Thomas M. Hammond

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In Neurospora crassa, unpaired genes are silenced by a mechanism called meiotic silencing by unpaired DNA (MSUD). Although some RNA interference proteins are necessary for this process, its requirement of small RNAs has yet to be formally established. Here we report the characterization of small RNAs targeting an unpaired region, using Illumina sequencing.
Meiotic drive is a non-Mendelian inheritance phenomenon in which certain selfish genetic elements skew sexual transmission in their own favor. In some cases, progeny or gametes carrying a meiotic drive element can survive preferentially because it causes the death or malfunctioning of those that do not carry it. In Neurospora, meiotic drive can be observed(More)
In Neurospora, a gene present in an abnormal number of copies is usually a red flag for mischief. One way to deal with these potential intruders is by destroying their transcripts. Widely known as RNA interference (RNAi), this mechanism depends on the "dicing" of a double-stranded RNA intermediate into small-interfering RNA, which in turn guide the(More)
RNA interference (RNAi) depends on the production of small RNA to regulate gene expression in eukaryotes. Two RNAi systems exist to control repetitive selfish elements in Neurospora crassa. Quelling targets transgenes during vegetative growth, whereas meiotic silencing by unpaired DNA (MSUD) silences unpaired genes during meiosis. The two mechanisms require(More)
Mycotoxins are natural fungal products that are defined by their harmful effects on humans and animals. Aflatoxin contamination of maize by Aspergillus species and trichothecene contamination of small grains by Fusarium species are two of the most severe mycotoxin problems in the United States. We are investigating RNA silencing in an effort to identify(More)
An RNA silencing construct was used to alter mycotoxin production in the plant pathogenic fungus Fusarium culmorum, the incitant of crown and foot rot on wheat. The transformation of a wild-type strain and its nitrate reductase-deficient mutant with inverted repeat transgenes (IRTs) containing sequences corresponding to the trichothecene regulatory gene(More)
Neurospora fungi harbor a group of meiotic drive elements known as Spore killers (Sk). Spore killer-2 (Sk-2) and Spore killer-3 (Sk-3) are two Sk elements that map to a region of suppressed recombination. Although this recombination block is limited to crosses between Sk and Sk-sensitive (Sk(S)) strains, its existence has hindered Sk characterization. Here(More)
Fine-scale genetic mapping is often hindered by the lack of adequate markers surrounding the locus of interest. In the filamentous ascomycete Neurospora crassa, the genome has been sequenced and an effort has been made to generate genome-wide deletion strains for the entire gene set. Accordingly, the hygromycin-resistant marker in each deletion strain can(More)
The filamentous fungus Neurospora crassa possesses a process called meiotic silencing by unpaired DNA (MSUD). MSUD has a remarkable ability to scan homologous chromosomes for unpaired DNA during meiosis. After unpaired DNA is identified, MSUD silences all RNA from the unpaired DNA along with any RNA transcribed from homologous sequences at other locations(More)
In Neurospora crassa, genes lacking a pairing partner during meiosis are suppressed by a process known as meiotic silencing by unpaired DNA (MSUD). To identify novel MSUD components, we have developed a high-throughput reverse-genetic screen for use with the N. crassa knockout library. Here we describe the screening method and the characterization of a gene(More)