The Fanconi Anemia Protein, FANCG, Binds to the ERCC1-XPF Endonuclease via Its Tetratricopeptide Repeats and the Central Domain of ERCC1

2010-07-06T00:00:00Z (GMT) by Chuan Wang Muriel W. Lambert
There is evidence that Fanconi anemia (FA) proteins play an important role in the repair of DNA interstrand cross-links (ICLs), but the precise mechanism by which this occurs is not clear. One of the critical steps in the ICL repair process involves unhooking of the cross-link from DNA by incisions on one strand on either side of the ICL and its subsequent removal. The ERCC1-XPF endonuclease is involved in this unhooking step and in the removal of the cross-link. We have previously shown that several of the FA proteins are needed to produce incisions created by ERCC1-XPF at sites of ICLs. To more clearly establish a link between FA proteins and the incision step(s) mediated by ERCC1-XPF, we undertook yeast two-hybrid analysis to determine whether FANCA, FANCC, FANCF, and FANCG directly interact with ERCC1 and XPF and, if so, to determine the sites of interaction. One of these FA proteins, FANCG, was found to have a strong affinity for ERCC1 and a moderate affinity for XPF. FANCG has been shown to contain seven tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR) motifs, which are motifs that mediate protein−protein interactions. Mapping the sites of interaction of FANCG with ERCC1, using site-directed mutagenesis, demonstrated that TPRs 1, 3, 5, and 6 are needed for binding of FANCG to ERCC1. ERCC1, in turn, was shown to interact with FANCG via its central domain, which is different from the region of ERCC1 that binds to XPF. This binding between FANCG and the ERCC1-XPF endonuclease, combined with our previous studies which show that FANCG is involved in the incision step mediated by ERCC1-XPF, establishes a link between an FA protein and the critical unhooking step of the ICL repair process.