DNA-dependent protein kinase catalytic subunit (DNA-PKcs) and ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM) are the two major kinases involved in DNA double-strand break (DSB) repair, and are required for cellular resistance to ionizing radiation. Whereas ATM is the key upstream kinase for DSB signaling, DNA-PKcs is primarily involved in DSB repair through the nonhomologous end-joining (NHEJ) mechanism. In addition to DSB repair, ATM has been shown to be involved in the oxidative stress response and could be activated directly in vitro on hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) treatment. However, the role of DNA-PKcs in cellular response to oxidative stress is not clear. We hypothesize that DNA-PKcs may participate in the regulation of ATM activation in response to oxidative stress, and that this regulatory role is independent of its role in DNA double-strand break repair. Our findings reveal that H2O2 induces hyperactivation of ATM signaling in DNA-PKcs-deficient, but not Ligase 4-deficient cells, suggesting an NHEJ-independent role for DNA-PKcs. Furthermore, DNA-PKcs deficiency leads to the elevation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, and to a decrease in cellular survival against H2O2. For the first time, our results reveal that DNA-PKcs plays a noncanonical role in the cellular response to oxidative stress, which is independent from its role in NHEJ. In addition, DNA-PKcs is a critical regulator of the oxidative stress response and contributes to the maintenance of redox homeostasis. Our findings reveal that DNA-PKcs is required for cellular resistance to oxidative stress and suppression of ROS buildup independently of its function in DSB repair.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Free Radical Biology and Medicine|
|State||Published - Nov 2014|
- Oxidative stress
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physiology (medical)