1HN, 13C, and 15N backbone resonance assignments of the human DNA ligase 3 DNA-binding domain (residues 257-477).
ABSTRACT: In mammalian cells, the process of DNA ligation is necessary during DNA replication to create an intact "lagging" strand from a series of smaller Okazaki fragments and to repair DNA strand breaks that arise either due to the direct action of a DNA damaging agent or as a consequence of DNA damage excision during DNA repair. In humans, there are three genes that encode for members of the DNA ligase family (LIG1, LIG3 and LIG4) (Ellenberger and Tomkinson in Ann Rev Biochem 77:313-338. 2008). Although these genes code for polypeptides with overlapping functions in the nucleus, the only mitochondrial DNA ligase (DNA ligase III?), which is essential for mitochondrial genome maintenance, is encoded by the LIG3 gene (Lakshmipathy and Campbell in Mol Cell Biol 19:3869-3876, 1999; Zong et al. in Mol Cell 61:667-676, 2016) Because mitochondria play a central and multifunctional role in malignant tumor progression, there is emerging interest in targeting key mitochondrial proteins. Notably, there is evidence in pre-clinical models that inhibitors of DNA ligase III?, which is frequently up-regulated in cancer, preferentially target cancer cells via their effect on mitochondria (Zong et al. 2016). Since NMR spectroscopy provides unique capabilities for identifying small molecules that bind specifically to DNA ligase III? versus the other DNA ligases), the backbone 1HN, 13C, and 15N NMR resonance assignments were completed for a 222 amino acid DNA-binding domain of human DNA ligase III. These NMR assignments represent a vital first step towards developing DNA ligase III-selective inhibitors.
Project description:DNA replication and repair in mammalian cells involves three distinct DNA ligases: ligase I (Lig1), ligase III (Lig3) and ligase IV (Lig4). Lig3 is considered a key ligase during base excision repair because its stability depends upon its nuclear binding partner Xrcc1, a critical factor for this DNA repair pathway. Lig3 is also present in the mitochondria, where its role in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) maintenance is independent of Xrcc1 (ref. 4). However, the biological role of Lig3 is unclear as inactivation of murine Lig3 results in early embryonic lethality. Here we report that Lig3 is essential for mtDNA integrity but dispensable for nuclear DNA repair. Inactivation of Lig3 in the mouse nervous system resulted in mtDNA loss leading to profound mitochondrial dysfunction, disruption of cellular homeostasis and incapacitating ataxia. Similarly, inactivation of Lig3 in cardiac muscle resulted in mitochondrial dysfunction and defective heart-pump function leading to heart failure. However, Lig3 inactivation did not result in nuclear DNA repair deficiency, indicating essential DNA repair functions of Xrcc1 can occur in the absence of Lig3. Instead, we found that Lig1 was critical for DNA repair, but acted in a cooperative manner with Lig3. Additionally, Lig3 deficiency did not recapitulate the hallmark features of neural Xrcc1 inactivation such as DNA damage-induced cerebellar interneuron loss, further underscoring functional separation of these DNA repair factors. Therefore, our data reveal that the critical biological role of Lig3 is to maintain mtDNA integrity and not Xrcc1-dependent DNA repair.
Project description:Mammalian cells have three ATP-dependent DNA ligases, which are required for DNA replication and repair. Homologues of ligase I (Lig1) and ligase IV (Lig4) are ubiquitous in Eukarya, whereas ligase III (Lig3), which has nuclear and mitochondrial forms, appears to be restricted to vertebrates. Lig3 is implicated in various DNA repair pathways with its partner protein Xrcc1 (ref. 1). Deletion of Lig3 results in early embryonic lethality in mice, as well as apparent cellular lethality, which has precluded definitive characterization of Lig3 function. Here we used pre-emptive complementation to determine the viability requirement for Lig3 in mammalian cells and its requirement in DNA repair. Various forms of Lig3 were introduced stably into mouse embryonic stem (mES) cells containing a conditional allele of Lig3 that could be deleted with Cre recombinase. With this approach, we find that the mitochondrial, but not nuclear, Lig3 is required for cellular viability. Although the catalytic function of Lig3 is required, the zinc finger (ZnF) and BRCA1 carboxy (C)-terminal-related (BRCT) domains of Lig3 are not. Remarkably, the viability requirement for Lig3 can be circumvented by targeting Lig1 to the mitochondria or expressing Chlorella virus DNA ligase, the minimal eukaryal nick-sealing enzyme, or Escherichia coli LigA, an NAD(+)-dependent ligase. Lig3-null cells are not sensitive to several DNA-damaging agents that sensitize Xrcc1-deficient cells. Our results establish a role for Lig3 in mitochondria, but distinguish it from its interacting protein Xrcc1.
