NBS1 mediates ATR-dependent RPA hyperphosphorylation following replication-fork stall and collapse.
ABSTRACT: Post-translational phosphorylation of proteins provides a mechanism for cells to switch on or off many diverse processes, including responses to replication stress. Replication-stress-induced phosphorylation enables the rapid activation of numerous proteins involved in DNA replication, DNA repair and cell cycle checkpoints, including replication protein A (RPA). Here, we report that hydroxyurea (HU)-induced RPA phosphorylation requires both NBS1 (NBN) and NBS1 phosphorylation. Transfection of both phosphospecific and nonphosphospecific anti-NBS1 antibodies blocked hyperphosphorylation of RPA in HeLa cells. Nijmegen breakage syndrome (NBS) cells stably transfected with an empty vector or with S343A-NBS1 or S278A/S343A phospho-mutants were unable to hyperphosphorylate RPA in DNA-damage-associated foci following HU treatment. The stable transfection of fully functional NBS1 in NBS cells restored RPA hyperphosphorylation. Retention of ATR on chromatin in both NBS cells and in NBS cells expressing S278A/S343A NBS1 mutants decreased after DNA damage, suggesting that ATR is the kinase responsible for RPA phosphorylation. The importance of RPA hyperphosphorylation is demonstrated by the ability of cells expressing a phospho-mutant form of RPA32 (RPA2) to suppress and delay HU-induced apoptosis. Our findings suggest that RPA hyperphosphorylation requires NBS1 and is important for the cellular response to DNA damage.
Project description:Nijmegen breakage syndrome (NBS) is characterised by microcephaly, developmental delay, characteristic facial features, immunodeficiency and radiosensitivity. Nbs1, the protein defective in NBS, functions in ataxia telangiectasia mutated protein (ATM)-dependent signalling likely facilitating ATM phosphorylation events. While NBS shares overlapping characteristics with ataxia telangiectasia, it also has features overlapping with ATR-Seckel (ATR: ataxia-telangiectasia and Rad3-related protein) syndrome, a subclass of Seckel syndrome mutated in ATR. We show that Nbs1 also facilitates ATR-dependent phosphorylation. NBS cell lines show a similar defect in ATR phosphorylation of Chk1, c-jun and p-53 in response to UV irradiation- and hydroxyurea (HU)-induced replication stalling. They are also impaired in ubiquitination of FANCD2 after HU treatment, which is ATR dependent. Following HU-induced replication arrest, NBS and ATR-Seckel cells show similarly impaired G2/M checkpoint arrest and an impaired ability to restart DNA synthesis at stalled replication forks. Moreover, NBS cells fail to retain ATR in the nucleus following HU treatment and extraction. Our findings suggest that Nbs1 functions in both ATR- and ATM-dependent signalling. We propose that the NBS clinical features represent the result of these combined defects.
Project description:The checkpoint kinase Chk2 has a key role in delaying cell cycle progression in response to DNA damage. Upon activation by low-dose ionizing radiation (IR), which occurs in an ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM)-dependent manner, Chk2 can phosphorylate the mitosis-inducing phosphatase Cdc25C on an inhibitory site, blocking entry into mitosis, and p53 on a regulatory site, causing G(1) arrest. Here we show that the ATM-dependent activation of Chk2 by gamma- radiation requires Nbs1, the gene product involved in the Nijmegen breakage syndrome (NBS), a disorder that shares with AT a variety of phenotypic defects including chromosome fragility, radiosensitivity, and radioresistant DNA synthesis. Thus, whereas in normal cells Chk2 undergoes a time-dependent increased phosphorylation and induction of catalytic activity against Cdc25C, in NBS cells null for Nbs1 protein, Chk2 phosphorylation and activation are both defective. Importantly, these defects in NBS cells can be complemented by reintroduction of wild-type Nbs1, but neither by a carboxy-terminal deletion mutant of Nbs1 at amino acid 590, unable to form a complex with and to transport Mre11 and Rad50 in the nucleus, nor by an Nbs1 mutated at Ser343 (S343A), the ATM phosphorylation site. Chk2 nuclear expression is unaffected in NBS cells, hence excluding a mislocalization as the cause of failed Chk2 activation in Nbs1-null cells. Interestingly, the impaired Chk2 function in NBS cells correlates with the inability, unlike normal cells, to stop entry into mitosis immediately after irradiation, a checkpoint abnormality that can be corrected by introduction of the wild-type but not the S343A mutant form of Nbs1. Altogether, these findings underscore the crucial role of a functional Nbs1 complex in Chk2 activation and suggest that checkpoint defects in NBS cells may result from the inability to activate Chk2.
