factors, other nonreplicative DNA helicases, and DNA damage checkpoint components in the maintenance of genome stability, viability, and sensitivity to the DNA-damaging agent methyl methanesulfonate (MMS). We find that cells lacking Rev3 and Mph1 exhibit a synergistic, Srs2-dependent increase in the rate of accumulating spontaneous, gross chromosomal rearrangements, suggesting that the suppression of point mutations by deletion of REV3 may lead to chromosomal rearrangements. While mph1Delta is epistatic to homologous recombination (HR) genes, both Rad51 and Rad52, but not Rad59, are required for normal growth of the rev3Delta mutant and are essential for survival of rev3Delta cells during exposure to MMS, indicating that Mph1 acts in a Rad51-dependent, Rad59-independent subpathway of HR-mediated lesion bypass. Deletion of MPH1 helicase leads to synergistic DNA damage sensitivity increases in cells with chl1Delta or rrm3Delta helicase mutations, whereas mph1Delta is hypostatic to sgs1Delta. Previously reported slow growth of mph1Delta srs2Delta cells is accompanied by G(2)/M arrest and fully suppressed by disruption of the Mec3-dependent DNA damage checkpoint. We propose a model for replication fork rescue mediated by translesion DNA synthesis and homologous recombination that integrates the role of Mph1 in unwinding D loops and its genetic interaction with Rev3 and Srs2-regulated pathways in the suppression of spontaneous genome rearrangements and in mutation avoidance.
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