Ionizing radiation-induced apoptosis via separate Pms2- and p53-dependent pathways

M. Zeng, L. Narayanan, X. S. Xu, T. A. Prolla, R. M. Liskay, P. M. Glazer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


The cytotoxicity of ionizing radiation (IR) has been associated with both the p53 pathway and with DNA mismatch repair (MMR). p53 mediates cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in response to X-ray damage, whereas the MMR complex is thought to recognize damaged bases and initiate a signal transduction pathway that can include phosphorylation of p53. To determine whether p53 and MMR mediate X-ray cytotoxicity via the same pathway, mice with targeted disruptions in either the p53 gene or the MutL homologue MMR gene Pms2 were interbred and primary fibroblasts were established from the progeny with genotypes of either wild type, p53 null, Pms2 null, or double null. Cells with either p53 or Pms2 separately disrupted showed reduced levels of apoptosis after IR in comparison with wild type, but the double null cells showed even lower levels, consistent with nonoverlapping roles for p53 and PMS2 in the X-ray response. In transformed cell lines established from the primary cells at early passage, similar differences in the apoptotic response to IR were seen, and clonogenic survival assays following low dose rate IR further showed that nullizygosity for Pms2 confers increased survival on cells in both wild-type and p53 null backgrounds. These results indicate that both p53 and MMR contribute to X-ray-induced apoptosis and that the role of MMR in the cytotoxicity of IR does not depend on p53.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4889-4893
Number of pages5
JournalCancer Research
Issue number17
StatePublished - Sep 1 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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