Sci. Signal., 26 October 2010
Cell Biology Stress, DNA Damage, and ATM
L. Bryan Ray
Science, Science Signaling, AAAS, Washington, DC 20005, USA
The protein kinase ATM (ataxia-telangiectasia mutated) is a key component of the signaling pathway through which cells are protected from DNA damage. ATM becomes activated within a protein complex at sites of double-stranded breaks in DNA. ATM is also activated in response to increased production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Such activation was thought to reflect DNA damage caused by ROS, but Guo et al. showed that ATM was in fact directly activated by ROS. A cysteine residue in ATM contributes to the formation of disulfide-linked dimers of activated ATM on exposure to ROS in vitro. Experiments using mutated forms of the enzyme suggested that two distinct mechanisms regulated ATM activity.
Citation: L. B. Ray, Stress, DNA Damage, and ATM. Sci. Signal. 3, ec329 (2010).
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