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      DNA breaks and chromosomal aberrations arise when replication meets base excision repair

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          Abstract

          DNA double-strand breaks and chromosomal aberrations after treatment with N-alkylating agents likely arise as a result of replication fork collision with single-strand breaks generated during base excision repair.

          Abstract

          Exposures that methylate DNA potently induce DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) and chromosomal aberrations, which are thought to arise when damaged bases block DNA replication. Here, we demonstrate that DNA methylation damage causes DSB formation when replication interferes with base excision repair (BER), the predominant pathway for repairing methylated bases. We show that cells defective in the N-methylpurine DNA glycosylase, which fail to remove N-methylpurines from DNA and do not initiate BER, display strongly reduced levels of methylation-induced DSBs and chromosomal aberrations compared with wild-type cells. Also, cells unable to generate single-strand breaks (SSBs) at apurinic/apyrimidinic sites do not form DSBs immediately after methylation damage. In contrast, cells deficient in x-ray cross-complementing protein 1, DNA polymerase β, or poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase 1 activity, all of which fail to seal SSBs induced at apurinic/apyrimidinic sites, exhibit strongly elevated levels of methylation-induced DSBs and chromosomal aberrations. We propose that DSBs and chromosomal aberrations after treatment with N-alkylators arise when replication forks collide with SSBs generated during BER.

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          Most cited references62

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          Single-strand break repair and genetic disease.

          Hereditary defects in the repair of DNA damage are implicated in a variety of diseases, many of which are typified by neurological dysfunction and/or increased genetic instability and cancer. Of the different types of DNA damage that arise in cells, single-strand breaks (SSBs) are the most common, arising at a frequency of tens of thousands per cell per day from direct attack by intracellular metabolites and from spontaneous DNA decay. Here, the molecular mechanisms and organization of the DNA-repair pathways that remove SSBs are reviewed and the connection between defects in these pathways and hereditary neurodegenerative disease are discussed.
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            gammaH2AX foci analysis for monitoring DNA double-strand break repair: strengths, limitations and optimization.

            DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) represent an important radiation-induced lesion and impaired DSB repair provides the best available correlation with radiosensitivity. Physical techniques for monitoring DSB repair require high, non-physiological doses and cannot reliably detect subtle defects. One outcome from extensive research into the DNA damage response is the observation that H2AX, a variant form of the histone H2A, undergoes extensive phosphorylation at the DSB, creating gammaH2AX foci that can be visualized by immunofluorescence. There is a close correlation between gammaH2AX foci and DSB numbers and between the rate of foci loss and DSB repair, providing a sensitive assay to monitor DSB repair in individual cells using physiological doses. However, gammaH2AX formation can occur at single-stranded DNA regions which arise during replication or repair and thus does not solely correlate with DSB formation. Here, we present and discuss evidence that following exposure to ionizing radiation, gammaH2AX foci analysis can provide a sensitive monitor of DSB formation and repair and describe techniques to optimize the analysis. We discuss the limitations and benefits of the technique, enabling the procedure to be optimally exploited but not misused.
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              XRCC1 and DNA strand break repair.

              DNA single-strand breaks can arise indirectly, as normal intermediates of DNA base excision repair, or directly from damage to deoxyribose. Because single-strand breaks are induced by endogenous reactive molecules such as reactive oxygen species, these lesions pose a continuous threat to genetic integrity. XRCC1 protein plays a major role in facilitating the repair of single-strand breaks in mammalian cells, via an ability to interact with multiple enzymatic components of repair reactions. Here, the protein-protein interactions facilitated by XRCC1, and the repair processes in which these interactions operate, are reviewed. Models for the repair of single-strand breaks during base excision repair and at direct breaks are presented.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                J Cell Biol
                J. Cell Biol
                jcb
                jcb
                The Journal of Cell Biology
                The Rockefeller University Press
                0021-9525
                1540-8140
                7 July 2014
                : 206
                : 1
                : 29-43
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Radiation Biology and DNA Repair, Darmstadt University of Technology, 64287 Darmstadt, Germany
                [2 ]Institute of Toxicology, Medical Center of the University Mainz, 55131 Mainz, Germany
                Author notes
                Correspondence to Markus Löbrich: lobrich@ 123456bio.tu-darmstadt.de ; or Bernd Kaina: kaina@ 123456uni-mainz.de
                Article
                201312078
                10.1083/jcb.201312078
                4085701
                24982429
                8ce3c7ae-e4f2-406a-9432-23d4c5db06cd
                © 2014 Ensminger et al.

                This article is distributed under the terms of an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike–No Mirror Sites license for the first six months after the publication date (see http://www.rupress.org/terms). After six months it is available under a Creative Commons License (Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported license, as described at http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/).

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