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Intrinsic resistance of unknown mechanism impedes the clinical utility of inhibitors of cyclin-dependent kinases 4 and 6 (CDK4/6i) in malignancies other than breast cancer. Here, we used melanoma patient-derived xenografts (PDXs) to study the mechanisms for CDK4/6i resistance in preclinical settings. We observed that melanoma PDXs resistant to CDK4/6i frequently displayed activation of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)-AKT pathway, and inhibition of this pathway improved CDK4/6i response in a p21-dependent manner. We showed that a target of p21, CDK2, was necessary for proliferation in CDK4/6i-treated cells. Upon treatment with CDK4/6i, melanoma cells up-regulated cyclin D1, which sequestered p21 and another CDK inhibitor, p27, leaving a shortage of p21 and p27 available to bind and inhibit CDK2. Therefore, we tested whether induction of p21 in resistant melanoma cells would render them responsive to CDK4/6i. Because p21 is transcriptionally driven by p53, we coadministered CDK4/6i with a murine double minute (MDM2) antagonist to stabilize p53, allowing p21 accumulation. This resulted in improved antitumor activity in PDXs and in murine melanoma. Furthermore, coadministration of CDK4/6 and MDM2 antagonists with standard of care therapy caused tumor regression. Notably, the molecular features associated with response to CDK4/6 and MDM2 inhibitors in PDXs were recapitulated by an ex vivo organotypic slice culture assay, which could potentially be adopted in the clinic for patient stratification. Our findings provide a rationale for cotargeting CDK4/6 and MDM2 in melanoma.
Copyright © 2019 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.
Minichromosome maintenance protein 10 (Mcm10) is essential for DNA unwinding by the replisome during S phase. It is emerging as a promising anti-cancer target as MCM10 expression correlates with tumour progression and poor clinical outcomes. Here we used a competition-based fluorescence polarization (FP) high-throughput screening (HTS) strategy to identify compounds that inhibit Mcm10 from binding to DNA. Of the five active compounds identified, only the anti-parasitic agent suramin exhibited a dose-dependent decrease in replication products in an in vitro replication assay. Structure-activity relationship evaluation identified several suramin analogues that inhibited ssDNA binding by the human Mcm10 internal domain and full-length Xenopus Mcm10, including analogues that are selective for Mcm10 over human RPA. Binding of suramin analogues to Mcm10 was confirmed by surface plasmon resonance (SPR). SPR and FP affinity determinations were highly correlated, with a similar rank between affinity and potency for killing colon cancer cells. Suramin analogue NF157 had the highest human Mcm10 binding affinity (FP K 170 nM, SPR K 460 nM) and cell activity (IC 38 µM). Suramin and its analogues are the first identified inhibitors of Mcm10 and probably block DNA binding by mimicking the DNA sugar phosphate backbone due to their extended, polysulfated anionic structures.
Abasic (AP) sites are one of the most common DNA lesions that block replicative polymerases. 5-hydroxymethylcytosine binding, embryonic stem cell-specific protein (HMCES) recognizes and processes these lesions in the context of single-stranded DNA (ssDNA). A HMCES DNA-protein cross-link (DPC) intermediate is thought to shield the AP site from endonucleases and error-prone polymerases. The highly evolutionarily conserved SOS-response associated peptidase (SRAP) domain of HMCES and its Escherichia coli ortholog YedK mediate lesion recognition. Here we uncover the basis of AP site protection by SRAP domains from a crystal structure of the YedK DPC. YedK forms a stable thiazolidine linkage between a ring-opened AP site and the α-amino and sulfhydryl substituents of its amino-terminal cysteine residue. The thiazolidine linkage explains the remarkable stability of the HMCES DPC, its resistance to strand cleavage and the proteolysis requirement for resolution. Furthermore, its structure reveals that HMCES has specificity for AP sites in ssDNA at junctions found when replicative polymerases encounter the AP lesion.
