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To examine the role of telomerase in normal and neoplastic growth, the telomerase RNA component (mTR) was deleted from the mouse germline. mTR-/- mice lacked detectable telomerase activity yet were viable for the six generations analyzed. Telomerase-deficient cells could be immortalized in culture, transformed by viral oncogenes, and generated tumors in(More)
The proliferative life-span of the stem cells that sustain hematopoiesis throughout life is not known. It has been proposed that the sequential loss of telomeric DNA from the ends of human chromosomes with each somatic cell division eventually reaches a critical point that triggers cellular senescence. We now show that candidate human stem cells with a(More)
To study telomere length dynamics in hematopoietic cells with age, we analyzed the average length of telomere repeat sequences in diverse populations of nucleated blood cells. More than 500 individuals ranging in age from 0 to 90 yr, including 36 pairs of monozygous and dizygotic twins, were analyzed using quantitative fluorescence in situ hybridization and(More)
It is generally assumed that sister chromatids are genetically and functionally identical and that segregation to daughter cells is a random process. However, functional differences between sister chromatids regulate daughter cell fate in yeast and sister chromatid segregation is not random in Escherichia coli. Differentiated sister chromatids, coupled with(More)
Little is known about the genes that regulate telomere length diversity between mammalian species. A candidate gene locus was previously mapped to a region on distal mouse Chr 2q. Within this region, we identified a gene similar to the dog-1 DNA helicase-like gene in C. elegans. We cloned this Regulator of telomere length (Rtel) gene and inactivated its(More)
DNA rearrangements such as sister chromatid exchanges (SCEs) are sensitive indicators of genomic stress and instability, but they are typically masked by single-cell sequencing techniques. We developed Strand-seq to independently sequence parental DNA template strands from single cells, making it possible to map SCEs at orders-of-magnitude greater(More)
Telomeres protect against DNA degradation at the ends of linear chromosomes. The number of telomere repeats is reduced over time in human aging. Using flow FISH we have assessed telomere length in 134 exceptionally healthy seniors aged 85 or older who have never been diagnosed with cancer, cardiovascular disease, major pulmonary disease, diabetes or(More)
Telomerase activity is readily detectable in extracts from human hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells, but appears unable to maintain telomere length with proliferation in vitro and with age in vivo. We performed a detailed study of the telomere length by flow FISH analysis in leukocytes from 835 healthy individuals and 60 individuals with reduced(More)
Telomere associations have been observed during key cellular processes such as mitosis, meiosis, and carcinogenesis and must be resolved before cell division to prevent genome instability. Here we establish that telomeric repeat-binding factor 1 (TRF1), a core component of the telomere protein complex, is a mediator of telomere associations in mammalian(More)
BACKGROUND Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is progressive and often fatal; causes of familial clustering of the disease are unknown. Germ-line mutations in the genes hTERT and hTR, encoding telomerase reverse transcriptase and telomerase RNA, respectively, cause autosomal dominant dyskeratosis congenita, a rare hereditary disorder associated with premature(More)