UBC13-Mediated Ubiquitin Signaling Promotes Removal of Blocking Adducts from DNA Double-Strand Breaks

Remi Akagawa, Hai Thanh Trinh, Liton Kumar Saha, Masataka Tsuda, Kouji Hirota, Shintaro Yamada, Atsushi Shibata, Masato T. Kanemaki, Shinichiro Nakada, Shunichi Takeda, Hiroyuki Sasanuma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Chemical modifications and adducts at DNA double-strand break (DSB) ends must be cleaned before re-joining by non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ). MRE11 nuclease is essential for efficient removal of Topoisomerase II (TOP2)-DNA adducts from TOP2 poison-induced DSBs. However, mechanisms in MRE11 recruitment to DSB sites in G1 phase remain poorly understood. Here, we report that TOP2-DNA adducts are expeditiously removed through UBC13-mediated polyubiquitination, which promotes DSB resection in G2 phase. We found that this ubiquitin signaling is required for efficient recruitment of MRE11 onto DSB sites in G1 by facilitating localization of RAP80 and BRCA1 to DSB sites and complex formation between BRCA1 and MRE11 at DSB sites. UBC13 and MRE11 are dispensable for restriction-enzyme-induced “clean” DSBs repair but responsible for over 50% and 70% of NHEJ-dependent repair of γ-ray-induced “dirty” DSBs, respectively. In conclusion, ubiquitin signaling promotes nucleolytic removal of DSB blocking adducts by MRE11 before NHEJ.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101027
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Apr 24
Externally publishedYes


  • Biological Sciences
  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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