Inducible Repair of Alkylated Bases in Mammalian Cells

  • Patricia Lefebvre
  • Françoise Laval


Alkylating agents react with various molecules, specially with nucleic acids. The interaction of these agents with DNA has been extensively studied, and the relative amounts of the various adducts formed either in vitro or in vivo have been measured ( 1 ). Some adducts, such as 3-methyl adenine ( 3-MeAd ) are lethal lesions, some such as O6 -methylguanine ( O6 -MeGua ) or O4 -methylthymine ( O4 -MeThy ) are mutagenic lesions ( reviewed in 2 ). In bacteria, the repair of alkylated residues in DNA occurs by two different processes. Some alkylated bases ( e.g. 3-MeAd ) are removed by a specific glycosylase which forms an apurinic or an apyrimidinic site ( AP site ), which is in turn repaired by the sequential actions of an AP-endonuclease, a DNA polymerase and a DNA ligase ( 3 ). Other alkylated residues (e.g. O6 -MeGua, O4 -MeThy ) are repaired by a transferase which transfers the methyl group from the alkylated base to one of its own cystein residues ( 4–5 ).


Adaptive Response Alkylating Agent Transferase Activity Chinese Hamster Cell Mutagenic Lesion 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patricia Lefebvre
    • 1
  • Françoise Laval
    • 1
  1. 1.Groupe Radiochimie de l’ADNInstitut Gustave RoussyVillejuifFrance

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