A coordinated interplay: proteins with multiple functions in DNA replication, DNA repair, cell cycle/checkpoint control, and transcription.

Abstract:

In eukaryotic cells, DNA transactions such as replication, repair, and transcription require a large set of proteins. In all of these events, complexes of more than 30 polypetides appear to function in highly organized and structurally well-defined machines. We have learned in the past few years that the three essential macromolecular events, replication, repair, and transcription, have common functional entities and are coordinated by complex regulatory mechanisms. This can be documented for replication and repair, for replication and checkpoint control, and for replication and cell cycle control, as well as for replication and transcription. In this review we cover the three different protein classes: DNA polymerases, DNA polymerase accessory proteins, and selected transcription factors. The "common enzyme-different pathway strategy" is fascinating from several points of view: first, it might guarantee that these events are coordinated; second, it can be viewed from an evolutionary angle; and third, this strategy might provide cells with backup mechanisms for essential physiological tasks.

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