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Cleavage mechanism of human Mus81–Eme1 acting on Holliday-junction structures

By Ewan R. Taylor and Clare H. McGowan


Recombination-mediated repair plays a central role in maintaining genomic integrity during DNA replication. The human Mus81–Eme1 endonuclease is involved in recombination repair, but the exact structures it acts on in vivo are not known. Using kinetic and enzymatic analysis of highly purified recombinant enzyme, we find that Mus81–Eme1 catalyzes coordinate bilateral cleavage of model Holliday-junction structures. Using a self-limiting, cruciform-containing substrate, we demonstrate that bilateral cleavage occurs sequentially within the lifetime of the enzyme–substrate complex. Coordinate bilateral cleavage is promoted by the highly cooperative nature of the enzyme and results in symmetrical cleavage of a cruciform structure, thus, Mus81–Eme1 can ensure coordinate, bilateral cleavage of Holliday junction-like structures

Topics: Biological Sciences
Publisher: National Academy of Sciences
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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