Gene Summary

Gene:RAD52; RAD52 homolog, DNA repair protein
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene shares similarity with Saccharomyces cerevisiae Rad52, a protein important for DNA double-strand break repair and homologous recombination. This gene product was shown to bind single-stranded DNA ends, and mediate the DNA-DNA interaction necessary for the annealing of complementary DNA strands. It was also found to interact with DNA recombination protein RAD51, which suggested its role in RAD51 related DNA recombination and repair. A pseudogene of this gene is present on chromosome 2. Alternative splicing results in multiple transcript variants. Additional alternatively spliced transcript variants of this gene have been described, but their full-length nature is not known. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2014]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:DNA repair protein RAD52 homolog
Source:NCBIAccessed: 27 August, 2015


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 27 August 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

  • Polymorphism
  • Transcription Factors
  • Lung Cancer
  • Chromosome 12
  • DNA Repair Enzymes
  • Ultraviolet Rays
  • Thyroid Cancer
  • Single Nucleotide Polymorphism
  • BRCA1 Protein
  • Risk Factors
  • Germ-Line Mutation
  • Rad51 Recombinase
  • Genetic Predisposition
  • Rad52 DNA Repair and Recombination Protein
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • BRCA2 Protein
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • DNA Helicases
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Case-Control Studies
  • DNA Repair
  • Tumor Markers
  • Breast Cancer
  • Texas
  • Genetic Recombination
  • Cancer DNA
  • Mutation
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Fungal Proteins
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • p53 Protein
  • Genotype
  • DNA Damage
  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • Phenotype
  • Gene Expression
  • Adenocarcinoma
Tag cloud generated 27 August, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (4)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: RAD52 (cancer-related)

Wu Z, Wang P, Song C, et al.
Evaluation of miRNA-binding-site SNPs of MRE11A, NBS1, RAD51 and RAD52 involved in HRR pathway genes and risk of breast cancer in China.
Mol Genet Genomics. 2015; 290(3):1141-53 [PubMed] Related Publications
MiRNA-binding-site single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in homologous recombination repair (HRR) pathway genes may change DNA repair capacity and affect susceptibility to cancer though complex gene-gene and gene-reproductive factors interactions. However, these SNPs associated with breast cancer (BC) are still unclear in Chinese women. Therefore, we conducted a case-control study to evaluate the genetic susceptibility of the five miRNA-binding-site SNPs in HRR pathway genes (MRE11A rs2155209, NBS1 rs2735383, RAD51 rs963917 and rs963918 and RAD52 rs7963551) in the development of BC. MRE11A rs2155209 and RAD52 rs7963551 were found to be associated with BC risk (ORadjusted: 1.87; 95 % CI: 1.23-2.86 and ORadjusted: 0.36; 95 % CI: 0.24-0.58). NBS1 rs2735383, RAD51 rs963917 and rs963918 were associated with BC risk after stratification according to reproductive factors. Haplotypes of Crs963917Ars963918 decreased the risk of BC (ORadjusted: 0.53; 95 % CI: 0.4-0.68), while the Trs963917Ars963918 and Trs963917Grs963918 haplotypes could increase the risk of BC (ORadjusted: 1.28; 95 % CI: 1.05-1.57 and ORadjusted: 1.31; 95 % CI: 1.09-1.62). Combined effect of risk alleles showed that the five SNPs were associated with increased BC risk in a dose-dependent manner (P trend = 0.003). The GC genotype of rs2735383, AG + GG genotype of rs963918 and AC + CC genotype of rs7963551 were associated with PR positivity of BC patients. These findings suggest that the miRNA-binding-site SNPs involved in HRR pathway genes may affect susceptibility of BC in Chinese women; moreover, the interactions of gene-gene and gene-reproductive factors play vital roles in the progression of BC. Further functional studies with larger sample are needed to support and validate these findings.

Khrunin AV, Khokhrin DV, Moisseev AA, et al.
Pharmacogenomic assessment of cisplatin-based chemotherapy outcomes in ovarian cancer.
Pharmacogenomics. 2014; 15(3):329-37 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIM: Cisplatin and its analogs are potent antitumor agents. However, their use is restricted by significant variability in tumor response and toxicity. There is a great need to identify genetic markers to predict the most important adverse events and patient outcomes.
MATERIALS & METHODS: We have evaluated the association between polymorphisms in 106 genes involved mainly in xenobiotic metabolism, DNA repair, the cell cycle and apoptosis, and outcomes in 104 ovarian cancer patients receiving cisplatin-cyclophosphamide chemotherapy. Arrayed primer extension technology was used to genotype 228 SNPs.
RESULTS: Ten SNPs in nine genes were found to be associated with one or more of the assessed clinical end points. SNPs in TPMT and NQO1 were significantly associated with progression-free survival. Polymorphisms in ERCC5, RAD52, MUTYH and LIG3 correlated with the occurrence of severe neutropenia. SNPs in NAT2 and EPHX1 were associated with anemia and nephrotoxicity, respectively. A SNP in ADH1C was correlated with complete tumor response.
CONCLUSION: The results obtained suggest that SNPs in different genes involved in drug metabolism can be important in identifying patients at risk for nonresponse to or toxicity from cisplatin-based treatment.

Fayaz S, Karimmirza M, Tanhaei S, et al.
Increased risk of differentiated thyroid carcinoma with combined effects of homologous recombination repair gene polymorphisms in an Iranian population.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2014; 14(11):6727-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
Homologous recombination (HR) repair has a crucial role to play in the prevention of chromosomal instability, and it is clear that defects in some HR repair genes are associated with many cancers. To evaluate the potential effect of some HR repair gene polymorphisms with differentiated thyroid carcinoma (DTC), we assessed Rad51 (135G>C), Rad52 (2259C>T), XRCC2 (R188H) and XRCC3 (T241M) polymorphisms in Iranian DTC patients and cancer-free controls. In addition, haplotype analysis and gene combination assessment were carried out. Genotyping of Rad51 (135G>C), Rad52 (2259C>T) and XRCC3 (T241M) polymorphisms was determined by PCR-RFLP and PCR-HRM analysis was carried out to evaluate XRCC2 (R188H) . Separately, Rad51, Rad52 and XRCC2 polymorphisms were not shown to be more significant in patients when compared to controls in crude, sex-adjusted and age-adjusted form. However, results indicated a significant difference in XRCC3 genotypes for patients when compared to controls (p value: 0.035). The GCTG haplotype demonstrated a significant difference (p value: 0.047). When compared to the wild type, the combined variant form of Rad52/XRCC2/XRCC3 revealed an elevated risk of DTC (p value: 0.007). It is recommended that Rad52 2259C>T, XRCC2 R188H and XRCC3 T241M polymorphisms should be simultaneously considered as contributing to a polygenic risk of differentiated thyroid carcinoma.

