Nav: Home

Initiating DNA Repair

September 08, 2016

To find out what activates SIRT6, the researchers alternately applied chemical inhibitors to human skin cells to determine which proteins were essential in getting the gene to repair the broken DNA strands. They discovered that one protein was involved in activating the gene in response to oxidative stress -- c-Jun N-terminal kinase, which goes by the simpler term JNK. When JNK was inhibited, SIRT6 was not activated and the broken strands of DNA were not repaired efficiently.

The findings have been published in the journal Cell Reports.

To communicate stress signals within cells, JNKs add phosphate groups to proteins, and the Rochester study found the amino acid residue on SIRT6 that is modified by JNK. Once modified, SIRT6 can attract the enzyme PARP1 (Poly [ADP-ribose] polymerase 1) to the damaged site, where the enzyme undertakes a chemical process to repair the DNA. In effect, the activated gene serves as a first responder, recruiting DNA repair enzymes to the accident site and getting them to work.

The study is the latest work by Gorbunova and Seluanov to shed light on the molecular mechanisms that drive the aging process. Their previous work involved understanding the prominence of an inferior DNA repair process later in life, as well as how errant DNA fragments -- called jumping genes -- are typically kept inactive.

Understanding the molecular, chemical, and genetic process of aging has implications for both longevity and quality of life. While more research and clinical work need to be done, such studies help pave the way for possible treatments in the future.

For example, Seluanov says the results may allow pharmaceutical researchers to one day design drugs that activate SIRT6 in ways that reduce molecular damage.

"These drugs may be used to protect our genomes from damage, and could ultimately prevent cancer and extend healthy lifespan," he says.
-end-


University of Rochester

Related Dna Articles:

Penn State DNA ladders: Inexpensive molecular rulers for DNA research
New license-free tools will allow researchers to estimate the size of DNA fragments for a fraction of the cost of currently available methods.
It is easier for a DNA knot...
How can long DNA filaments, which have convoluted and highly knotted structure, manage to pass through the tiny pores of biological systems?
How do metals interact with DNA?
Since a couple of decades, metal-containing drugs have been successfully used to fight against certain types of cancer.
Electrons use DNA like a wire for signaling DNA replication
A Caltech-led study has shown that the electrical wire-like behavior of DNA is involved in the molecule's replication.
Switched-on DNA
DNA, the stuff of life, may very well also pack quite the jolt for engineers trying to advance the development of tiny, low-cost electronic devices.
Researchers are first to see DNA 'blink'
Northwestern University biomedical engineers have developed imaging technology that is the first to see DNA 'blink,' or fluoresce.
Finding our way around DNA
A Salk team developed a tool that maps functional areas of the genome to better understand disease.
A 'strand' of DNA as never before
In a carefully designed polymer, researchers at the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences have imprinted a sequence of a single strand of DNA.
Doubling down on DNA
The African clawed frog X. laevis genome contains two full sets of chromosomes from two extinct ancestors.
'Poring over' DNA
Church's team at Harvard's Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering and the Harvard Medical School developed a new electronic DNA sequencing platform based on biologically engineered nanopores that could help overcome present limitations.

Related Dna Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Anthropomorphic
Do animals grieve? Do they have language or consciousness? For a long time, scientists resisted the urge to look for human qualities in animals. This hour, TED speakers explore how that is changing. Guests include biological anthropologist Barbara King, dolphin researcher Denise Herzing, primatologist Frans de Waal, and ecologist Carl Safina.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#SB2 2019 Science Birthday Minisode: Mary Golda Ross
Our second annual Science Birthday is here, and this year we celebrate the wonderful Mary Golda Ross, born 9 August 1908. She died in 2008 at age 99, but left a lasting mark on the science of rocketry and space exploration as an early woman in engineering, and one of the first Native Americans in engineering. Join Rachelle and Bethany for this very special birthday minisode celebrating Mary and her achievements. Thanks to our Patreons who make this show possible! Read more about Mary G. Ross: Interview with Mary Ross on Lash Publications International, by Laurel Sheppard Meet Mary Golda...