Modulation of UvrD helicase activity by covalent DNA-protein cross-links

Anuradha Kumari, Irina G. Minko, Rebecca L. Smith, R. Stephen Lloyd, Amanda K. McCullough

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20 Scopus citations


UvrD (DNA helicase II) has been implicated in DNA replication, DNA recombination, nucleotide excision repair, and methyl-directed mismatch repair. The enzymatic function of UvrD is to translocate along a DNA strand in a 3′ to 5′ direction and unwind duplex DNA utilizing a DNA-dependent ATPase activity. In addition, UvrD interacts with many other proteins involved in the above processes and is hypothesized to facilitate protein turnover, thus promoting further DNA processing. Although UvrD interactions with proteins bound to DNA have significant biological implications, the effects of covalent DNA-protein cross-links on UvrD helicase activity have not been characterized. Herein, we demonstrate that UvrD-catalyzed strand separation was inhibited on a DNA strand to which a 16-kDa protein was covalently bound. Our sequestration studies suggest that the inhibition of UvrD activity is most likely due to a translocation block and not helicase sequestration on the crosslink-containing DNA substrate. In contrast, no inhibition of UvrD-catalyzed strand separation was apparent when the protein was linked to the complementary strand. The latter result is surprising given the earlier observations that the DNA in this covalent complex is severely bent (∼70°), with both DNA strands making multiple contacts with the cross-linked protein. In addition, UvrD was shown to be required for replication of plasmid DNAs containing covalent DNA-protein complexes. Combined, these data suggest a critical role for UvrD in the processing of DNA-protein cross-links.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21313-21322
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number28
StatePublished - Jul 9 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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