Cramer-Morales K, Nieborowska-Skorska M, Scheibner K, et al.
Personalized synthetic lethality induced by targeting RAD52 in leukemias identified by gene mutation and expression profile.
Blood. 2013; 122(7):1293-304 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Homologous recombination repair (HRR) protects cells from the lethal effect of spontaneous and therapy-induced DNA double-stand breaks. HRR usually depends on BRCA1/2-RAD51, and RAD52-RAD51 serves as back-up. To target HRR in tumor cells, a phenomenon called "synthetic lethality" was applied, which relies on the addiction of cancer cells to a single DNA repair pathway, whereas normal cells operate 2 or more mechanisms. Using mutagenesis and a peptide aptamer approach, we pinpointed phenylalanine 79 in RAD52 DNA binding domain I (RAD52-phenylalanine 79 [F79]) as a valid target to induce synthetic lethality in BRCA1- and/or BRCA2-deficient leukemias and carcinomas without affecting normal cells and tissues. Targeting RAD52-F79 disrupts the RAD52-DNA interaction, resulting in the accumulation of toxic DNA double-stand breaks in malignant cells, but not in normal counterparts. In addition, abrogation of RAD52-DNA interaction enhanced the antileukemia effect of already-approved drugs. BRCA-deficient status predisposing to RAD52-dependent synthetic lethality could be predicted by genetic abnormalities such as oncogenes BCR-ABL1 and PML-RAR, mutations in BRCA1 and/or BRCA2 genes, and gene expression profiles identifying leukemias displaying low levels of BRCA1 and/or BRCA2. We believe this work may initiate a personalized therapeutic approach in numerous patients with tumors displaying encoded and functional BRCA deficiency.

Pedersen BS, Konstantinopoulos PA, Spillman MA, De S
Copy neutral loss of heterozygosity is more frequent in older ovarian cancer patients.
Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2013; 52(9):794-801 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) is a common type of genomic alterations in ovarian cancer. Analyzing 74,415 copy neutral LOH events in 513 serous ovarian adenocarcinomas samples from the Cancer Genome Atlas, we report that the frequency of LOH events increases with age. Similar trend is observed for LOH involving chromosome 17, which is frequently implicated in ovarian cancer. The results are consistent when we analyze data from the Boston high-grade serous cancer cohort. We further show that germ line and somatic mutations in BRCA1 (in chromosome 17) and BRCA2 (in chromosome 13) loci are not necessary to establish the pattern. We also report significant age-related changes in expression patterns for several genes in the homologous recombination (HR) pathway, such as BRCA1, RAD50, RAD52, XRCC2, XRCC3, and MRE11A in these patient samples. Furthermore, we develop a metric for pathway-level imbalance, and show that increased imbalance in the HR pathway, i.e., increase in expression of some HR genes and decrease in expression of others, is common and correlates significantly with the frequency of LOH events in the patient samples. Taken together, it is highly likely that aging and deregulation of HR pathway contribute to the increased incidence of copy-neutral LOH in ovarian cancer patients.

Shi TY, Yang G, Tu XY, et al.
RAD52 variants predict platinum resistance and prognosis of cervical cancer.
PLoS One. 2012; 7(11):e50461 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
RAD52 is an important but not well characterized homologous recombination repair gene that can bind to single-stranded DNA ends and mediate the DNA-DNA interaction necessary for the annealing of complementary DNA strands. To evaluate the role of RAD52 variants in the response of tumor cells to platinum agents, we investigated their associations with platinum resistance and prognosis in cervical cancer patients. We enrolled 154 patients with cervical squamous cell carcinoma, who had radical surgery between 2008 and 2009, and genotyped three potentially functional RAD52 variants by the SNaPshot assay. We tested in vitro platinum resistance and RAD52 expression by using the MTT and immunohistochemistry methods, respectively. In 144 cases who had genotyping data, we found that both the rs1051669 variant and RAD52 protein expression were significantly associated with carboplatin resistance (P = 0.024 and 0.028, respectively) and rs10774474 with nedaplatin resistance (P = 0.018). The rs1051669 variant was significantly associated with RAD52 protein expression (adjusted OR = 4.7, 95% CI = 1.4-16.1, P = 0.013). When these three RAD52 variants were combined, progression-free survival was lower in patients who carried at least one (≥1) variant allele compared to those without any of the variant alleles (P = 0.047). Therefore, both RAD52 variants and protein expression can predict platinum resistance, and RAD52 variants appeared to predict prognosis in cervical cancer patients. Large studies are warranted to validate these findings.

Jiang Y, Qin Z, Hu Z, et al.
Genetic variation in a hsa-let-7 binding site in RAD52 is associated with breast cancer susceptibility.
Carcinogenesis. 2013; 34(3):689-93 [PubMed] Related Publications
Genetic variants may influence miRNA-mRNA interaction through modulate binding affinity, creating or destroying miRNA-binding sites. Twenty-four single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that were predicted to affect the binding affinity of breast cancer-related miRNAs to 3'-untranslated regions (UTR) of known genes were genotyped in 878 breast cancer cases and 900 controls in Chinese women. Three promising SNPs (rs10494836, rs10857748 and rs7963551) were further validated in additional 914 breast cancer cases and 967 controls. The variant allele (C) of rs7963551 at 3'-UTR of RAD52 showed a consistently reduced breast cancer risk in two stages with a combined odds ratio (OR) of 0.84 [95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.75-0.95], which was more prominent among women with early age at first live birth (OR = 0.71, 95% CI = 0.58-0.87). A significant interaction was observed between rs7963551 and age at first live birth on breast cancer risk (P for interaction = 0.04). Luciferase activity assay showed a higher expression level for rs7963551 C allele as compared with A allele (P = 5.19 × 10(-3) for MCF-7 cell lines), which might be due to a reduced inhibition from a weakened binding capacity of miRNA to 3'-UTR of RAD52 harboring C allele. These findings indicate that rs7963551 located at hsa-let-7 binding site may alter expression of RAD52 through modulating miRNA-mRNA interaction and contribute to the development of breast cancer in Chinese women.

