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Articles by A. J Lopez Contreras
Total Records ( 2 ) for A. J Lopez Contreras
  A. W Bruce , A. J Lopez Contreras , P Flicek , T. A Down , P Dhami , S. C Dillon , C. M Koch , C. F Langford , I Dunham , R. M Andrews and D. Vetrie
 

The molecular events that contribute to, and result from, the in vivo binding of transcription factors to their cognate DNA sequence motifs in mammalian genomes are poorly understood. We demonstrate that variations within the DNA sequence motifs that bind the transcriptional repressor REST (NRSF) encode in vivo DNA binding affinity hierarchies that contribute to regulatory function during lineage-specific and developmental programs in fundamental ways. First, canonical sequence motifs for REST facilitate strong REST binding and control functional classes of REST targets that are common to all cell types, whilst atypical motifs participate in weak interactions and control those targets, which are cell- or tissue-specific. Second, variations in REST binding relate directly to variations in expression and chromatin configurations of REST's target genes. Third, REST clearance from its binding sites is also associated with variations in the RE1 motif. Finally, and most surprisingly, weak REST binding sites reside in DNA sequences that show the highest levels of constraint through evolution, thus facilitating their roles in maintaining tissue-specific functions. These relationships have never been reported in mammalian systems for any transcription factor.

  M. A Santos , M. S. Y Huen , M Jankovic , H. T Chen , A. J Lopez Contreras , I. A Klein , N Wong , J. L. R Barbancho , O Fernandez Capetillo , M. C Nussenzweig , J Chen and A. Nussenzweig
 

53BP1 is a well-known mediator of the cellular response to DNA damage. Two alternative mechanisms have been proposed to explain 53BP1’s interaction with DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs), one by binding to methylated histones and the other via an RNF8 E3 ligase–dependent ubiquitylation pathway. The formation of RNF8 and 53BP1 irradiation-induced foci are both dependent on histone H2AX. To evaluate the contribution of the RNF8-dependent pathway to 53BP1 function, we generated RNF8 knockout mice. We report that RNF8 deficiency results in defective class switch recombination (CSR) and accumulation of unresolved immunoglobulin heavy chain–associated DSBs. The CSR DSB repair defect is milder than that observed in the absence of 53BP1 but similar to that found in H2AX–/– mice. Moreover, similar to H2AX but different from 53BP1 deficiency, RNF8–/– males are sterile, and this is associated with defective ubiquitylation of the XY chromatin. Combined loss of H2AX and RNF8 does not cause further impairment in CSR, demonstrating that the two genes function epistatically. Importantly, although 53BP1 foci formation is RNF8 dependent, its binding to chromatin is preserved in the absence of RNF8. This suggests a two-step mechanism for 53BP1 association with chromatin in which constitutive loading is dependent on interactions with methylated histones, whereas DNA damage–inducible RNF8-dependent ubiquitylation allows its accumulation at damaged chromatin.

 
 
 
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