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Extremophiles. 2013 Jan;17(1):171-9. doi: 10.1007/s00792-012-0506-4. Epub 2012 Dec 14.

Deinococcus radiodurans YgjD and YeaZ are involved in the repair of DNA cross-links.

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School of Life Sciences, Tokyo University of Pharmacy and Life Sciences, 1432-1 Horinouchi, Hachioji, Tokyo, 192-0392, Japan.


Orthologs of Escherichia coli ygjD and yeaZ genes are highly conserved in various organisms. The genome of the radioresistant bacterium Deinococcus radiodurans possesses single orthologs of ygjD (DR_0382) and yeaZ (DR_0756). Complete loss of either one or both genes did not result in any significant changes in cell growth efficiency, indicating that both genes are not essential for cell viability in D. radiodurans, unlike the case with other species such as E. coli, Bacillus subtilis and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Survival rates following DNA damage induced by hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)), N-methyl-N'-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine (MNNG), ultra violet (UV) radiation, γ-rays, cisplatin and mitomycin C (MMC) were compared among the wild-type strain and D. radiodurans ygjD/yeaZ null mutants. Cell viability of the null mutants did not decrease following exposure to H(2)O(2) or MNNG. In addition, the reduction in cell viability following exposure to γ-rays, UV radiation or cisplatin was marginal in the null mutants compared to the wild-type strain. Interestingly, the null mutants exhibited high sensitivity to MMC, which mainly causes interstrand DNA cross-links. The sensitivity of the null mutants to MMC was restored to that of the wild type by transformation with plasmids expressing these genes. These results suggest that D. radiodurans ygjD and yeaZ genes are involved in DNA repair and play a role in the repair of DNA cross-links.

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