Liang Z, Ahn J, Guo D, et al.
MicroRNA-302 replacement therapy sensitizes breast cancer cells to ionizing radiation.
Pharm Res. 2013; 30(4):1008-16 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: Solid tumors can be resistant or develop resistance to radiotherapy. The purpose of this study is to explore whether microRNA-302 is involved in radioresistance and can be exploited as a sensitizer to enhance sensitivity of breast cancer cells to radiation therapy.
METHODS: MiR-302 expression levels in radioresistant cell lines were analyzed in comparison with their parent cell lines. Furthermore, we investigated whether enforced expression of miR-302 sensitized radioresistant breast cancer cells to ionizing radiation in vitro and in vivo.
RESULTS: MiR-302 was downregulated in irradiated breast cancer cells. Additionally, the expression levels of miR-302a were inversely correlated with those of AKT1 and RAD52, two critical regulators of radioresistance. More promisingly, miR-302a sensitized radioresistant breast cancer cells to radiation therapy in vitro and in vivo and reduced the expression of AKT1 and RAD52.
CONCLUSION: Our findings demonstrated that decreased expression of miR-302 confers radioresistance and restoration of miR-302 baseline expression sensitizes breast cancer cells to radiotherapy. These data suggest that miR-302 is a potential sensitizer to radiotherapy.

Shi J, Chatterjee N, Rotunno M, et al.
Inherited variation at chromosome 12p13.33, including RAD52, influences the risk of squamous cell lung carcinoma.
Cancer Discov. 2012; 2(2):131-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
UNLABELLED: Although lung cancer is largely caused by tobacco smoking, inherited genetic factors play a role in its etiology. Genome-wide association studies in Europeans have only robustly demonstrated 3 polymorphic variations that influence the risk of lung cancer. Tumor heterogeneity may have hampered the detection of association signal when all lung cancer subtypes were analyzed together. In a genome-wide association study of 5,355 European ever-smoker lung cancer patients and 4,344 smoking control subjects, we conducted a pathway-based analysis in lung cancer histologic subtypes with 19,082 single-nucleotide polymorphisms mapping to 917 genes in the HuGE-defined "inflammation" pathway. We identified a susceptibility locus for squamous cell lung carcinoma at 12p13.33 (RAD52, rs6489769) and replicated the association in 3 independent studies totaling 3,359 squamous cell lung carcinoma cases and 9,100 controls (OR = 1.20, P(combined) = 2.3 × 10(-8)).
SIGNIFICANCE: The combination of pathway-based approaches and information on disease-specific subtypes can improve the identification of cancer susceptibility loci in heterogeneous diseases.

Kazma R, Babron MC, Gaborieau V, et al.
Lung cancer and DNA repair genes: multilevel association analysis from the International Lung Cancer Consortium.
Carcinogenesis. 2012; 33(5):1059-64 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Lung cancer (LC) is the leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide and tobacco smoking is the major associated risk factor. DNA repair is an important process, maintaining genome integrity and polymorphisms in DNA repair genes may contribute to susceptibility to LC. To explore the role of DNA repair genes in LC, we conducted a multilevel association study with 1655 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 211 DNA repair genes using 6911 individuals pooled from four genome-wide case-control studies. Single SNP association corroborates previous reports of association with rs3131379, located on the gene MSH5 (P = 3.57 × 10-5) and returns a similar risk estimate. The effect of this SNP is modulated by histological subtype. On the log-additive scale, the odds ratio per allele is 1.04 (0.84-1.30) for adenocarcinomas, 1.52 (1.28-1.80) for squamous cell carcinomas and 1.31 (1.09-1.57) for other histologies (heterogeneity test: P = 9.1 × 10(-)(3)). Gene-based association analysis identifies three repair genes associated with LC (P < 0.01): UBE2N, structural maintenance of chromosomes 1L2 and POLB. Two additional genes (RAD52 and POLN) are borderline significant. Pathway-based association analysis identifies five repair pathways associated with LC (P < 0.01): chromatin structure, DNA polymerases, homologous recombination, genes involved in human diseases with sensitivity to DNA-damaging agents and Rad6 pathway and ubiquitination. This first international pooled analysis of a large dataset unravels the role of specific DNA repair pathways in LC and highlights the importance of accounting for gene and pathway effects when studying LC.

Du LQ, Du XQ, Bai JQ, et al.
Methotrexate-mediated inhibition of RAD51 expression and homologous recombination in cancer cells.
J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 2012; 138(5):811-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Methotrexate is an inhibitor of folic acid metabolism. Homologous recombination is one of the most important ways to repair double-stranded breaks in DNA and influence the radio- and chemosensitivity of tumor cells. But the relationship between methotrexate and homologous recombination repair has not been elucidated.
METHODS: Induction of double-strand breaks by methotrexate in HOS cells is assessed by the neutral comet assay. Inhibition of subnuclear repair foci by methotrexate is measured by immunofluorescence. Western blot and quantitative real-time PCR are conducted to detect whether methotrexate affects the expression level of genes involved in homologous recombination. In addition, we used a pCMV3xnls-I-SceI construct to determine whether methotrexate directly inhibits the process of homologous recombinational repair in cells, and the sensitivity to methotrexate in the Ku80-deficient cells is detected using clonogenic survival assays.
RESULTS: The result showed that methotrexate can regulate the repair of DNA double-strand breaks after radiation exposure, and methotrexate inhibition caused the complete inhibition of subnuclear repair foci in response to ionizing radiation. Mechanistic investigation revealed that methotrexate led to a significant reduction in the transcription of RAD51 genes. Treatment with methotrexate resulted in a decreased ability to perform homology-directed repair of I-SceI-induced chromosome breaks. In addition, enhancement of cell death was observed in Ku mutant cells compared to wild-type cells.
CONCLUSIONS: These results demonstrate that methotrexate can affect homologous recombination repair of DNA double-strand breaks by controlling the expression of homologous recombination-related genes and suppressing the proper assembly of homologous recombination-directed subnuclear foci.

Guo GS, Zhang FM, Gao RJ, et al.
DNA repair and synthetic lethality.
Int J Oral Sci. 2011; 3(4):176-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Tumors often have DNA repair defects, suggesting additional inhibition of other DNA repair pathways in tumors may lead to synthetic lethality. Accumulating data demonstrate that DNA repair-defective tumors, in particular homologous recombination (HR), are highly sensitive to DNA-damaging agents. Thus, HR-defective tumors exhibit potential vulnerability to the synthetic lethality approach, which may lead to new therapeutic strategies. It is well known that poly (adenosine diphosphate (ADP)-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibitors show the synthetically lethal effect in tumors defective in BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes encoded proteins that are required for efficient HR. In this review, we summarize the strategies of targeting DNA repair pathways and other DNA metabolic functions to cause synthetic lethality in HR-defective tumor cells.

Ghosh S, Krishna M
Role of Rad52 in fractionated irradiation induced signaling in A549 lung adenocarcinoma cells.
Mutat Res. 2012; 729(1-2):61-72 [PubMed] Related Publications
The effect of fractionated doses of γ-irradiation (2Gy per fraction over 5 days), as delivered in cancer radiotherapy, was compared with acute doses of 10 and 2Gy, in A549 cells. A549 cells were found to be relatively more radioresistant if the 10Gy dose was delivered as a fractionated regimen. Microarray analysis showed upregulation of DNA repair and cell cycle arrest genes in the cells exposed to fractionated irradiation. There was intense activation of DNA repair pathway-associated genes (DNA-PK, ATM, Rad52, MLH1 and BRCA1), efficient DNA repair and phospho-p53 was found to be translocated to the nucleus of A549 cells exposed to fractionated irradiation. MCF-7 cells responded differently in fractionated regimen. Silencing of the Rad52 gene in fractionated group of A549 cells made the cells radiosensitive. The above result indicated increased radioresistance in A549 cells due to the activation of Rad52 gene.

Yu S, Song Z, Luo J, et al.
Over-expression of RAD51 or RAD54 but not RAD51/4 enhances extra-chromosomal homologous recombination in the human sarcoma (HT-1080) cell line.
J Biotechnol. 2011; 154(1):21-4 [PubMed] Related Publications
RAD51 and RAD54, members of the RAD52 epistasis group, play key roles in homologous recombination (HR). The efficiency of homologous recombination (HR) can be increased by over-expression of either of them. A vector that allows co-expression of RAD51 and RAD54 was constructed to investigate interactions between the two proteins during extra-chromosomal HR. The efficiency of extra-chromosomal HR evaluated by GFP extra-chromosomal HR was enhanced (110-245%) in different transfected Human sarcoma (HT-1080) cell colonies. We observed that RAD51 clearly promotes extra-chromosomal HR; however, the actions of RAD54 in extra-chromosomal HR were weak. Our data suggest that RAD51 may function as a universal factor during HR, whereas RAD54 mainly functions in other types of HR (gene targeting or intra-chromosomal HR), which involves interaction with chromosomal DNA.

Jewell R, Conway C, Mitra A, et al.
Patterns of expression of DNA repair genes and relapse from melanoma.
Clin Cancer Res. 2010; 16(21):5211-21 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: To use gene expression profiling of formalin-fixed primary melanoma samples to detect expression patterns that are predictive of relapse and response to chemotherapy.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Gene expression profiles were identified in samples from two studies (472 tumors). Gene expression data for 502 cancer-related genes from these studies were combined for analysis.
RESULTS: Increased expression of DNA repair genes most strongly predicted relapse and was associated with thicker tumors. Increased expression of RAD51 was the most predictive of relapse-free survival in unadjusted analysis (hazard ratio, 2.98; P = 8.80 × 10(-6)). RAD52 (hazard ratio, 4.73; P = 0.0004) and TOP2A (hazard ratio, 3.06; P = 0.009) were independent predictors of relapse-free survival in multivariable analysis. These associations persisted when the analysis was further adjusted for demographic and histologic features of prognostic importance (RAD52 P = 0.01; TOP2A P = 0.02). Using principal component analysis, expression of DNA repair genes was summarized into one variable. Genes whose expression correlated with this variable were predominantly associated with the cell cycle and DNA repair. In 42 patients treated with chemotherapy, DNA repair gene expression was greater in tumors from patients who progressed on treatment. Further data supportive of a role for increased expression of DNA repair genes as predictive biomarkers are reported, which were generated using multiplex PCR.
CONCLUSIONS: Overexpression of DNA repair genes (predominantly those involved in double-strand break repair) was associated with relapse. These data support the hypothesis that melanoma progression requires maintenance of genetic stability and give insight into mechanisms of melanoma drug resistance and potential therapies.

Gottipati P, Vischioni B, Schultz N, et al.
Poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase is hyperactivated in homologous recombination-defective cells.
Cancer Res. 2010; 70(13):5389-98 [PubMed] Related Publications
Poly(ADP-ribose) (PAR) polymerase 1 (PARP1) is activated by DNA single-strand breaks (SSB) or at stalled replication forks to facilitate DNA repair. Inhibitors of PARP efficiently kill breast, ovarian, or prostate tumors in patients carrying hereditary mutations in the homologous recombination (HR) genes BRCA1 or BRCA2 through synthetic lethality. Here, we surprisingly show that PARP1 is hyperactivated in replicating BRCA2-defective cells. PARP1 hyperactivation is explained by the defect in HR as shRNA depletion of RAD54, RAD52, BLM, WRN, and XRCC3 proteins, which we here show are all essential for efficient HR and also caused PARP hyperactivation and correlated with an increased sensitivity to PARP inhibitors. BRCA2-defective cells were not found to have increased levels of SSBs, and PAR polymers formed in HR-defective cells do not colocalize to replication protein A or gammaH2AX, excluding the possibility that PARP hyperactivity is due to increased SSB repair or PARP induced at damaged replication forks. Resistance to PARP inhibitors can occur through genetic reversion in the BRCA2 gene. Here, we report that PARP inhibitor-resistant BRCA2-mutant cells revert back to normal levels of PARP activity. We speculate that the reason for the sensitivity of HR-defective cells to PARP inhibitors is related to the hyperactivated PARP1 in these cells. Furthermore, the presence of PAR polymers can be used to identify HR-defective cells that are sensitive to PARP inhibitors, which may be potential biomarkers.

