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Processing DNA lesions during mitosis to prevent genomic instability

Anastasia Audrey, Lauren de Haan, , H. Rudolf de Boer
Published: 30 August 2022

Abstract: Failure of cells to process toxic double-strand breaks (DSBs) constitutes a major intrinsic source of genome instability, a hallmark of cancer. In contrast with interphase of the cell cycle, canonical repair pathways in response to DSBs are inactivated in mitosis. Although cell cycle checkpoints prevent transmission of DNA lesions into mitosis under physiological condition, cancer cells frequently display mitotic DNA lesions. In this review, we aim to provide an overview of how mitotic cells process lesions that escape checkpoint surveillance. We outline mechanisms that regulate the mitotic DNA damage response and the different types of lesions that are carried over to mitosis, with a focus on joint DNA molecules arising from under-replication and persistent recombination intermediates, as well as DNA catenanes. Additionally, we discuss the processing pathways that resolve each of these lesions in mitosis. Finally, we address the acute and long-term consequences of unresolved mitotic lesions on cellular fate and genome stability.
Keywords: cell cycle / DNA damage response / genome instability / genome integrity / mitosis

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