Molecular Life Sciences

Living Edition
| Editors: Robert D. Wells, Judith S. Bond, Judith Klinman, Bettie Sue Siler Masters, Ellis Bell

Roles of Post-translational Modifications in DNA Double-Strand Break Repair

Living reference work entry


Genomic integrity is constantly challenged by DNA lesions, several thousands of which occur in each human cell every day. A particularly hazardous type of DNA lesion is the double-strand break (DSB), which can lead to large genetic alterations if not repaired accurately. To cope with DSBs, cells have evolved three highly conserved repair mechanisms: homologous recombination (HR), non-homologous end joining (NHEJ), and telomere addition. These competing mechanisms can lead to different outcomes, and all are tightly regulated at the levels of pathway choice and repair efficiency. Increasing evidence highlights the important roles of post-translational modifications (PTMs) in this regulation. This essay summarizes the current understanding of how PTMs contribute to DSB repair, with an emphasis on the most recent progress in the field.


Among the three pathways that heal DSBs, HR can be the most faithful form of repair. HR begins with a two-stage 5′–3′ resection of the...


Homologous Recombination Homologous Recombination Repair Cell Cycle Stage Ubiquitin Chain Homologous Recombination Pathway 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Molecular Biology ProgramMemorial Sloan Kettering Cancer CenterNew YorkUSA