Palmieri D, Lockman PR, Thomas FC, et al.
Vorinostat inhibits brain metastatic colonization in a model of triple-negative breast cancer and induces DNA double-strand breaks.
Clin Cancer Res. 2009; 15(19):6148-57 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: As chemotherapy and molecular therapy improve the systemic survival of breast cancer patients, the incidence of brain metastases increases. Few therapeutic strategies exist for the treatment of brain metastases because the blood-brain barrier severely limits drug access. We report the pharmacokinetic, efficacy, and mechanism of action studies for the histone deactylase inhibitor vorinostat (suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid) in a preclinical model of brain metastasis of triple-negative breast cancer.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: The 231-BR brain trophic subline of the MDA-MB-231 human breast cancer cell line was injected into immunocompromised mice for pharmacokinetic and metastasis studies. Pharmacodynamic studies compared histone acetylation, apoptosis, proliferation, and DNA damage in vitro and in vivo.
RESULTS: Following systemic administration, uptake of [(14)C]vorinostat was significant into normal rodent brain and accumulation was up to 3-fold higher in a proportion of metastases formed by 231-BR cells. Vorinostat prevented the development of 231-BR micrometastases by 28% (P = 0.017) and large metastases by 62% (P < 0.0001) compared with vehicle-treated mice when treatment was initiated on day 3 post-injection. The inhibitory activity of vorinostat as a single agent was linked to a novel function in vivo: induction of DNA double-strand breaks associated with the down-regulation of the DNA repair gene Rad52.
CONCLUSIONS: We report the first preclinical data for the prevention of brain metastasis of triple-negative breast cancer. Vorinostat is brain permeable and can prevent the formation of brain metastases by 62%. Its mechanism of action involves the induction of DNA double-strand breaks, suggesting rational combinations with DNA active drugs or radiation.

Tassone P, Di Martino MT, Ventura M, et al.
Loss of BRCA1 function increases the antitumor activity of cisplatin against human breast cancer xenografts in vivo.
Cancer Biol Ther. 2009; 8(7):648-53 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Previous reports suggested a central role of BRCA1 in DNA-damage repair mechanisms elicited by cell exposure to anti-tumor agents. Here we studied if BRCA1-defective HCC1937 or BRCA1-reconstituted HCC1937/(WT)BRCA1 human breast cancer xenografts (HBCXs) generated in SCID mice were differentially sensitive to cisplatin (CDDP) in vivo and we investigated potential molecular correlates of this effect.
RESULTS: CDDP induced almost complete growth inhibition of BRCA1-defective HBCXs, while BRCA1-reconstituted HBCXs were only partially inhibited. Cell cycle analysis showed a significant S- and G(2)/M blockade in BRCA1-defective as compared with parental BRCA1-reconstituted cells. Comparative gene expression profiling of HCC1937 and HCC1937/(WT)BRCA1 showed upregulation of RAD52 and XRCC4, whereas ERCC1 and RRM1 were downregulated. Pathway finder analysis of gene arrays data indicated perturbations of major proliferation and survival pathways suggesting that BRCA1 is mostly involved in G(2)/M but also in G(1)/S-phase checkpoints as well as in several important signaling pathways, including IGF, VEGF, estrogen receptor, PI3K/AKT and EGF.
METHODS: HCC1937 or HCC1937/(WT)BRCA1 HBCXs were generated in SCID mice. Animals were then weekly treated with 5 mg/kg CDDP i.p. or with vehicle for 4 w. Tumor volume and mice survival were evaluated. Tumors were retrieved from animals 12 hours after the last treatment with CDDP or vehicle treatment and the cell suspension underwent cell cycle analysis. Differential gene expression and pathway modulation between HCC1937 and HCC1937/(WT)BRCA1 cells were also studied.
CONCLUSION: Our data suggest that BRCA1-defective in vivo HBCXs express a molecular scenario predictive of high sensitivity to platinum-derived compounds strongly supporting the rationale for prospective tailored clinical trials in hereditary breast cancer.

Crosby ME, Kulshreshtha R, Ivan M, Glazer PM
MicroRNA regulation of DNA repair gene expression in hypoxic stress.
Cancer Res. 2009; 69(3):1221-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Genetic instability is a hallmark of cancer; the hypoxic tumor microenvironment has been implicated as a cause of this phenomenon. MicroRNAs (miR) are small nonprotein coding RNAs that can regulate various cellular pathways. We report here that two miRs, miR-210 and miR-373, are up-regulated in a hypoxia-inducible factor-1alpha-dependent manner in hypoxic cells. Bioinformatics analyses suggested that these miRs could regulate factors implicated in DNA repair pathways. Forced expression of miR-210 was found to suppress the levels of RAD52, which is a key factor in homology-dependent repair (HDR); the forced expression of miR-373 led to a reduction in the nucleotide excision repair (NER) protein, RAD23B, as well as in RAD52. Consistent with these results, both RAD52 and RAD23B were found to be down-regulated in hypoxia, but in both cases, the hypoxia-induced down-regulation could be partially reversed by antisense inhibition of miR-210 and miR-373. Importantly, luciferase reporter assays indicated that miR-210 is capable of interacting with the 3' untranslated region (UTR) of RAD52 and that miR-373 can act on the 3' UTR of RAD23B. These results indicate that hypoxia-inducible miR-210 and miR-373 play roles in modulating the expression levels of key proteins involved in the HDR and NER pathways, providing new mechanistic insight into the effect of hypoxia on DNA repair and genetic instability in cancer.

