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Mutat Res. 1996 Oct 25;357(1-2):115-21.

Effect of hydroxyurea and normal plasma on DNA synthesis in lymphocytes from Fanconi anemia patients.

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Genetics Department, Instituto Nacional de Pediatría, México D.F., Mexico.


Fanconi anemia (FA) is characterized at the cellular level by a high frequency of spontaneous chromosomal aberrations; crosslinking agents cause an abnormal increase in the frequency of chromosomal damage, and semiconservative DNA synthesis is severely inhibited. Deoxyribonucleotides are needed in both semiconservative and repair DNA synthesis. To investigate the involvement of deoxyribonucleotide pools in the inhibition of DNA synthesis in FA, we evaluated the effect on FA lymphocytes of hydroxyurea (HU), an inhibitor of ribonucleotide reductase which is known to alter the intracellular levels of deoxyribonucleotides. To achieve this goal, lymphocyte cultures of 4 FA patients and 4 normal individuals were used. Cultures were treated with HU and/or mitomycin C and normal human plasma. All cultures were processed to detect the number of DNA synthesizing nuclei by autoradiography. Scoring of 2000 nuclei for each kind of culture every 6 h in the last 24 h of incubation showed that, in long incubation periods, DNA synthesis in FA is largely inhibited by HU and this hypersensitivity may be partially decreased by addition of normal human plasma. It is known that recovery from damage induced by HU involves several enzymes such as flavin oxido-reductase, superoxide dismutase and catalase which are involved in the production or scavenging of O2 radicals; FA cells are deficient in the detoxification of oxygen and this could explain the response of FA cells to HU.

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