Processing of a psoralen DNA interstrand cross-link by XPF-ERCC1 complex in vitro

Laura A. Fisher, Mika Bessho, Tadayoshi Bessho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


The processing of stalled forks caused by DNA interstrand cross-links (ICLs) has been proposed to be an important step in initiating mammalian ICL repair. To investigate a role of the XPF-ERCC1 complex in this process, we designed a model substrate DNA with a single psoralen ICL at a three-way junction (Y-shaped DNA), which mimics a stalled fork structure. We found that the XPF-ERCC1 complex makes an incision 5′ to a psoralen lesion on Y-shaped DNA in a damage-dependent manner. Furthermore, the XPF-ERCC1 complex generates an ICL-specific incision on the 3′-side of an ICL. The ICL-specific 3′-incision, along with the 5′-incision, on the cross-linked Y-shaped DNA resulted in the separation of the two cross-linked strands (the unhooking of the ICL) and the induction of a double strand break near the cross-linked site. These results implicate the XPF-ERCC1 complex in initiating ICL repair by unhooking the ICL, which simultaneously induces a double strand break at a stalled fork.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1275-1281
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 18 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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