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FEBS Lett. 2011 Sep 16;585(18):2786-94. doi: 10.1016/j.febslet.2011.04.044. Epub 2011 Apr 28.

Roles of sequential ubiquitination of PCNA in DNA-damage tolerance.

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  • 1College of Life Sciences, Capital Normal University, Beijing 100048, China.


Living organisms not only repair DNA damage induced by environmental agents and endogenous cellular metabolites, but have also developed mechanisms to survive in the presence of otherwise lethal lesions. DNA-damage tolerance (DDT) is considered such a mechanism that resumes DNA synthesis in the presence of replication-blocking lesions. Recent studies revealed that DDT in budding yeast is achieved through sequential ubiquitination of DNA polymerase processivity factor, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA). It is generally believed that monoubiquitinated PCNA promotes translesion DNA synthesis, whereas polyubiquitinated PCNA mediates an error-free mode of lesion bypass. This review will discuss how ubiquitinated PCNA modulates different means of lesion bypass.

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