Cdk1 participates in BRCA1-dependent S phase checkpoint control in response to DNA damage.
ABSTRACT: Cdk2 and cdk1 are individually dispensable for cell-cycle progression in cancer cell lines because they are able to compensate for one another. However, shRNA-mediated depletion of cdk1 alone or small molecule cdk1 inhibition abrogated S phase cell-cycle arrest and the phosphorylation of a subset of ATR/ATM targets after DNA damage. Loss of DNA damage-induced checkpoint control was caused by a reduction in formation of BRCA1-containing foci. Mutation of BRCA1 at S1497 and S1189/S1191 resulted in loss of cdk1-mediated phosphorylation and also compromised formation of BRCA1-containing foci. Abrogation of checkpoint control after cdk1 depletion or inhibition in non-small-cell lung cancer cells sensitized them to DNA-damaging agents. Conversely, reduced cdk1 activity caused more potent G2/M arrest in nontransformed cells and antagonized the response to subsequent DNA damage. Cdk1 inhibition may therefore selectively sensitize BRCA1-proficient cancer cells to DNA-damaging treatments by disrupting BRCA1 function.
Project description:TRF1, a duplex telomeric DNA-binding protein, plays an important role in telomere metabolism. We have previously reported that a fraction of endogenous TRF1 can stably exist free of telomere chromatin when it is phosphorylated at T371 by Cdk1; however, the role of this telomere-free (pT371)TRF1 has yet to be fully characterized. Here we show that phosphorylated (pT371)TRF1 is recruited to sites of DNA damage, forming damage-induced foci in response to ionizing radiation (IR), etoposide and camptothecin. We find that IR-induced (pT371)TRF1 foci formation is dependent on the ATM- and Mre11/Rad50/Nbs1-mediated DNA damage response. While loss of functional BRCA1 impairs the formation of IR-induced (pT371)TRF1 foci, depletion of either 53BP1 or Rif1 stimulates IR-induced (pT371)TRF1 foci formation. In addition, we show that TRF1 depletion or the lack of its phosphorylation at T371 impairs DNA end resection and repair of nontelomeric DNA double-strand breaks by homologous recombination. The lack of TRF1 phosphorylation at T371 also hampers the activation of the G2/M checkpoint and sensitizes cells to PARP inhibition, IR and camptothecin. Collectively, these results reveal a novel but important function of phosphorylated (pT371)TRF1 in facilitating DNA double-strand break repair and the maintenance of genome integrity.
Project description:Germ-line mutations in breast cancer 1, early onset (BRCA1) result in predisposition to breast and ovarian cancer. BRCA1-mutated tumors show genomic instability, mainly as a consequence of impaired recombinatorial DNA repair. Here we identify p53-binding protein 1 (53BP1) as an essential factor for sustaining the growth arrest induced by Brca1 deletion. Depletion of 53BP1 abrogates the ATM-dependent checkpoint response and G2 cell-cycle arrest triggered by the accumulation of DNA breaks in Brca1-deleted cells. This effect of 53BP1 is specific to BRCA1 function, as 53BP1 depletion did not alleviate proliferation arrest or checkpoint responses in Brca2-deleted cells. Notably, loss of 53BP1 partially restores the homologous-recombination defect of Brca1-deleted cells and reverts their hypersensitivity to DNA-damaging agents. We find reduced 53BP1 expression in subsets of sporadic triple-negative and BRCA-associated breast cancers, indicating the potential clinical implications of our findings.
Project description:Activation of Checkpoint kinase 1 (Chk1) following DNA damage mediates cell cycle arrest to prevent cells with damaged DNA from entering mitosis. Here we provide a high-resolution analysis of cells as they undergo S- and G?-checkpoint bypass in response to Chk1 inhibition with the selective Chk1 inhibitor GNE-783. Within 4-8 h of Chk1 inhibition following gemcitabine induced DNA damage, cells with both sub-4N and 4N DNA content prematurely enter mitosis. Coincident with premature transition into mitosis, levels of DNA damage dramatically increase and chromosomes condense and attempt to align along the metaphase plate. Despite an attempt to congress at the metaphase plate, chromosomes rapidly fragment and lose connection to the spindle microtubules. Gemcitabine mediated DNA damage promotes the formation of Rad51 foci; however, while Chk1 inhibition does not disrupt Rad51 foci that are formed in response to gemcitabine, these foci are lost as cells progress into mitosis. Premature entry into mitosis requires the Aurora, Cdk1/2 and Plk1 kinases and even though caspase-2 and -3 are activated upon mitotic exit, they are not required for cell death. Interestingly, p53, but not p21, deficiency enables checkpoint bypass and chemo-potentiation. Finally, we uncover a differential role for the Wee-1 checkpoint kinase in response to DNA damage, as Wee-1, but not Chk1, plays a more prominent role in the maintenance of S- and G?-checkpoints in p53 proficient cells.