Aside from abasic sites and ribonucleotides, the DNA adduct -methyl deoxyguanosine ( -CH dG) is one of the most abundant lesions in mammalian DNA. Because -CH dG is unstable, leading to deglycosylation and ring-opening, its miscoding potential is not well-understood. Here, we employed a 2'-fluoro isostere approach to synthesize an oligonucleotide containing an analog of this lesion ( -CH 2'-F dG) and examined its miscoding potential with four Y-family translesion synthesis DNA polymerases (pols): human pol (hpol) η, hpol κ, and hpol ι and Dpo4 from the archaeal thermophile We found that hpol η and Dpo4 can bypass the -CH 2'-F dG adduct, albeit with some stalling, but hpol κ is strongly blocked at this lesion site, whereas hpol ι showed no distinction with the lesion and the control templates. hpol η yielded the highest level of misincorporation opposite the adduct by inserting dATP or dTTP. Moreover, hpol η did not extend well past an -CH 2'-F dG:dT mispair. MS-based sequence analysis confirmed that hpol η catalyzes mainly error-free incorporation of dC, with misincorporation of dA and dG in 5-10% of products. We conclude that -CH 2'-F dG and, by inference, -CH dG have miscoding and mutagenic potential. The level of misincorporation arising from this abundant adduct can be considered as potentially mutagenic as a highly miscoding but rare lesion.
© 2019 Njuma et al.
Classical DNA and RNA polymerase (pol) enzymes have defined roles with their respective substrates, but several pols have been found to have multiple functions. We reported previously that purified human DNA pol η (hpol η) can incorporate both deoxyribonucleoside triphosphates (dNTPs) and ribonucleoside triphosphates (rNTPs) and can use both DNA and RNA as substrates. X-ray crystal structures revealed that two pol η residues, Phe-18 and Tyr-92, behave as steric gates to influence sugar selectivity. However, the physiological relevance of these phenomena has not been established. Here, we show that purified hpol η adds rNTPs to DNA primers at physiological rNTP concentrations and in the presence of competing dNTPs. When two rATPs were inserted opposite a cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer, the substrate was less efficiently cleaved by human RNase H2. Human XP-V fibroblast extracts, devoid of hpol η, could not add rNTPs to a DNA primer, but the expression of transfected hpol η in the cells restored this ability. XP-V cell extracts did not add dNTPs to DNA primers hybridized to RNA, but could when hpol η was expressed in the cells. HEK293T cell extracts could add dNTPs to DNA primers hybridized to RNA, but lost this ability if hpol η was deleted. Interestingly, a similar phenomenon was not observed when other translesion synthesis (TLS) DNA polymerases-hpol ι, κ, or ζ-were individually deleted. These results suggest that hpol η is one of the major reverse transcriptases involved in physiological processes in human cells.
© 2019 Su et al.
Abasic sites are one of the most common DNA lesions. All known abasic site repair mechanisms operate only when the damage is in double-stranded DNA. Here, we report the discovery of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) binding, ESC-specific (HMCES) as a sensor of abasic sites in single-stranded DNA. HMCES acts at replication forks, binds PCNA and single-stranded DNA, and generates a DNA-protein crosslink to shield abasic sites from error-prone processing. This unusual HMCES DNA-protein crosslink intermediate is resolved by proteasome-mediated degradation. Acting as a suicide enzyme, HMCES prevents translesion DNA synthesis and the action of endonucleases that would otherwise generate mutations and double-strand breaks. HMCES is evolutionarily conserved in all domains of life, and its biochemical properties are shared with its E. coli ortholog. Thus, HMCES is an ancient DNA lesion recognition protein that preserves genome integrity by promoting error-free repair of abasic sites in single-stranded DNA.
