Synthetic lethality through combinatorial targeting DNA damage response (DDR) pathways provides exciting anticancer therapeutic benefit. Currently, the long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been implicated in tumor drug resistance; however, their potential significance in DDR is still largely unknown. Here, we report that a human lncRNA, CTD-2256P15.2, encodes a micropeptide, named PAR-amplifying and CtIP-maintaining micropeptide (PACMP), with a dual function to maintain CtIP abundance and promote poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation. PACMP not only prevents CtIP from ubiquitination through inhibiting the CtIP-KLHL15 association but also directly binds DNA damage-induced poly(ADP-ribose) chains to enhance PARP1-dependent poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation. Targeting PACMP alone inhibits tumor growth by causing a synthetic lethal interaction between CtIP and PARP inhibitions and confers sensitivity to PARP/ATR/CDK4/6 inhibitors, ionizing radiation, epirubicin, and camptothecin. Our findings reveal that a lncRNA-derived micropeptide regulates cancer progression and drug resistance by modulating DDR, whose inhibition could be employed to augment the existing anticancer therapeutic strategies.
Keywords: CtIP; DNA damage response; DNA double-strand break repair; PARP inhibitor; drug resistance; long noncoding RNA; micropeptide; poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation; synthetic lethal.
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