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Mol Cell. 2007 Jul 6;27(1):149-62.

SIRT1 regulates the function of the Nijmegen breakage syndrome protein.

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H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, FL 33612, USA.


MRE11-RAD50-NBS1 (MRN) is a conserved nuclease complex that exhibits properties of a DNA damage sensor and is critical in regulating cellular responses to DNA double-strand breaks. NBS1, which is mutated in the human genetic disease Nijmegen breakage syndrome, serves as the regulatory subunit of MRN. Phosphorylation of NBS1 by the ATM kinase is necessary for both activation of the S phase checkpoint and for efficient DNA damage repair response. Here, we report that NBS1 is an acetylated protein and that the acetylation level is tightly regulated by the SIRT1 deacetylase. SIRT1 associates with the MRN complex and, importantly, maintains NBS1 in a hypoacetylated state, which is required for ionizing radiation-induced NBS1 Ser343 phosphorylation. Our results demonstrate the presence of crosstalk between two different posttranslational modifications in NBS1 and strongly suggest that deacetylation of NBS1 by SIRT1 plays a key role in the dynamic regulation of the DNA damage response and in the maintenance of genomic stability.

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