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
RecG catalyzes reversal of stalled replication forks in response to replication stress in bacteria. The protein contains a fork recognition ("wedge") domain that binds branched DNA and a superfamily II (SF2) ATPase motor that drives translocation on double-stranded (ds)DNA. The mechanism by which the wedge and motor domains collaborate to catalyze fork reversal in RecG and analogous eukaryotic fork remodelers is unknown. Here, we used electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy to probe conformational changes between the wedge and ATPase domains in response to fork DNA binding by RecG. Upon binding DNA, the ATPase-C lobe moves away from both the wedge and ATPase-N domains. This conformational change is consistent with a model of RecG fully engaged with a DNA fork substrate constructed from a crystal structure of RecG bound to a DNA junction together with recent cryo-electron microscopy (EM) structures of chromatin remodelers in complex with dsDNA. We show by mutational analysis that a conserved loop within the translocation in RecG (TRG) motif that was unstructured in the RecG crystal structure is essential for fork reversal and DNA-dependent conformational changes. Together, this work helps provide a more coherent model of fork binding and remodeling by RecG and related eukaryotic enzymes.
Control of DNA copy number is essential to maintain genome stability and ensure proper cell and tissue function. In polyploid cells, the SNF2-domain-containing SUUR protein inhibits replication fork progression within specific regions of the genome to promote DNA underreplication. While dissecting the function of SUUR's SNF2 domain, we identified an interaction between SUUR and Rif1. Rif1 has many roles in DNA metabolism and regulates the replication timing program. We demonstrate that repression of DNA replication is dependent on Rif1. Rif1 localizes to active replication forks in a partially SUUR-dependent manner and directly regulates replication fork progression. Importantly, SUUR associates with replication forks in the absence of Rif1, indicating that Rif1 acts downstream of SUUR to inhibit fork progression. Our findings uncover an unrecognized function of the Rif1 protein as a regulator of replication fork progression.
© 2018, Munden et al.
Helicase-like transcription factor (HLTF) is a central mediator of the DNA damage response and maintains genome stability by regressing stalled replication forks. The N-terminal HIRAN domain binds specifically to the 3'-end of single-stranded DNA (ssDNA), and disrupting this function interferes with fork regression as well as replication fork progression in cells under replication stress. Here, we investigated the mechanism by which the HIRAN-ssDNA interaction facilitates fork remodeling. Our results indicated that HIRAN capture of a denatured nascent leading 3'-end directs specific binding of HLTF to forks. DNase footprinting revealed that HLTF binds to the parental duplex ahead of the fork and at the leading edge behind the fork. Moreover, we found that the HIRAN domain is important for initiating regression of forks when both nascent strands are at the junction, but is dispensable when forks contain ssDNA regions on either template strand. We also found that HLTF catalyzes fork restoration from a partially regressed structure in a HIRAN-dependent manner. Thus, HIRAN serves as a substrate-recognition domain to properly orient the ATPase motor domain at stalled and regressed forks and initiates fork remodeling by guiding formation of a four-way junction. We discuss how these activities compare with those of two related fork remodelers, SWI/SNF-related, matrix-associated, actin-dependent regulator of chromatin, subfamily A-like 1 (SMARCAL1) and zinc finger RANBP2 type-containing 3 (ZRANB3) to provide insight into their nonredundant roles in DNA damage tolerance.
© 2018 Chavez et al.
Antagonists of MDM2-p53 interaction are emerging anti-cancer drugs utilized in clinical trials for malignancies that rarely mutate p53, including melanoma. We discovered that MDM2-p53 antagonists protect DNA from drug-induced damage in melanoma cells and patient-derived xenografts. Among the tested DNA damaging drugs were various inhibitors of Aurora and Polo-like mitotic kinases, as well as traditional chemotherapy. Mitotic kinase inhibition causes mitotic slippage, DNA re-replication, and polyploidy. Here we show that re-replication of the polyploid genome generates replicative stress which leads to DNA damage. MDM2-p53 antagonists relieve replicative stress via the p53-dependent activation of p21 which inhibits DNA replication. Loss of p21 promoted drug-induced DNA damage in melanoma cells and enhanced anti-tumor activity of therapy combining MDM2 antagonist with mitotic kinase inhibitor in mice. In summary, MDM2 antagonists may reduce DNA damaging effects of anti-cancer drugs if they are administered together, while targeting p21 can improve the efficacy of such combinations.
Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.