Project description:Cells that are deficient in homologous recombination, such as those that lack functional breast cancer-associated 1 (BRCA1) or BRCA2, are hypersensitive to inhibition of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP). However, BRCA-deficient tumors represent only a small fraction of adult cancers, which might restrict the therapeutic utility of PARP inhibitor monotherapy. Cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (Cdk1) phosphorylates BRCA1, and this is essential for efficient formation of BRCA1 foci. Here we show that depletion or inhibition of Cdk1 compromises the ability of cells to repair DNA by homologous recombination. Combined inhibition of Cdk1 and PARP in BRCA-wild-type cancer cells resulted in reduced colony formation, delayed growth of human tumor xenografts and tumor regression with prolonged survival in a mouse model of lung adenocarcinoma. Inhibition of Cdk1 did not sensitize nontransformed cells or tissues to inhibition of PARP. Because reduced Cdk1 activity impaired BRCA1 function and consequently, repair by homologous recombination, inhibition of Cdk1 represents a plausible strategy for expanding the utility of PARP inhibitors to BRCA-proficient cancers.
Project description:The DNA damage checkpoint, when activated in response to genotoxic damage during S phase, arrests cells in G2 phase of the cell cycle. ATM, ATR, Chk1 and Chk2 kinases are the main effectors of this checkpoint pathway. The checkpoint kinases prevent the onset of mitosis by eliciting well characterized inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdk1. Since Cdk1 is required for the recruitment of condensin, it is thought that upon DNA damage the checkpoint also indirectly blocks chromosome condensation via Cdk1 inhibition. Here we report that the G2 damage checkpoint prevents stable recruitment of the chromosome-packaging-machinery components condensin complex I and II onto the chromatin even in the presence of an active Cdk1. DNA damage-induced inhibition of condensin subunit recruitment is mediated specifically by the Chk2 kinase, implying that the condensin complexes are targeted by the checkpoint in response to DNA damage, independently of Cdk1 inactivation. Thus, the G2 checkpoint directly prevents stable recruitment of condensin complexes to actively prevent chromosome compaction during G2 arrest, presumably to ensure efficient repair of the genomic damage.
Project description:MORC family CW-type zinc finger 2 (MORC2) is an oncogenic chromatin-remodeling enzyme with an emerging role in DNA repair. Here, we report a novel function for MORC2 in cell-cycle checkpoint control through an acetylation-dependent mechanism. MORC2 is acetylated by the acetyltransferase NAT10 at lysine 767 (K767Ac) and this process is counteracted by the deacetylase SIRT2 under unperturbed conditions. DNA-damaging chemotherapeutic agents and ionizing radiation stimulate MORC2 K767Ac through enhancing the interaction between MORC2 and NAT10. Notably, acetylated MORC2 binds to histone H3 phosphorylation at threonine 11 (H3T11P) and is essential for DNA damage-induced reduction of H3T11P and transcriptional repression of its downstream target genes CDK1 and Cyclin B1, thus contributing to DNA damage-induced G2 checkpoint activation. Chemical inhibition or depletion of NAT10 or expression of an acetylation-defective MORC2 (K767R) forces cells to pass through G2 checkpoint, resulting in hypersensitivity to DNA-damaging agents. Moreover, MORC2 acetylation levels are associated with elevated NAT10 expression in clinical breast tumor samples. Together, these findings uncover a previously unrecognized role for MORC2 in regulating DNA damage-induced G2 checkpoint through NAT10-mediated acetylation and provide a potential therapeutic strategy to sensitize breast cancer cells to DNA-damaging chemotherapy and radiotherapy by targeting NAT10.
