Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Protein Helps Distinguish Chromosome Ends From DNA Breaks

Date:
September 20, 2009
Source:
Stowers Institute for Medical Research
Summary:
Researchers have demonstrated how human cells protect chromosome ends from misguided repairs that can lead to cancer. The work follows the team's 2007 in vitro demonstration of the role of the hRAP1 protein in preventing chromosome ends from being fused to new DNA breaks.

The Stowers Institute's Baumann Lab has demonstrated how human cells protect chromosome ends from misguided repairs that can lead to cancer. The work, published in The EMBO Journal, a publication of the European Molecular Biology Organization, follows the team's 2007 in vitro demonstration of the role of the hRAP1 protein in preventing chromosome ends from being fused to new DNA breaks.

Chromosomes are linear. Their ends (called telomeres) should look like DNA breaks to the proteins that repair them. But somehow, cells are able to distinguish chromosome ends from DNA breaks. In this work, the team demonstrated that the human RAP1 protein plays a key role in preventing chromosome ends from being fused to new DNA breaks. Chromosome end fusions result in genomic instability, which can cause cancer. These findings suggest that RAP1 plays a critical role in cancer prevention in humans.

"Protecting naturally occurring chromosome ends from erosion and fusions may increase longevity and reduce cancer risk," said Jay Sarthy, formerly a graduate student in the Baumann Lab and lead author on the paper. "A protein that protects chromosome ends may provide an attractive target for drugs that can help to stave off aging and cancer."

"Our finding has paved the way to investigate the mechanism by which hRAP1 protects chromosome ends from undergoing fusions," said Peter Baumann, Ph.D., Associate Investigator and senior author on the publication. "This research contributes to our understanding of chromosome stability and, thereby, tumor suppression and cancer. If partial loss of hRAP1 function causes chromosomal instability, as suggested by our current work, then mutations in RAP1 may be linked to a predisposition for cancer."

Identifying hRAP1 as a critical protector of chromosome ends was an important step in understanding how telomeres are protected from DNA repair. The Baumann Lab will move forward in their efforts to understand what hRAP1 does to protect telomeres from repair — the proteins with which it interacts, and how it inactivates DNA repair specifically at chromosome ends.

Additional contributing authors from the Stowers Institute include Nancy Bae, Ph.D., formerly a Postdoctoral Research Associate; and Jonathan Scrafford, formerly a Summer Scholar.

Dr. Baumann is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Early Career Scientist. He is also an Associate Professor in the Department of Molecular and Integrative Physiology at The University of Kansas School of Medicine.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Stowers Institute for Medical Research. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Stowers Institute for Medical Research. "Protein Helps Distinguish Chromosome Ends From DNA Breaks." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 September 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090917144129.htm>.
Stowers Institute for Medical Research. (2009, September 20). Protein Helps Distinguish Chromosome Ends From DNA Breaks. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090917144129.htm
Stowers Institute for Medical Research. "Protein Helps Distinguish Chromosome Ends From DNA Breaks." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090917144129.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Newsy (July 30, 2014) The Center for Science in the Public Interest released its 2014 list of single meals with whopping calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins