The Mlh1-Pms1 endonuclease uses ATP to preserve DNA discontinuities as strand discrimination signals to facilitate mismatch repair

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The Mlh1-Pms1 endonuclease uses ATP to preserve DNA discontinuities as strand discrimination signals to facilitate mismatch repair

Authors

Piscitelli, J. M.; Witte, S. J.; Sakinejad, Y. S.; Manhart, C. M.

Abstract

In eukaryotic post-replicative mismatch repair, MutS homologs (MSH) detect mismatches and recruit MLH complexes to nick the newly replicated DNA strand upon activation by the replication processivity clamp, PCNA. This incision enables mismatch removal and DNA repair. Biasing MLH endonuclease activity to the newly replicated DNA strand is crucial for repair. In reconstituted in vitro assays, PCNA is loaded at pre-existing discontinuities and orients the major MLH endonuclease Mlh1-Pms1/MLH1- PMS2 (yeast/human) to nick the discontinuous strand. In vivo, newly replicated DNA transiently contains discontinuities which are critical for efficient mismatch repair. How these discontinuities are preserved as strand discrimination signals during the window of time where mismatch repair occurs is unknown. Here, we demonstrate that yeast Mlh1-Pms1 uses ATP binding to recognize DNA discontinuities. This complex does not efficiently interact with PCNA, which partially suppresses ATPase activity, and prevents dissociation from the discontinuity. These data suggest that in addition to initiating mismatch repair by nicking newly replicated DNA, Mlh1-Pms1 protects strand discrimination signals, aiding in maintaining its own strand discrimination signposts. Our findings also highlight the significance of Mlh1-Pms1\'s ATPase activity for inducing DNA dissociation, as mutant proteins deficient in this function become immobilized on DNA post-incision, explaining in vivo phenotypes.

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