Project description:The G2/M checkpoint coordinates DNA replication with mitosis and thereby prevents chromosome segregation in the presence of unreplicated or damaged DNA Here, we show that the RNA-binding protein TIAR is essential for the G2/M checkpoint and that TIAR accumulates in nuclear foci in late G2 and prophase in cells suffering from replication stress. These foci, which we named G2/M transition granules (GMGs), occur at low levels in normally cycling cells and are strongly induced by replication stress. In addition to replication stress response proteins, GMGs contain factors involved in RNA metabolism as well as CDK1. Depletion of TIAR accelerates mitotic entry and leads to chromosomal instability in response to replication stress, in a manner that can be alleviated by the concomitant depletion of Cdc25B or inhibition of CDK1. Since TIAR retains CDK1 in GMGs and attenuates CDK1 activity, we propose that the assembly of GMGs may represent a so far unrecognized mechanism that contributes to the activation of the G2/M checkpoint in mammalian cells.
Project description:Recruitment of the homologous recombination machinery to sites of double-strand breaks is a cell cycle-regulated event requiring entry into S phase and CDK1 activity. Here, we demonstrate that the central recombination protein, Rad52, forms foci independent of DNA replication, and its recruitment requires B-type cyclin/CDK1 activity. Induction of the intra-S-phase checkpoint by hydroxyurea (HU) inhibits Rad52 focus formation in response to ionizing radiation. This inhibition is dependent upon Mec1/Tel1 kinase activity, as HU-treated cells form Rad52 foci in the presence of the PI3 kinase inhibitor caffeine. These Rad52 foci colocalize with foci formed by the replication clamp PCNA. These results indicate that Mec1 activity inhibits the recruitment of Rad52 to both sites of DNA damage and stalled replication forks during the intra-S-phase checkpoint. We propose that B-type cyclins promote the recruitment of Rad52 to sites of DNA damage, whereas Mec1 inhibits spurious recombination at stalled replication forks.
Project description:Advanced ovarian cancer is an incurable disease. Thus, novel therapies are required. We wished to identify new therapeutic targets for ovarian cancer. ShRNA screen performed in 42 ovarian cancer cell lines identified the centriolar replication factor STIL as an essential gene for ovarian cancer cells. This was verified in-vivo in orthotopic human ovarian cancer mouse models. STIL depletion by administration of siRNA in neutral liposomes resulted in robust anti-tumor effect that was further enhanced in combination with cisplatin. Consistent with this finding, STIL depletion enhanced the extent of DNA double strand breaks caused by DNA damaging agents. This was associated with centrosomal depletion, ongoing genomic instability and enhanced formation of micronuclei. Interestingly, the ongoing DNA damage was not associated with reduced DNA repair. Indeed, we observed that depletion of STIL enhanced canonical homologous recombination repair and increased BRCA1 and RAD51 foci in response to DNA double strand breaks. Thus, inhibition of STIL significantly enhances the efficacy of DNA damaging chemotherapeutic drugs in treatment of ovarian cancer.
Project description:Akt is perhaps the most frequently activated oncoprotein in human cancers. Overriding cell cycle checkpoint in combination with the inhibition of apoptosis are two principal requirements for predisposition to cancer. Here we show that the activation of Akt is sufficient to promote these two principal processes, by inhibiting Chk1 activation with concomitant inhibition of apoptosis. These activities of Akt cannot be recapitulated by the knockdown of Chk1 alone or by overexpression of Bcl2. Rather the combination of Chk1 knockdown and Bcl2 overexpression is required to recapitulate Akt activities. Akt was shown to directly phosphorylate Chk1. However, we found that Chk1 mutants in the Akt phosphorylation sites behave like wild-type Chk1 in mediating G2 arrest, suggesting that the phosphorylation of Chk1 by Akt is either dispensable for Chk1 activity or insufficient by itself to exert an effect on Chk1 activity. Here we report a new mechanism by which Akt affects G2 cell cycle arrest. We show that Akt inhibits BRCA1 function that induces G2 cell cycle arrest. Akt prevents the translocation of BRCA1 to DNA damage foci and, thereby, inhibiting the activation of Chk1 following DNA damage.