Both exogenous and endogenous agents are a threat to DNA integrity. Exogenous environmental agents such as ultraviolet (UV) and ionizing radiation, genotoxic chemicals and endogenous byproducts of metabolism including reactive oxygen species can cause alterations in DNA structure (DNA damage). Unrepaired DNA damage has been linked to a variety of human disorders including cancer and neurodegenerative disease. Thus, efficient mechanisms to detect DNA lesions, signal their presence and promote their repair have been evolved in cells. If DNA is effectively repaired, DNA damage response is inactivated and normal cell functioning resumes. In contrast, when DNA lesions cannot be removed, chronic DNA damage triggers specific cell responses such as cell death and senescence. Recently, DNA damage has been shown to induce autophagy, a cellular catabolic process that maintains a balance between synthesis, degradation, and recycling of cellular components. But the exact mechanisms by which DNA damage triggers autophagy are unclear. More importantly, the role of autophagy in the DNA damage response and cellular fate is unknown. In this review we analyze evidence that supports a role for autophagy as an integral part of the DNA damage response.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Mutation Research/Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis|
|Publication status||Published - 3 Jun 2011|