Project description:Failure to reactivate stalled or collapsed DNA replication forks is a potential source of genomic instability. Homologous recombination (HR) is a major mechanism for repairing the DNA damage resulting from replication arrest. The single-strand DNA (ssDNA)-binding protein, replication protein A (RPA), plays a major role in multiple processes of DNA metabolism. However, the role of RPA2 hyperphosphorylation, which occurs in response to DNA damage, had been unclear. Here, we show that hyperphosphorylated RPA2 associates with ssDNA and recombinase protein Rad51 in response to replication arrest by hydroxyurea (HU) treatment. In addition, RPA2 hyperphosphorylation is critical for Rad51 recruitment and HR-mediated repair following HU. However, RPA2 hyperphosphorylation is not essential for both ionizing radiation (IR)-induced Rad51 foci formation and I-Sce-I endonuclease-stimulated HR. Moreover, we show that expression of a phosphorylation-deficient mutant of RPA2 leads to increased chromosomal aberrations following HU treatment but not after exposure to IR. Finally, we demonstrate that loss of RPA2 hyperphosphorylation results in a loss of viability when cells are confronted with replication stress whereas cells expressing hyperphosphorylation-defective RPA2 or wild-type RPA2 have a similar sensitivity to IR. Thus, our data suggest that RPA2 hyperphosphorylation plays a critical role in maintenance of genomic stability and cell survival after a DNA replication block via promotion of HR.
Project description:Nbs1, a member of the Mre11-RAD50-Nbs1 complex, is phosphorylated by ATM, the product of the ataxia-telangiectasia mutated gene and a member of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase-related family of serine-threonine kinases, in response to DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) to regulate DNA damage checkpoints. Here we show that BCR/ABL stimulated Nbs1 expression by induction of c-Myc-dependent transactivation and protection from caspase-dependent degradation. BCR/ABL-related fusion tyrosine kinases (FTKs) such as TEL/JAK2, TEL/PDGFbetaR, TEL/ABL, TEL/TRKC, BCR/FGFR1, and NPM/ALK as well as interleukin 3 (IL-3), granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), and stem cell factor (SCF) also stimulated Nbs1 expression. Enhanced ATM kinase-dependent phosphorylation of Nbs1 on serine 343 (S343) in response to genotoxic treatment was detected in leukemia cells expressing BCR/ABL and other FTKs in comparison to normal counterparts stimulated with IL-3, GM-CSF, and SCF. Expression of Nbs1-S343A mutant disrupted the intra-S-phase checkpoint, decreased homologous recombinational repair (HRR) activity, down-regulated XIAP expression, and sensitized BCR/ABL-positive cells to cytotoxic drugs. Interestingly, inhibition of Nbs1 phosphorylation by S343A mutant enhanced the antileukemia effect of the combination of imatinib and genotoxic agent.
Project description:The ATM- and Rad3-related (ATR) kinase is a master regulator of the DNA damage response, yet how ATR is activated toward different substrates is still poorly understood. Here, we show that ATR phosphorylates Chk1 and RPA32 through distinct mechanisms at replication-associated DNA double-stranded breaks (DSBs). In contrast to the rapid phosphorylation of Chk1, RPA32 is progressively phosphorylated by ATR at Ser33 during DSB resection prior to the phosphorylation of Ser4/Ser8 by DNA-PKcs. Surprisingly, despite its reliance on ATR and TopBP1, substantial RPA32 Ser33 phosphorylation occurs in a Rad17-independent but Nbs1-dependent manner in vivo and in vitro. Importantly, the role of Nbs1 in RPA32 phosphorylation can be separated from ATM activation and DSB resection, and it is dependent upon the interaction of Nbs1 with RPA. An Nbs1 mutant that is unable to bind RPA fails to support proper recovery of collapsed replication forks, suggesting that the Nbs1-mediated mode of ATR activation is important for the repair of replication-associated DSBs.
Project description:Nijmegen breakage syndrome (NBS) is characterized by radiation hypersensitivity, chromosomal instability, and predisposition to cancer. Nbs1, the NBS protein, forms a tight complex with Mre11 and Rad50, and these interactions contribute to proper double-strand break repair. The simian virus 40 (SV40) oncoprotein, large T antigen (T), also interacts with Nbs1, and T-containing cells experience chromosomal hyperreplication in a manner dependent on T/Nbs1 complex formation. A substantial fraction of NBS-deficient fibroblasts reinitiate DNA replication in discrete regions, and wild-type Nbs1 corrects this defect. Similarly, synthesis of an N-terminal Nbs1 fragment induced DNA rereplication and tetraploidy, in NBS-deficient but not NBS-proficient cells. Moreover, SV40 origin-containing DNA hyperreplicated in T-containing NBS-deficient cells by comparison with T-containing, Nbs1-reconstituted derivatives. Thus, Nbs1 suppresses rereplication of cellular DNA and SV40 origin-containing replicons, and T targets Nbs1, thereby enhancing the yield of new SV40 genomes during viral DNA replication.
