Yeast-based reporter assays are useful for detecting various genotoxic chemicals. We established a genotoxicity assay using recombinant strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, each containing a reporter plasmid with the secretory luciferase gene from Cypridina noctiluca, driven by a DNA damage-responsive promoter of the yeast RNR3 gene. This system detected the genotoxicity of methyl methanesulphonate (MMS) as sensitively as conventional yeast-based reporter assays, using the beta-galactosidase gene in a concentration-dependent manner; it also detects four other genotoxic chemicals, allowing us to monitor DNA damage easily by skipping the cell extraction process for the assay. We examined Cypridina luciferase levels induced by MMS and three antitumour agents using a set of BY4741-derived deletion mutants, each defective in a DNA repair pathway or DNA damage checkpoint. Luciferase activities were particularly enhanced in mutant strains with mms2Delta and mag1Delta by exposure to MMS, rad59Delta and mlh1Delta to camptothecin and mms2Delta and mlh1Delta to mitomycin C, respectively, compared with their parent strains. Enhanced reporter activities were also found in some DNA repair mutants with cisplatin. These observations suggest that this Cypridina secretory luciferase reporter assay using yeast DNA repair mutants offers convenient and sensitive detection of the potential genotoxicity of numerous compounds, including antitumour drugs and studying the mechanisms of DNA damage response in yeast. Copyright (c) 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.CI - Copyright (c) 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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