Loss of DNA ligase IV prevents recognition of DNA by double-strand break repair proteins XRCC4 and XLF.
ABSTRACT: The repair of DNA double-strand breaks by nonhomologous end-joining (NHEJ) is essential for maintenance of genomic integrity and cell viability. Central to the molecular mechanism of NHEJ is DNA ligase IV/XRCC4/XLF complex, which rejoins the DNA. During adenovirus (Ad5) infection, ligase IV is targeted for degradation in a process that requires expression of the viral E1B 55k and E4 34k proteins while XRCC4 and XLF protein levels remain unchanged. We show that in Ad5-infected cells, loss of ligase IV is accompanied by loss of DNA binding by XRCC4. Expression of E1B 55k and E4 34k was sufficient to cause loss of ligase IV and loss of XRCC4 DNA binding. Using ligase IV mutant human cell lines, we determined that the absence of ligase IV, and not expression of viral proteins, coincided with inhibition of DNA binding by XRCC4. In ligase IV mutant human cell lines, DNA binding by XLF was also inhibited. Expression of both wild-type and adenylation-mutant ligase IV in ligase IV-deficient cells restored DNA binding by XRCC4. These data suggest that the intrinsic DNA-binding activities of XRCC4 and XLF may be subject to regulation and are down regulated in human cells that lack ligase IV.
Project description:DNA double-strand breaks pose a significant threat to cell survival and must be repaired. In higher eukaryotes, such damage is repaired efficiently by non-homologous end joining (NHEJ). Within this pathway, XRCC4 and XLF fulfill key roles required for end joining. Using DNA-binding and -bridging assays, combined with direct visualization, we present evidence for how XRCC4-XLF complexes robustly bridge DNA molecules. This unanticipated, DNA Ligase IV-independent bridging activity by XRCC4-XLF suggests an early role for this complex during end joining, in addition to its more well-established later functions. Mutational analysis of the XRCC4-XLF C-terminal tail regions further identifies specialized functions in complex formation and interaction with DNA and DNA Ligase IV. Based on these data and the crystal structure of an extended protein filament of XRCC4-XLF at 3.94?Å, a model for XRCC4-XLF complex function in NHEJ is presented.
Project description:DNA Ligase IV, along with its interacting partner XRCC4, are essential for repairing DNA double strand breaks by non-homologous end joining (NHEJ). Together, they complete the final ligation step resolving the DNA break. Ligase IV is regulated by XRCC4 and XLF. However, the mechanism(s) by which Ligase IV control the NHEJ reaction and other NHEJ factor(s) remains poorly characterized. Here, we show that a C-terminal region of Ligase IV (aa 620-800), which encompasses a NLS, the BRCT I, and the XRCC4 interacting region (XIR), is essential for nuclear localization of its co-factor XRCC4. In Ligase IV deficient cells, XRCC4 showed deregulated localization remaining in the cytosol even after induction of DNA double strand breaks. DNA Ligase IV was also required for efficient localization of XLF into the nucleus. Additionally, human fibroblasts that harbor hypomorphic mutations within the Ligase IV gene displayed decreased levels of XRCC4 protein, implicating that DNA Ligase IV is also regulating XRCC4 stability. Our results provide evidence for a role of DNA Ligase IV in controlling the cellular localization and protein levels of XRCC4.
Project description:In adenovirus E4 mutant infections, viral DNAs form concatemers through a process that requires host Non-homologous End Joining (NHEJ) proteins including DNA Ligase IV (LigIV). Adenovirus proteins E4 34k and E1b 55k form the substrate-selection component of an E3 ubiquitin ligase and prevent concatenation by targeting LigIV for proteasomal degradation. The mechanisms and sites involved in targeting this and other E3 ligase substrates generally are poorly-understood. Through genetic analysis, we identified the ?2 helix of one LigIV BRCT domain (BRCT-1) as essential for adenovirus-mediated degradation. Replacement of the BRCT domain of DNA ligase III (LigIII), which is resistant to degradation, with LigIV BRCT-1 does not promote degradation. A humanized mouse LigIV that possesses a BRCT-1 ?2 helix identical to the human protein, like its parent, is also resistant to adenovirus-mediated degradation. Thus, both the BRCT-1 ?2 helix and an element outside BRCT-1 are required for adenovirus-mediated degradation of LigIV.
