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Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2017 Oct 5;372(1731). pii: 20160291. doi: 10.1098/rstb.2016.0291.

And yet, it moves: nuclear and chromatin dynamics of a heterochromatic double-strand break.

Author information

1
Department of Molecular and Computational Biology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA.
2
Department of Molecular and Computational Biology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA chiolo@usc.edu.

Abstract

Heterochromatin is mostly composed of repeated DNA sequences prone to aberrant recombination. How cells maintain the stability of these sequences during double-strand break (DSB) repair has been a long-standing mystery. Studies in Drosophila cells revealed that faithful homologous recombination repair of heterochromatic DSBs relies on the striking relocalization of repair sites to the nuclear periphery before Rad51 recruitment and repair progression. Here, we summarize our current understanding of this response, including the molecular mechanisms involved, and conserved pathways in mammalian cells. We will highlight important similarities with pathways identified in budding yeast for repair of other types of repeated sequences, including rDNA and short telomeres. We will also discuss the emerging role of chromatin composition and regulation in heterochromatin repair progression. Together, these discoveries challenged previous assumptions that repair sites are substantially static in multicellular eukaryotes, that heterochromatin is largely inert in the presence of DSBs, and that silencing and compaction in this domain are obstacles to repair.This article is part of the themed issue 'Chromatin modifiers and remodellers in DNA repair and signalling'.

KEYWORDS:

Drosophila; genome stability; heterochromatin repair; homologous recombination; nuclear architecture; repeated DNA sequences

PMID:
28847828
PMCID:
PMC5577469
DOI:
10.1098/rstb.2016.0291
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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