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Reference: Minca EC and Kowalski D (2011) Replication fork stalling by bulky DNA damage: localization at active origins and checkpoint modulation. Nucleic Acids Res 39(7):2610-23

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Abstract

The integrity of the genome is threatened by DNA damage that blocks the progression of replication forks. Little is known about the genomic locations of replication fork stalling, and its determinants and consequences in vivo. Here we show that bulky DNA damaging agents induce localized fork stalling at yeast replication origins, and that localized stalling is dependent on proximal origin activity and is modulated by the intra-S-phase checkpoint. Fork stalling preceded the formation of sister chromatid junctions required for bypassing DNA damage. Despite DNA adduct formation, localized fork stalling was abrogated at an origin inactivated by a point mutation and prominent stalling was not detected at naturally-inactive origins in the replicon. The intra-S-phase checkpoint contributed to the high-level of fork stalling at early origins, while checkpoint inactivation led to initiation, localized stalling and chromatid joining at a late origin. Our results indicate that replication forks initially encountering a bulky DNA adduct exhibit a dual nature of stalling: a checkpoint-independent arrest that triggers sister chromatid junction formation, as well as a checkpoint-enhanced arrest at early origins that accompanies the repression of late origin firing. We propose that the initial checkpoint-enhanced arrest reflects events that facilitate fork resolution at subsequent lesions.

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Journal Article
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Minca EC, Kowalski D
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