Project description:Early region 1B 55K (E1B-55K) from adenovirus type 5 (Ad5) is a multifunctional regulator of lytic infection and contributes in vitro to complete cell transformation of primary rodent cells in combination with Ad5 E1A. Inhibition of p53 activated transcription plays a key role in processes by which E1B-55K executes its oncogenic potential. Nevertheless, additional functions of E1B-55K or further protein interactions with cellular factors of DNA repair, transcription, and apoptosis, including Mre11, PML, and Daxx, may also contribute to the transformation process. In line with previous results, we performed mutational analysis to define a Daxx interaction motif within the E1B-55K polypeptide. The results from these studies showed that E1B-55K/Daxx binding is not required for inhibition of p53-mediated transactivation or binding and degradation of cellular factors (p53/Mre11). Surprisingly, these mutants lost the ability to degrade Daxx and showed reduced transforming potential in primary rodent cells. In addition, we observed that E1B-55K lacking the SUMO-1 conjugation site (SCS/K104R) was sufficient for Daxx interaction but no longer capable of E1B-55K-dependent proteasomal degradation of the cellular factor Daxx. These results, together with the observation that E1B-55K SUMOylation is required for efficient transformation, provides evidence for the idea that SUMO-1-conjugated E1B-55K-mediated degradation of Daxx plays a key role in adenoviral oncogenic transformation. We assume that the viral protein contributes to cell transformation through the modulation of Daxx-dependent pathways. This further substantiates the assumption that further mechanisms for efficient transformation of primary cells can be separated from functions required for the inhibition of p53-stimulated transcription.
Project description:XRCC4-like factor (XLF)--also known as Cernunnos--has recently been shown to be involved in non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ), which is the main pathway for the repair of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) in mammalian cells. XLF is likely to enhance NHEJ by stimulating XRCC4-ligase IV-mediated joining of DSBs. Here, we report mechanistic details of XLF recruitment to DSBs. Live cell imaging combined with laser micro-irradiation showed that XLF is an early responder to DSBs and that Ku is essential for XLF recruitment to DSBs. Biochemical analysis showed that Ku-XLF interaction occurs on DNA and that Ku stimulates XLF binding to DNA. Unexpectedly, XRCC4 is dispensable for XLF recruitment to DSBs, although photobleaching analysis showed that XRCC4 stabilizes the binding of XLF to DSBs. Our observations showed the direct involvement of XLF in the dynamic assembly of the NHEJ machinery and provide mechanistic insights into DSB recognition.
Project description:Non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) is a major DNA double-strand break (DSB) repair pathway that functions in all phases of the cell cycle. NHEJ repairs genotoxic and physiological DSBs, such as those generated by ionizing radiation and during V(D)J recombination at antigen receptor loci, respectively. DNA end joining by NHEJ relies on the core factors Ku70, Ku80, XRCC4, and DNA Ligase IV. Additional proteins also play important roles in NHEJ. The XRCC4-like factor (XLF) participates in NHEJ through its interaction with XRCC4, and XLF deficiency in humans leads to immunodeficiency and increased sensitivity to ionizing radiation. However, XLF is dispensable for NHEJ-mediated DSB repair during V(D)J recombination in murine lymphocytes, where it may have redundant functions with other DSB repair factors. Paralog of XRCC4 and XLF (PAXX) is a recently identified NHEJ factor that has structural similarity to XRCC4 and XLF. Here we show that PAXX is also dispensable for NHEJ during V(D)J recombination and during the repair of genotoxic DSBs in lymphocytes. However, a combined deficiency of PAXX and XLF blocks NHEJ with a severity comparable to that observed in DNA Ligase IV-deficient cells. Similar to XLF, PAXX interacts with Ku through its C-terminal region, and mutations that disrupt Ku binding prevent PAXX from promoting NHEJ in XLF-deficient lymphocytes. Our findings suggest that the PAXX and XLF proteins may have redundant functions during NHEJ.