Siraj AK, Al-Rasheed M, Ibrahim M, et al.
RAD52 polymorphisms contribute to the development of papillary thyroid cancer susceptibility in Middle Eastern population.
J Endocrinol Invest. 2008; 31(10):893-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Genetic polymorphisms of DNA repair genes seem to determine the DNA repair capacity. We hypothesized that polymorphisms of genes responsible for DNA repair may be associated with risk of thyroid cancer. To evaluate the role of genetic polymorphisms of DNA repair genes in thyroid cancer, we conducted a hospital-based case-control study in Saudi population. Two hundred and twenty-three incident papillary thyroid cancer cases and 229 controls recruited from Saudi Arabian population were analyzed for 21 loci in 8 selected DNA repair genes by PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism including non-homologous end joining pathway genes LIGIV (LIGlV ASP62HIS, PRO231SER, TRP46TER), XRCC4 Splice 33243301G>A and XRCC7 ILE3434THR; homologous recombination pathway genes XRCC3 ARG94HIS and THR241MET, RAD51 UTR 15452658T>C, 15455419A>G, RAD52 2259 and GLN221GLU, conserved DNA damage response gene Tp53 PRO47SER, PRO72ARG, Tp53 UTR 7178189A>C and base excision repair gene XRCC1 ARG194TRP, ARG280HIS, ARG399GLN, ARG559GLN. RAD52 GLN221GLU genotypes CG and variants carrying G allele showed statistical significance and very high risk of developing thyroid cancer compared to wild type [CG vs CC; p<0.001, odds ratio (OR)=15.57, 95% confidence interval (CI)=6.56-36.98, CG+GG vs CC; p<0.001, OR=17.58, 95% CI=7.44-41.58]. Similarly, RAD52 2259 genotypes CT and variant allele T showed a significant difference in terms of risk estimation (CT vs CC; p<0.05, OR=1.53, 95% CI=1.03-2.28, CT+TT vs CC; p<0.001, OR=1.922, 95% CI=1.31-2.82). Remaining loci demonstrated no significance with risk. Of the 21 loci screened, RAD52 2259 and RAD52 GLN221GLU may be of importance to disease process and may be associated with papillary thyroid cancer risk in Saudi Arabian population.

Shin A, Lee KM, Ahn B, et al.
Genotype-phenotype relationship between DNA repair gene genetic polymorphisms and DNA repair capacity.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2008 Jul-Sep; 9(3):501-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
Genotype-phenotype relationships between genetic polymorphisms of DNA repair genes and DNA repair capacity were evaluated in a case-control study of breast cancer. Selected DNA repair genes included were those involved in double-strand break repair (ATM, XRCC2, XRCC4, XRCC6, LIG4, RAD51, RAD52), base excision repair (LIG1), nucleotide excision repair (ERCC1), and mismatch repair (hMLH1). The subjects consisted of histologically confirmed breast cancer cases (n=132) and controls (n=75) with no present or previous history of cancer. Seventeen single nucleotide polymorphisms of 10 genes (ATM -5144A>T, IVS21+1049T>C, IVS33-55T>C, IVS34+60G>A, and 3393T>G, XRCC2 31479G/A, XRCC4 921G/T, XRCC6 1796G/T, LIG4 1977T/C, RAD51 135G/C, 172G/T, RAD52 2259C/T, LIG1 583A/C, ERCC1 8092A/C, 354C/T, hMLH1 5' region -93G/A, 655A/G) were determined by TaqMan assay (ATM) or MALDI-TOF (all other genes). DNA repair capacity was measured by a host cell reactivation assay of repair of ultraviolet damage. The DNA repair capacity (%) did not differ between cases (median 37.2, interquartile range: 23.6-59.6) and controls (median 32.7, interquartile range: 26.7-53.2). However, DNA repair capacity significantly differed by the genotypes of ATM and RAD51 genes among cancer-free controls. Our findings suggest that DNA repair capacity might be influenced by genetic polymorphisms of DNA damage response genes and DNA repair genes.

Powell SN, Kachnic LA
Therapeutic exploitation of tumor cell defects in homologous recombination.
Anticancer Agents Med Chem. 2008; 8(4):448-60 [PubMed] Related Publications
In the decade since the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes were cloned, much has been learned about the function of these two major causes of familial breast cancer. BRCA2 has been shown to play a direct role in the repair of DNA by homologous recombination, by interacting with the Rad51 protein and facilitating the formation of Rad51 aggregates at the site of DNA damage. It likely plays a similar role when double strand breaks are created in the course of normal DNA replication; the absence of BRCA2 results in chromosomal instability, which is likely secondary to the defect in DNA repair. In the absence of BRCA2, the cell is more dependent on residual repair via Rad52, which makes Rad52 a target for therapy in BRCA-deficient tumors. BRCA1 plays a role in sensing DNA damage and replication stress and mediating the signaling responses. Therefore, in addition to its role in mediating DNA repair by homologous recombination via BRCA2, it can also signal cell cycle checkpoints and mediate other transcriptional responses to DNA damage. We have argued that the mechanism of cancer susceptibility from BRCA1 or BRCA2 deficiency is mediated via the defect in homologous recombination, since it is the main feature they share in common. We and others have recently demonstrated that the defect in homologous recombination changes the drug sensitivity profile, rendering the BRCA-deficient breast cancers sensitive to MitomycinC, cisplatin, etoposide and other drugs that produce complex double-stranded lesions in DNA. Furthermore, they show resistance to taxanes and navelbine. Fanconi anemia defective cells also show sensitivity to the same class of drugs, although their defect in homologous recombination in response to strand breaks appears less marked than in BRCA-deficient cells. However, Fanconi anemia cells also show chromosomal fragility, and appear to have defects in maintenance of the replication fork. Therefore, knowledge of whether this specific DNA repair pathway of homologous recombination is defective in breast cancer cells would be valuable information in planning optimized individual therapy. We have developed techniques to measure the functional integrity of homologous recombination in human breast cancers. Core biopsy samples are obtained and immediately irradiated ex vivo, allowing 3-4 hours for the appearance of Rad51, BRCA1 and FancD2 foci. Thin sections are obtained, permeabilized and stained by immunofluorescent techniques. We have identified tumors with defects in the ability to form Rad51 and BRCA1 foci, where there is no known genetic predisposition, implying that this BRCA-dependent repair pathway may be inactivated in sporadic as well as familial breast cancers. Thus, functional assays of homologous recombination could become a useful technique to determine phenotype of human breast cancer, which in turn will influence the choice of therapy.

