University of Massachusetts Medical School Faculty Publications


Human Rad51 promotes mitochondrial DNA synthesis under conditions of increased replication stress

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Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology

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Rad51 Recombinase; DNA, Mitochondrial; DNA Replication


Biochemistry | Molecular Biology | Molecular Genetics


Homologous recombination is essential for productive DNA replication particularly under stress conditions. We previously demonstrated a stress-induced recruitment of Rad51 to mitochondria and a critical need for its activity in the maintenance of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number. Using the human osteosarcoma cell line U20S, we show in the present study that recruitment of Rad51 to mitochondria under stress conditions requires ongoing mtDNA replication. Additionally, Rad51 levels in mitochondria increase in cells recovering from mtDNA depletion. Our findings highlight an important new role for Rad51 in supporting mtDNA replication, and further promote the idea that recombination is indispensable for sustaining DNA synthesis under conditions of replication stress.

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Citation: Mitochondrion. 2013 Jul;13(4):350-6. doi: 10.1016/j.mito.2013.04.004. Link to article on publisher's site

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