Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Protein modifications regulate both DNA repair levels and pathway choice. How each modification achieves regulatory effects and how different modifications collaborate with each other are important questions to be answered. Here, we show that sumoylation regulates double-strand break repair partly by modifying the end resection factor Sae2. This modification is conserved from yeast to humans, and is induced by DNA damage. We mapped the sumoylation site of Sae2 to a single lysine in its self-association domain. Abolishing Sae2 sumoylation by mutating this lysine to arginine impaired Sae2 function in the processing and repair of multiple types of DNA breaks. We found that Sae2 sumoylation occurs independently of its phosphorylation, and the two modifications act in synergy to increase soluble forms of Sae2. We also provide evidence that sumoylation of the Sae2-binding nuclease, the Mre11-Rad50-Xrs2 complex, further increases end resection. These findings reveal a novel role for sumoylation in DNA repair by regulating the solubility of an end resection factor. They also show that collaboration between different modifications and among multiple substrates leads to a stronger biological effect.

Original publication




Journal article


PLoS Genet

Publication Date





DNA Breaks, Double-Stranded, DNA Damage, DNA End-Joining Repair, DNA Repair, DNA-Binding Proteins, Endodeoxyribonucleases, Endonucleases, Exodeoxyribonucleases, Humans, Phosphorylation, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins, Solubility, Sumoylation