Danoy P, Michiels S, Dessen P, et al.
Variants in DNA double-strand break repair and DNA damage-response genes and susceptibility to lung and head and neck cancers.
Int J Cancer. 2008; 123(2):457-63 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cigarette smoking is the major risk factor for lung cancer, and together with alcohol for head and neck (H--N) cancer. These genotoxics produced DNA damage and particularly double-strand breaks (DSB) that are removed by various repair pathways. To understand the initiation of these cancers, we performed a genotype analysis to correlate some variants in specific genes in a case-control study of lung and H-N cancers. In a discovery phase, we sequenced DNA samples of 32 healthy Caucasians to describe genetic variants in 30 genes involved in the repair of DSB and in DNA damage response. 625 variants were detected on 29 out of the 30 genes successfully screened by sequencing exons, parts of introns and flanking regions. These included 470 non-exonic variants, from which 33 insertions/deletions, and 155 exonic alterations, corresponding to 59 non synonymous polymorphisms. 223 of these variants were not previously described. In total, 379 variants were successfully genotyped in a case-control study restricted to smokers including 151 lung cases, 251 H-N cases, and 172 controls. To account for multiple testing, we associated to each p-value a proportion of false positives (q-value). Haplotype-analysis suggested potential associations (p < 0.05) between lung cancer and 2 genes (RECQL4 and RAD52), which came with q-value of 8%, and between H-N cancer and 1 gene (DNA-PK) but with q-value of 56%. The 3 genes are key players for regulating the efficiency of DSB repair. Large-scale studies are needed to show if any of these 3 variants are truly associated with an increased risk of cancer.

Wray J, Liu J, Nickoloff JA, Shen Z
Distinct RAD51 associations with RAD52 and BCCIP in response to DNA damage and replication stress.
Cancer Res. 2008; 68(8):2699-707 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
RAD51 has critical roles in homologous recombination (HR) repair of DNA double-strand breaks (DSB) and restarting stalled or collapsed replication forks. In yeast, Rad51 function is facilitated by Rad52 and other "mediators." Mammalian cells express RAD52, but BRCA2 may have supplanted RAD52 in mediating RAD51 loading onto ssDNA. BCCIP interacts with BRCA2, and both proteins are important for RAD51 focus formation after ionizing radiation and HR repair of DSBs. Nonetheless, mammalian RAD52 shares biochemical activities with yeast Rad52, including RAD51 binding and single-strand annealing, suggesting a conserved role in HR. Because RAD52 and RAD51 associate, and RAD51 and BCCIP associate, we investigated the colocalization of RAD51 with BCCIP and RAD52 in human cells. We found that RAD51 colocalizes with BCCIP early after ionizing radiation, with RAD52 later, and there was little colocalization of BCCIP and RAD52. RAD52 foci are induced to a greater extent by hydroxyurea, which stalls replication forks, than by ionizing radiation. Using fluorescence recovery after photo bleaching, we show that RAD52 mobility is reduced to a greater extent by hydroxyurea than ionizing radiation. However, BCCIP showed no changes in mobility after hydroxyurea or ionizing radiation. We propose that BCCIP-dependent repair of DSBs by HR is an early RAD51 response to ionizing radiation-induced DNA damage, and that RAD52-dependent HR occurs later to restart a subset of blocked or collapsed replication forks. RAD52 and BRCA2 seem to act in parallel pathways, suggesting that targeting RAD52 in BRCA2-deficient tumors may be effective in treating these tumors.

Sellick G, Fielding S, Qureshi M, et al.
Germline mutations in RAD51, RAD51AP1, RAD51B, RAD51C,RAD51D, RAD52 and RAD54L do not contribute to familial chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2008; 49(1):130-3 [PubMed] Related Publications
While familial predisposition to B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is well recognized no gene which when mutated in the germline has been unambiguously shown to confer susceptibility to the disease. An approach based on mutation screening methods targeted to coding regions of candidate genes offers an attractive strategy for the identification of rare disease-causing alleles. The RAD genes participate in the cellular response to DNA double strand breaks, detecting DNA damage, activating cell cycle checkpoints and apoptosis. Defects in members of these genes are linked to increased chromosomal instability and in lymphoma predisposition, thereby representing strong candidate susceptibility genes a priori. To examine this proposition we screened 75 familial CLL probands for germline mutations in this set of genes. No overt pathogenic mutations were identified. These findings indicate that germline mutations in RAD51, RAD51AP1, RAD51L1, RAD51L3, RAD52 and RAD54L are unlikely to be causal of an inherited predisposition to CLL.

Beesley J, Jordan SJ, Spurdle AB, et al.
Association between single-nucleotide polymorphisms in hormone metabolism and DNA repair genes and epithelial ovarian cancer: results from two Australian studies and an additional validation set.
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2007; 16(12):2557-65 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Although some high-risk ovarian cancer genes have been identified, it is likely that common low penetrance alleles exist that confer some increase in ovarian cancer risk. We have genotyped nine putative functional single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in genes involved in steroid hormone synthesis (SRD5A2, CYP19A1, HSB17B1, and HSD17B4) and DNA repair (XRCC2, XRCC3, BRCA2, and RAD52) using two Australian ovarian cancer case-control studies, comprising a total of 1,466 cases and 1,821 controls of Caucasian origin. Genotype frequencies in cases and controls were compared using logistic regression. The only SNP we found to be associated with ovarian cancer risk in both of these two studies was SRD5A2 V89L (rs523349), which showed a significant trend of increasing risk per rare allele (P = 0.00002). We then genotyped another SNP in this gene (rs632148; r(2) = 0.945 with V89L) in an attempt to validate this finding in an independent set of 1,479 cases and 2,452 controls from United Kingdom, United States, and Denmark. There was no association between rs632148 and ovarian cancer risk in the validation samples, and overall, there was no significant heterogeneity between the results of the five studies. Further analyses of SNPs in this gene are therefore warranted to determine whether SRD5A2 plays a role in ovarian cancer predisposition.

