The major focus of this project is to understand how cells monitor and repair DNA damage. Defects in either the surveillance or repair of damaged DNA can lead to chromosomal instability and cancer. For example, inherited disorders affecting cellular responses to DNA damage, such as Nijmegen breakage syndrome and ataxia telangiectasia are characterized by increased susceptibility to lymphoid cancer, extreme radiation sensitivity and immunodeficiency. We are generating knockout and transgenic mouse models that have specific defects in DNA double strand break (DSB) repair. Recently, we characterized mice that were defective in non-homologous end joining, the major pathway for repairing DSBs in mammalian cells. We found that these mice displayed premature aging, a defect in cellular proliferation, a complete block in lymphocyte development and extreme radiation sensitivity. Surprisingly, however, the mice were not prone to cancer. However, a further inactivation of the p53 tumor suppressor gene markedly increased cancer susceptibility, such that these double knockout mice invariably succumbed to B-cell lymphomas that resembled human Burkitt's lymphoma. Other mouse models for DNA double strand break repair are being generating including animals that lack the Nijmegen breakage sydrome protein.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Investigator-Initiated Intramural Research Projects (ZIA)
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Basic Sciences
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Greer, Yoshimi Endo; Gao, Bo; Yang, Yingzi et al. (2017) Lack of Casein Kinase 1 Delta Promotes Genomic Instability - The Accumulation of DNA Damage and Down-Regulation of Checkpoint Kinase 1. PLoS One 12:e0170903
Yazinski, Stephanie A; Comaills, Valentine; Buisson, Rémi et al. (2017) ATR inhibition disrupts rewired homologous recombination and fork protection pathways in PARP inhibitor-resistant BRCA-deficient cancer cells. Genes Dev 31:318-332
Tubbs, Anthony; Nussenzweig, André (2017) Endogenous DNA Damage as a Source of Genomic Instability in Cancer. Cell 168:644-656
Canela, Andres; Maman, Yaakov; Jung, Seolkyoung et al. (2017) Genome Organization Drives Chromosome Fragility. Cell 170:507-521.e18
Salewsky, Bastian; Hildebrand, Gabriele; Rothe, Susanne et al. (2016) Directed Alternative Splicing in Nijmegen Breakage Syndrome: Proof of Principle Concerning Its Therapeutical Application. Mol Ther 24:117-24
Skau, Colleen T; Fischer, Robert S; Gurel, Pinar et al. (2016) FMN2 Makes Perinuclear Actin to Protect Nuclei during Confined Migration and Promote Metastasis. Cell 167:1571-1585.e18
Zong, Dali; Chaudhuri, Arnab Ray; Nussenzweig, André (2016) More end resection is not merrier. Nat Struct Mol Biol 23:699-701
Chaudhuri, Arnab Ray; Callen, Elsa; Ding, Xia et al. (2016) Erratum: Replication fork stability confers chemoresistance in BRCA-deficient cells. Nature 539:456
Nieto-Soler, Maria; Morgado-Palacin, Isabel; Lafarga, Vanesa et al. (2016) Efficacy of ATR inhibitors as single agents in Ewing sarcoma. Oncotarget 7:58759-58767
Li, Minxing; Cole, Francesca; Patel, Dharm S et al. (2016) 53BP1 ablation rescues genomic instability in mice expressing 'RING-less' BRCA1. EMBO Rep 17:1532-1541

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