Project description:Eukaryotic genomic integrity is safeguarded by cell cycle checkpoints and DNA repair pathways, collectively known as the DNA damage response, wherein replication protein A (RPA) is a key regulator playing multiple critical roles. The genotoxic insult-induced phosphorylation of the 32-kDa subunit of human RPA (RPA32), most notably the ATM/ATR-dependent phosphorylation at T21 and S33, acts to suppress DNA replication and recruit other checkpoint/repair proteins to the DNA lesions. It is not clear, however, how the DNA damage-responsive function of phosphorylated RPA is attenuated and how the replication-associated activity of the unphosphorylated form of RPA is restored when cells start to resume the normal cell cycle. We report here that in cells recovering from hydroxyurea (HU)-induced genotoxic stress, RPA32 is dephosphorylated by the serine/threonine protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A). Interference with PP2A catalytic activity causes persistent RPA32 phosphorylation and increased HU sensitivity. The PP2A catalytic subunit binds to RPA following DNA damage and can dephosphorylate RPA32 in vitro. Cells expressing a RPA32 persistent phosphorylation mimetic exhibit normal checkpoint activation and reenter the cell cycle normally after recovery but display a pronounced defect in the repair of DNA breaks. These data indicate that PP2A-mediated RPA32 dephosphorylation is required for the efficient DNA damage repair.
Project description:The replication protein A (RPA)-ssDNA complex formed at arrested replication forks recruits key proteins to activate the ATR-CHK1 signalling cascade. When CHK1 is inhibited during DNA replication stress, RPA2 is extensively hyperphosphorylated. Here, we investigated the role of RPA2 hyperphosphorylation in the fate of cells when CHK1 is inhibited. We show that proteins normally involved in DNA repair (RAD51) or control of RPA phosphorylation (the PP4 protein phosphatase complex) are not recruited to the genome after treatment with CHK1 and DNA synthesis inhibitors. This is not due to RPA2 hyperphosphorylation as suppression of this response does not restore loading suggesting that recruitment requires active CHK1. To determine whether RPA2 hyperphosphorylation protects stalled forks from collapse or induction of apoptosis in CHK1 inhibited cells during replication stress, cells expressing RPA2 genes mutated at key phosphorylation sites were characterized. Mutant RPA2 rescued cells from RPA2 depletion and reduced the level of apoptosis induced by treatment with CHK1 and replication inhibitors however the incidence of double strand breaks was not affected. Our data indicate that RPA2 hyperphosphorylation promotes cell death during replication stress when CHK1 function is compromised but does not appear to be essential for replication fork integrity.
Project description:The Mre11/Rad50/Nbs1 complex (MRN) plays an essential role in the S-phase checkpoint. Cells derived from patients with Nijmegen breakage syndrome and ataxia telangiectasia-like disorder undergo radioresistant DNA synthesis (RDS), failing to suppress DNA replication in response to ionizing radiation (IR). How MRN affects DNA replication to control the S-phase checkpoint, however, remains unclear. We demonstrate that MRN directly interacts with replication protein A (RPA) in unperturbed cells and that the interaction is regulated by cyclin-dependent kinases. We also show that this interaction is needed for MRN to correctly localize to replication centers. Abolishing the interaction of Mre11 with RPA leads to pronounced RDS without affecting phosphorylation of Nbs1 or SMC1 following IR. Moreover, MRN is recruited to sites at or adjacent to replication origins by RPA and acts there to inhibit new origin firing upon IR. These studies suggest a direct role of MRN at origin-proximal sites to control DNA replication initiation in response to DNA damage, thereby providing an important mechanism underlying the intra-S-phase checkpoint in mammalian cells.
Project description:Replication protein A (RPA) is a heterotrimeric protein consisting of RPA1, RPA2, and RPA3 subunits that binds to single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) with high affinity. The response to replication stress requires the recruitment of RPA and the MRE11-RAD50-NBS1 (MRN) complex. RPA bound to ssDNA stabilizes stalled replication forks by recruiting checkpoint proteins involved in fork stabilization. MRN can bind DNA structures encountered at stalled or collapsed replication forks, such as ssDNA-double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) junctions or breaks, and promote the restart of DNA replication. Here, we demonstrate that RPA2 phosphorylation regulates the assembly of DNA damage-induced RPA and MRN foci. Using purified proteins, we observe a direct interaction between RPA with both NBS1 and MRE11. By utilizing RPA bound to ssDNA, we demonstrate that substituting RPA with phosphorylated RPA or a phosphomimetic weakens the interaction with the MRN complex. Also, the N-terminus of RPA1 is a critical component of the RPA-MRN protein-protein interaction. Deletion of the N-terminal oligonucleotide-oligosaccharide binding fold (OB-fold) of RPA1 abrogates interactions of RPA with MRN and individual proteins of the MRN complex. Further identification of residues critical for MRN binding in the N-terminus of RPA1 shows that substitution of Arg31 and Arg41 with alanines disrupts the RPA-MRN interaction and alters cell cycle progression in response to DNA damage. Thus, the N-terminus of RPA1 and phosphorylation of RPA2 regulate RPA-MRN interactions and are important in the response to DNA damage.