The DNA translocase RAD5A acts independently of the other main DNA repair pathways, and requires both its ATPase and RING domain for activity in Arabidopsis thaliana

Plant J. 2017 Aug;91(4):725-740. doi: 10.1111/tpj.13602. Epub 2017 Jun 25.


Multiple pathways exist to repair DNA damage induced by methylating and crosslinking agents in Arabidopsis thaliana. The SWI2/SNF2 translocase RAD5A, the functional homolog of budding yeast Rad5 that is required for the error-free branch of post-replicative repair, plays a surprisingly prominent role in the repair of both kinds of lesions in Arabidopsis. Here we show that both the ATPase domain and the ubiquitination function of the RING domain of the Arabidopsis protein are essential for the cellular response to different forms of DNA damage. To define the exact role of RAD5A within the complex network of DNA repair pathways, we crossed the rad5a mutant line with mutants of different known repair factors of Arabidopsis. We had previously shown that RAD5A acts independently of two main pathways of replication-associated DNA repair defined by the helicase RECQ4A and the endonuclease MUS81. The enhanced sensitivity of all double mutants tested in this study indicates that the repair of damaged DNA by RAD5A also occurs independently of nucleotide excision repair (AtRAD1), single-strand break repair (AtPARP1), as well as microhomology-mediated double-strand break repair (AtTEB). Moreover, RAD5A can partially complement for a deficient AtATM-mediated DNA damage response in plants, as the double mutant shows phenotypic growth defects.

Keywords: Arabidopsis thaliana; DNA damage tolerance; double-strand break repair; excision repair; post-replicative repair; single-strand break repair.

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Triphosphatases / genetics
  • Adenosine Triphosphatases / metabolism
  • Arabidopsis / enzymology*
  • Arabidopsis / genetics
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / genetics
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / metabolism*
  • DNA Damage
  • DNA Helicases / genetics
  • DNA Helicases / metabolism
  • DNA Repair*
  • Protein Domains
  • Ubiquitination


  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • RAD5a protein, Arabidopsis
  • Adenosine Triphosphatases
  • DNA Helicases