Yeast artificial chromosome
A yeast artificial chromosome (short YAC) is a vector used to clone large DNA fragments (larger than 100 kb and up to 3000 kb). It is an artificially constructed chromosome and contains the telomeric, centromeric, and replication origin sequences needed for replication and preservation in yeast cells. Built using an initial circular plasmid, they are linearised by using restriction enzymes, and then DNA ligase can add a sequence or gene of interest within the linear molecule by the use of cohesive ends. They were first described in 1983 by Murray & Szostack.
YACs are extremely useful as one can get eukaryotic protein products with posttranslational modifications as yeasts are themselves eukaryotic cells, however YACs have been found to be more unstable than BACs, producing chimeric effects. Before the advent of the Human Genome Project, YACs and BACs were used to map sections of DNA of interest when hunting for specific genes.
The YAC is digested by the two restriction enzymes EcoRI and BamHI.
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