Chromosome aberrations are common outcomes of exposure to DNA-damaging agents or altered replication events and are associated with various diseases and a variety of carcinomas, including leukemias, lymphomas, sarcomas, and epithelial tumors [1, 2]. The incidence of aberrations can be greatly increased as a result of defects in DNA repair pathways . Although there is considerable information about the molecular events associated with the induction and repair of a double-strand break (DSB), little is known about the events that ultimately lead to translocations or deletions through the formation of chromosome breaks or the dissociation of broken ends. We describe a system for visualizing DNA ends at the site of a DSB in living cells. After induction of the break, DNA ends flanking the DSB site in wild-type cells remained adjacent. Loss of a functional RMX complex (Rad50/Mre11/Xrs2) or a mutation in the Rad50 Zn-hook structure resulted in DNA ends being dispersed in approximately 10%-20% of cells. Thus, the RMX complex holds broken ends together and counteracts mitotic spindle forces that can be destructive to damaged chromosomes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)