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Mol Cell. 2005 May 27;18(5):499-505.

Trading places: how do DNA polymerases switch during translesion DNA synthesis?

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Laboratory of Molecular Pathology, Department of Pathology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas 75390, USA.

Erratum in

  • Mol Cell. 2005 Jul 1;19(1):143.


The replicative bypass of base damage in DNA (translesion DNA synthesis [TLS]) is a ubiquitous mechanism for relieving arrested DNA replication. The process requires multiple polymerase switching events during which the high-fidelity DNA polymerase in the replication machinery arrested at the primer terminus is replaced by one or more polymerases that are specialized for TLS. When replicative bypass is fully completed, the primer terminus is once again occupied by high-fidelity polymerases in the replicative machinery. This review addresses recent advances in our understanding of DNA polymerase switching during TLS in bacteria such as E. coli and in lower and higher eukaryotes.

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