Project description:Multiple lines of evidence support the notion that DNA ligase III (LIG3), the only DNA ligase found in mitochondria, is essential for viability in both whole organisms and in cultured cells. Previous attempts to generate cells devoid of mitochondrial DNA ligase failed. Here, we report, for the first time, the derivation of viable LIG3-deficient mouse embryonic fibroblasts. These cells lack mtDNA and are auxotrophic for uridine and pyruvate, which may explain the apparent lethality of the Lig3 knock-out observed in cultured cells in previous studies. Cells with severely reduced expression of LIG3 maintain normal mtDNA copy number and respiration but show reduced viability in the face of alkylating and oxidative damage, increased mtDNA degradation in response to oxidative damage, and slow recovery from mtDNA depletion. Our findings clarify the cellular role of LIG3 and establish that the loss of viability in LIG3-deficient cells is conditional and secondary to the ρ(0) phenotype.
Project description:Ataxia Telangiectasia (A-T) is a progressive childhood disorder characterized most notably by cerebellar degeneration and predisposition to cancer. A-T is caused by mutations in the kinase ATM, a master regulator of the DNA double-strand break response. In addition to DNA-damage signaling defects, A-T cells display mitochondrial dysfunction that is thought to contribute to A-T pathogenesis. However, the molecular mechanism leading to mitochondrial dysfunction in A-T remains unclear. Here, we show that lack of ATM leads to reduced mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) integrity and mitochondrial dysfunction, which are associated to defective mtDNA repair. While protein levels of mtDNA repair proteins are essentially normal, in the absence of ATM levels specifically of DNA ligase III (Lig3), the only DNA ligase working in mitochondria is reduced. The reduction of Lig3 is observed in different A-T patient cells, in brain and pre-B cells derived from ATM knockout mice as well as upon transient or stable knockdown of ATM. Furthermore, pharmacological inhibition of Lig3 in wild type cells phenocopies the mtDNA repair defects observed in A-T patient cells. As targeted deletion of LIG3 in the central nervous system causes debilitating ataxia in mice, reduced Lig3 protein levels and the consequent mtDNA repair defect may contribute to A-T neurodegeneration. A-T is thus the first disease characterized by diminished Lig3.
Project description:DNA ligases are crucial for most DNA transactions, including DNA replication, repair, and recombination. Recently, DNA ligase III (Lig3) has been demonstrated to be crucial for cell survival due to its catalytic function in mitochondria. This review summarizes these recent results and reports on a hitherto unappreciated widespread phylogenetic presence of Lig3 in eukaryotes, including in some organisms before the divergence of metazoa. Analysis of these putative Lig3 homologs suggests that many of them are likely to be found in mitochondria and to be critical for mitochondrial function.
Project description:DNA ligases catalyze the joining of strand breaks in the phosphodiester backbone of duplex DNA and play essential roles in DNA replication, recombination, repair, and maintenance of genomic integrity. Three mammalian DNA ligase genes have been identified, and their corresponding ligases play distinct roles in DNA metabolism. DNA ligase III is proposed to be involved in the repairing of DNA single-strand breaks, but its precise role has not yet been demonstrated directly. To determine its role in DNA repair, cellular growth, and embryonic development, we introduced targeted interruption of the DNA ligase III (LIG3) gene into the mouse. Mice homozygous for LIG3 disruption showed early embryonic lethality. We found that the mutant embryonic developmental process stops at 8.5 days postcoitum (dpc), and excessive cell death occurs at 9.5 dpc. LIG3 mutant cells have relatively normal XRCC1 levels but elevated sister chromatid exchange. These findings indicate that DNA ligase III is involved in essential DNA repair activities required for early embryonic development and therefore cannot be replaced by other DNA ligases.
