Double-strand break repair mediated by DNA end-joining

Genes Cells. 1998 Mar;3(3):135-44. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2443.1998.00180.x.


DNA double-strand breaks formed by ionizing irradiation or other stresses are repaired by homologous recombination or DNA end-joining. This review focuses on the mechanism of double-strand break repair mediated by DNA end-joining, in which many factors have recently been identified. After DNA double-strand breakage, DNA end-joining takes place between the DNA ends that have nonhomologous sequences or very short regions ofhomology. The broken DNA is repaired if the DNA end-joining occurs in the same molecule, while it causes chromosome aberrations such as deletions, insertions, translocations and inversions if it occurs between different molecules. Rad50 and its relatives, Ku-proteins, DNA ligase VI and silencing factors, are involved in DNA end-joining in yeast and mammalian cells. These findings led us to propose a model in which the formation of a heterochromatin-like complex at broken ends is an important element in DNA end-joining.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA / chemistry*
  • DNA / genetics*
  • DNA Repair*
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • Recombination, Genetic


  • DNA