Activation and regulation of ATM kinase activity in response to DNA double-strand breaks

Oncogene. 2007 Dec 10;26(56):7741-8. doi: 10.1038/sj.onc.1210872.


The ataxia-telangiectasia-mutated (ATM) protein kinase is rapidly and specifically activated in response to DNA double-strand breaks in eukaryotic cells. In this review, we summarize recent insights into the mechanism of ATM activation, focusing on the role of the Mre11/Rad50/Nbs1 (MRN) complex in this process. We also compare observations of the ATM activation process in different biological systems and highlight potential candidates for cellular factors that may participate in regulating ATM activity in human cells.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acid Anhydride Hydrolases
  • Animals
  • Ataxia Telangiectasia
  • Ataxia Telangiectasia Mutated Proteins
  • Cell Cycle Proteins / genetics*
  • Cell Cycle Proteins / metabolism
  • DNA Breaks, Double-Stranded*
  • DNA Repair
  • DNA Repair Enzymes / genetics
  • DNA Repair Enzymes / metabolism
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics*
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • MRE11 Homologue Protein
  • Nuclear Proteins / genetics
  • Nuclear Proteins / metabolism
  • Phosphorylation
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / genetics*
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / genetics*
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / metabolism


  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • MRE11 protein, human
  • NBN protein, human
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins
  • ATM protein, human
  • Ataxia Telangiectasia Mutated Proteins
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • MRE11 Homologue Protein
  • Acid Anhydride Hydrolases
  • Rad50 protein, human
  • DNA Repair Enzymes