The Recognition of DNA Damage

Curr Opin Genet Dev. 1996 Feb;6(1):19-25. doi: 10.1016/s0959-437x(96)90005-2.


DNA strand breaks are potentially mutagenic and must, therefore, be recognized and repaired. Recent work has identified DNA polymerase epsilon, Ku, and proteins such as DNA-PKcs, Mec1 and Tel1 as key players in DNA damage recognition pathways. Studies on these and other factors have provided important insights into the mechanisms of DNA repair and how DNA damage signals are transduced to the transcription and cell cycle machineries. This work also suggests how deficiencies in DNA damage detection systems can result in genetic instability and cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • DNA Damage / physiology*
  • DNA Repair / physiology*
  • DNA-Activated Protein Kinase
  • DNA-Binding Proteins*
  • DNA-Directed DNA Polymerase / metabolism
  • Enzyme Activation
  • Humans
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • Phosphotransferases (Alcohol Group Acceptor) / metabolism*
  • Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerases / metabolism*
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*


  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerases
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • Phosphotransferases (Alcohol Group Acceptor)
  • DNA-Activated Protein Kinase
  • PRKDC protein, human
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • DNA-Directed DNA Polymerase