Project description:The recently characterised 299-residue human XLF/Cernunnos protein plays a crucial role in DNA repair by non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) and interacts with the XRCC4-DNA Ligase IV complex. Here, we report the crystal structure of the XLF (1-233) homodimer at 2.3 A resolution, confirming the predicted structural similarity to XRCC4. The XLF coiled-coil, however, is shorter than that of XRCC4 and undergoes an unexpected reverse in direction giving rise to a short distorted four helical bundle and a C-terminal helical structure wedged between the coiled-coil and head domain. The existence of a dimer as the major species is confirmed by size-exclusion chromatography, analytical ultracentrifugation, small-angle X-ray scattering and other biophysical methods. We show that the XLF structure is not easily compatible with a proposed XRCC4:XLF heterodimer. However, we demonstrate interactions between dimers of XLF and XRCC4 by surface plasmon resonance and analyse these in terms of surface properties, amino-acid conservation and mutations in immunodeficient patients. Our data are most consistent with head-to-head interactions in a 2:2:1 XRCC4:XLF:Ligase IV complex.
Project description:The double-strand DNA break repair pathway, non-homologous DNA end joining (NHEJ), is distinctive for the flexibility of its nuclease, polymerase and ligase activities. Here we find that the joining of ends by XRCC4-ligase IV is markedly influenced by the terminal sequence, and a steric hindrance model can account for this. XLF (Cernunnos) stimulates the joining of both incompatible DNA ends and compatible DNA ends at physiologic concentrations of Mg2+, but only of incompatible DNA ends at higher concentrations of Mg2+, suggesting charge neutralization between the two DNA ends within the ligase complex. XRCC4-DNA ligase IV has the distinctive ability to ligate poly-dT single-stranded DNA and long dT overhangs in a Ku- and XLF-independent manner, but not other homopolymeric DNA. The dT preference of the ligase is interesting given the sequence bias of the NHEJ polymerase. These distinctive properties of the XRCC4-DNA ligase IV complex explain important aspects of its in vivo roles.
Project description:DNA double strand breaks (DSBs) are one of the most deleterious DNA lesions that promote cell death, genomic instability and carcinogenesis. The two major cellular mechanisms that repair DSBs are Nonhomologous End-Joining (NHEJ) and Homologous Recombination Repair (HRR). NHEJ is the predominant pathway, in which XLF (also called Cernunnos) is a key player. Patients with XLF mutation exhibit microcephaly, lymphopenia, and growth retardation, and are immunodeficient and radiosensitive. During NHEJ, XLF interacts with XRCC4-Ligase IV, stimulates its ligase activity, and forms DNA-binding filaments of alternating XLF and XRCC4 dimers that may serve to align broken DNA and promote ligation of noncomplementary ends. Despite its central role in NHEJ, the effects of XLF deficiency are surprisingly variable in different biological contexts, and different individual cell lines. This review summarizes the role of XLF in NHEJ, and the unexpected complexity of its interplay with other repair factors in supporting radiosurvival and V(D)J recombination.
Project description:The classic nonhomologous end-joining (c-NHEJ) pathway is largely responsible for repairing double-strand breaks (DSBs) in mammalian cells. XLF stimulates the XRCC4/DNA ligase IV complex by an unknown mechanism. XLF interacts with XRCC4 to form filaments of alternating XRCC4 and XLF dimers that bridge DNA ends in vitro, providing a mechanism by which XLF might stimulate ligation. Here, we characterize two XLF mutants that do not interact with XRCC4 and cannot form filaments or bridge DNA in vitro. One mutant is fully sufficient in stimulating ligation by XRCC4/Lig4 in vitro; the other is not. This separation-of-function mutant (which must function as an XLF homodimer) fully complements the c-NHEJ deficits of some XLF-deficient cell strains but not others, suggesting a variable requirement for XRCC4/XLF interaction in living cells. To determine whether the lack of XRCC4/XLF interaction (and potential bridging) can be compensated for by other factors, candidate repair factors were disrupted in XLF- or XRCC4-deficient cells. The loss of either ATM or the newly described XRCC4/XLF-like factor, PAXX, accentuates the requirement for XLF. However, in the case of ATM/XLF loss (but not PAXX/XLF loss), this reflects a greater requirement for XRCC4/XLF interaction.