Project description:Nonhomologous end-joining (NHEJ) is the primary DNA repair pathway thought to underlie chromosomal translocations and other genomic rearrangements in somatic cells. The canonical NHEJ pathway, including DNA ligase IV (Lig4), suppresses genomic instability and chromosomal translocations, leading to the notion that a poorly defined, alternative NHEJ (alt-NHEJ) pathway generates these rearrangements. Here, we investigate the DNA ligase requirement of chromosomal translocation formation in mouse cells. Mammals have two other DNA ligases, Lig1 and Lig3, in addition to Lig4. As deletion of Lig3 results in cellular lethality due to its requirement in mitochondria, we used recently developed cell lines deficient in nuclear Lig3 but rescued for mitochondrial DNA ligase activity. Further, zinc finger endonucleases were used to generate DNA breaks at endogenous loci to induce translocations. Unlike with Lig4 deficiency, which causes an increase in translocation frequency, translocations are reduced in frequency in the absence of Lig3. Residual translocations in Lig3-deficient cells do not show a bias toward use of pre-existing microhomology at the breakpoint junctions, unlike either wild-type or Lig4-deficient cells, consistent with the notion that alt-NHEJ is impaired with Lig3 loss. By contrast, Lig1 depletion in otherwise wild-type cells does not reduce translocations or affect microhomology use. However, translocations are further reduced in Lig3-deficient cells upon Lig1 knockdown, suggesting the existence of two alt-NHEJ pathways, one that is biased toward microhomology use and requires Lig3 and a back-up pathway which does not depend on microhomology and utilizes Lig1.
Project description:In eukaryotes, the three families of ATP-dependent DNA ligases are associated with specific functions in DNA metabolism. DNA ligase I (LigI) catalyzes Okazaki-fragment ligation at the replication fork and nucleotide excision repair (NER). DNA ligase IV (LigIV) mediates repair of DNA double strand breaks (DSB) via the canonical non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ) pathway. The evolutionary younger DNA ligase III (LigIII) is restricted to higher eukaryotes and has been associated with base excision (BER) and single strand break repair (SSBR). Here, using conditional knockout strategies for LIG3 and concomitant inactivation of the LIG1 and LIG4 genes, we show that in DT40 cells LigIII efficiently supports semi-conservative DNA replication. Our observations demonstrate a high functional versatility for the evolutionary new LigIII in DNA replication and mitochondrial metabolism, and suggest the presence of an alternative pathway for Okazaki fragment ligation.
Project description:Telomere dysfunction and fusion play key roles in driving genomic instability and clonal evolution in many tumor types. We have recently described a role for DNA ligase III (LIG3) in facilitating the escape of cells from crisis induced by telomere dysfunction. Our data indicate that LIG3-mediated telomere fusion is important in facilitating clonal evolution.
Project description:Multiple myeloma (MM) is a hematologic malignancy characterized by high genomic instability. Here we provide evidence that hyper-activation of DNA ligase III (LIG3) is crucial for genomic instability and survival of MM cells. LIG3 mRNA expression in MM patients correlates with shorter survival and even increases with more advanced stage of disease. Knockdown of LIG3 impairs MM cells viability in vitro and in vivo, suggesting that neoplastic plasmacells are dependent on LIG3-driven repair. To investigate the mechanisms involved in LIG3 expression, we investigated the post-transcriptional regulation. We identified miR-22-3p as effective negative regulator of LIG3 in MM. Enforced expression of miR-22 in MM cells downregulated LIG3 protein, which in turn increased DNA damage inhibiting in vitro and in vivo cell growth. Taken together, our findings demonstrate that myeloma cells are addicted to LIG3, which can be effectively inhibited by miR-22, promoting a novel axis of genome stability regulation.