Kantidze OL, Razin SV
Chemotherapy-related secondary leukemias: A role for DNA repair by error-prone non-homologous end joining in topoisomerase II - Induced chromosomal rearrangements.
Gene. 2007; 391(1-2):76-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chromosome rearrangements are believed to cause the secondary leukemias which constitute frequent complications of antitumor chemotherapy with topoisomerase II-specific drugs. Here we show that inhibition of DNA topoisomerase II in cultured cells stimulates association of components of the non-homologous end joining system with a known breakpoint cluster region of the human AML1 gene, suggesting that errors of DNA repair during NHEJ may be the cause of illegitimate recombination in cells treated with topoisomerase II poisons.

Galamb O, Sipos F, Dinya E, et al.
mRNA expression, functional profiling and multivariate classification of colon biopsy specimen by cDNA overall glass microarray.
World J Gastroenterol. 2006; 12(43):6998-7006 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
AIM: To understand the local pathophysiological alterations and gene ontology-based functional classification of colonic biopsies into inflammatory and neoplastic diseases.
METHODS: Total RNA was extracted from frozen biopsies and amplified by T7-method. Expression profile was evaluated by Atlas Glass 1K microarrays. After microarray quality control, applicable data were available from 10 adenomas, 6 colorectal adenocarcinomas (CRCs), and 6 inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs). Multivariate statistical and cell functional analyses were performed. Real-time RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry were used for validation.
RESULTS: Discriminant analysis of selected genes, could correctly reclassify all 22 samples using 4 parameters (heat shock transcription factor-1, bystin-like, calgranulin-A, TRAIL receptor 3). IBD samples were characterized by overregulated chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 13, replication protein A1, E74-like factor 2 and downregulated TNF receptor-associated factor 6, BCL2-interacting killer genes. In adenomas upregulation of TNF receptor-associated factor 6, replication protein A1, E74-like factor 2 and underexpression of BCL2-associated X protein, calgranulin-A genes were found. CRC cases had significantly increased epidermal growth factor receptor, topoisomerase-1, v-jun, TNF receptor-associated factor 6 and TRAIL receptor 3, and decreased RAD51 and RAD52 DNA repair gene, protein phosphatase-2A and BCL2-interacting killer mRNA levels. Epidermal growth factor receptor RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry, topoisomerase-1 RT-PCR confirmed the chip results.
CONCLUSION: Different histological alterations can be reclassified by functional, multivariate analysis using cDNA microarrays. Further studies with expanded sample number are needed for subclassification of pathological alterations.

Nowacka-Zawisza M, Bryś M, Hanna RM, et al.
Loss of heterozygosity and microsatellite instability at RAD52 and RAD54 loci in breast cancer.
Pol J Pathol. 2006; 57(2):83-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
This study was carried out to evaluate the loss of heterozygosity (LOH) and microsatellite instability (MSI) in breast cancer, in the 12p13.3 and 1p32 chromosomal regions where RAD52 and RAD54 genes are localized. Polymorphic markers D12S98, D12S1698 for RAD52 and D1S209, D1S411 for RAD54 were used. Relationships between LOH and clinicopathological parameters, i.e. tumor type and grade, patient's age, steroid receptors status and lymph node and distal metastases were assessed. For alleles frequency estimation 100 primary breast cancers were tested. DNA isolated from paraffin-embedded tissues and their matched blood samples were analyzed for PCR-based LOH and MSI by fluorescence-based DNA sequencing technology. In analyzed cases LOH was found in 14% and 11% of informative cases for D12S98 and D12S1698 markers, respectively and in 18% and 17% of informative cases for D1S209 and D1S411 markers, respectively. The highest frequency of MSI was identified at loci D12S98 (10%) and D1S209 (11%). Significant correlations between RAD52 and RAD54 regions with concomitant LOH and histological type and progesterone receptor status were observed. In the case of RAD54 further correlations with respect to tumor grade and the presence of distal metastases were noticed.

Manuguerra M, Matullo G, Veglia F, et al.
Multi-factor dimensionality reduction applied to a large prospective investigation on gene-gene and gene-environment interactions.
Carcinogenesis. 2007; 28(2):414-22 [PubMed] Related Publications
It is becoming increasingly evident that single-locus effects cannot explain complex multifactorial human diseases like cancer. We applied the multi-factor dimensionality reduction (MDR) method to a large cohort study on gene-environment and gene-gene interactions. The study (case-control nested in the EPIC cohort) was established to investigate molecular changes and genetic susceptibility in relation to air pollution and environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) in non-smokers. We have analyzed 757 controls and 409 cases with bladder cancer (n=124), lung cancer (n=116) and myeloid leukemia (n=169). Thirty-six gene variants (DNA repair and metabolic genes) and three environmental exposure variables (measures of air pollution and ETS at home and at work) were analyzed. Interactions were assessed by prediction error percentage and cross-validation consistency (CVC) frequency. For lung cancer, the best model was given by a significant gene-environment association between the base excision repair (BER) XRCC1-Arg399Gln polymorphism, the double-strand break repair (DSBR) BRCA2-Asn372His polymorphism and the exposure variable 'distance from heavy traffic road', an indirect and robust indicator of air pollution (mean prediction error of 26%, P<0.001, mean CVC of 6.60, P=0.02). For bladder cancer, we found a significant 4-loci association between the BER APE1-Asp148Glu polymorphism, the DSBR RAD52-3'-untranslated region (3'-UTR) polymorphism and the metabolic gene polymorphisms COMT-Val158Met and MTHFR-677C>T (mean prediction error of 22%, P<0.001, mean CVC consistency of 7.40, P<0.037). For leukemia, a 3-loci model including RAD52-2259C>T, MnSOD-Ala9Val and CYP1A1-Ile462Val had a minimum prediction error of 31% (P<0.001) and a maximum CVC of 4.40 (P=0.086). The MDR method seems promising, because it provides a limited number of statistically stable interactions; however, the biological interpretation remains to be understood.

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