Global Transcriptional Programs in Archaea Share Features with the Eukaryotic Environmental Stress Response.
The environmental stress response (ESR), a global transcriptional program originally identified in yeast, is characterized by a rapid and transient transcriptional response composed of large, oppositely regulated gene clusters. Genes induced during the ESR encode core components of stress tolerance, macromolecular repair, and maintenance of homeostasis. In this review, we investigate the possibility for conservation of the ESR across the eukaryotic and archaeal domains of life. We first re-analyze existing transcriptomics data sets to illustrate that a similar transcriptional response is identifiable in Halobacterium salinarum, an archaeal model organism. To substantiate the archaeal ESR, we calculated gene-by-gene correlations, gene function enrichment, and comparison of temporal dynamics. We note reported examples of variation in the ESR across fungi, then synthesize high-level trends present in expression data of other archaeal species. In particular, we emphasize the need for additional high-throughput time series expression data to further characterize stress-responsive transcriptional programs in the Archaea. Together, this review explores an open question regarding features of global transcriptional stress response programs shared across domains of life.
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