Solar UV radiation induces significant levels of DNA damage in living things. This damage, if left unrepaired, is lethal in humans. Recent work has demonstrated that plants possess several repair pathways for UV-induced DNA damage, including pathways for the photoreactivation of both 6-4 products and cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPDs), the two lesions most frequently induced by UV. Plants also possess the more general nucleotide excision repair (NER) pathway as well as bypass polymerases that enable the plant to replicate its DNA in the absence of DNA repair.
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