Gene Summary

Gene:DDB1; damage specific DNA binding protein 1
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene is the large subunit (p127) of the heterodimeric DNA damage-binding (DDB) complex while another protein (p48) forms the small subunit. This protein complex functions in nucleotide-excision repair and binds to DNA following UV damage. Defective activity of this complex causes the repair defect in patients with xeroderma pigmentosum complementation group E (XPE) - an autosomal recessive disorder characterized by photosensitivity and early onset of carcinomas. However, it remains for mutation analysis to demonstrate whether the defect in XPE patients is in this gene or the gene encoding the small subunit. In addition, Best vitelliform mascular dystrophy is mapped to the same region as this gene on 11q, but no sequence alternations of this gene are demonstrated in Best disease patients. The protein encoded by this gene also functions as an adaptor molecule for the cullin 4 (CUL4) ubiquitin E3 ligase complex by facilitating the binding of substrates to this complex and the ubiquitination of proteins. [provided by RefSeq, May 2012]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:DNA damage-binding protein 1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 31 August, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
Show (18)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1994-2019)
Graph generated 31 August 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

  • Transcription Factors
  • Carrier Proteins
  • Xenograft Models
  • DNA Damage
  • Telomere Homeostasis
  • Transcription
  • Chromosome 11
  • Protein Binding
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Mutation
  • HEK293 Cells
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Ultraviolet Rays
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Cricetinae
  • DNA Repair
  • Apoptosis
  • Base Sequence
  • Cultured Cells
  • Proteolysis
  • Cullin Proteins
  • Cell Line
  • Signal Transduction
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Skin Cancer
  • Xeroderma Pigmentosum Group A Protein
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Pyrimidine Dimers
  • Cell Cycle
  • Transfection
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases
  • Cell Proliferation
  • DNA
  • HeLa Cells
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Histones
Tag cloud generated 31 August, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (2)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: DDB1 (cancer-related)

Liu R, Gao J, Yang Y, et al.
PHD finger protein 1 (PHF1) is a novel reader for histone H4R3 symmetric dimethylation and coordinates with PRMT5-WDR77/CRL4B complex to promote tumorigenesis.
Nucleic Acids Res. 2018; 46(13):6608-6626 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Histone post-translational modifications regulate chromatin structure and function largely through interactions with effector proteins that often contain multiple histone-binding domains. PHF1 [plant homeodomain (PHD) finger protein 1], which contains two kinds of histone reader modules, a Tudor domain and two PHD fingers, is an essential factor for epigenetic regulation and genome maintenance. While significant progress has been made in characterizing the function of the Tudor domain, the roles of the two PHD fingers are poorly defined. Here, we demonstrated that the N-terminal PHD finger of PHF1 recognizes symmetric dimethylation of H4R3 (H4R3me2s) catalyzed by PRMT5-WDR77. However, the C-terminal PHD finger of PHF1, instead of binding to modified histones, directly interacts with DDB1, the main component of the CUL4B-Ring E3 ligase complex (CRL4B), which is responsible for H2AK119 mono-ubiquitination (H2AK119ub1). We showed that PHF1, PRMT5-WDR77, and CRL4B reciprocally interact with one another and collaborate as a functional unit. Genome-wide analysis of PHF1/PRMT5/CUL4B targets identified a cohort of genes including E-cadherin and FBXW7, which are critically involved in cell growth and migration. We demonstrated that PHF1 promotes cell proliferation, invasion, and tumorigenesis in vivo and in vitro and found that its expression is markedly upregulated in a variety of human cancers. Our data identified a new reader for H4R3me2s and provided a molecular basis for the functional interplay between histone arginine methylation and ubiquitination. The results also indicated that PHF1 is a key factor in cancer progression, supporting the pursuit of PHF1 as a target for cancer therapy.

Zhang C, Chen B, Jiang K, et al.
Activation of TNF-α/NF-κB axis enhances CRL4B
Mol Oncol. 2018; 12(4):476-494 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cullin 4B, a member of the Cullins, which serve as scaffolds to facilitate the assembly of E3 ligase complexes, is aberrantly expressed in many cancers, including osteosarcoma. Recently, we observed that CUL4B forms the CRL4B

Fox CR, Parks GD
Parainfluenza Virus Infection Sensitizes Cancer Cells to DNA-Damaging Agents: Implications for Oncolytic Virus Therapy.
J Virol. 2018; 92(7) [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
A parainfluenza virus 5 (PIV5) with mutations in the P/V gene (P/V-CPI

Winter GE, Mayer A, Buckley DL, et al.
BET Bromodomain Proteins Function as Master Transcription Elongation Factors Independent of CDK9 Recruitment.
Mol Cell. 2017; 67(1):5-18.e19 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Processive elongation of RNA Polymerase II from a proximal promoter paused state is a rate-limiting event in human gene control. A small number of regulatory factors influence transcription elongation on a global scale. Prior research using small-molecule BET bromodomain inhibitors, such as JQ1, linked BRD4 to context-specific elongation at a limited number of genes associated with massive enhancer regions. Here, the mechanistic characterization of an optimized chemical degrader of BET bromodomain proteins, dBET6, led to the unexpected identification of BET proteins as master regulators of global transcription elongation. In contrast to the selective effect of bromodomain inhibition on transcription, BET degradation prompts a collapse of global elongation that phenocopies CDK9 inhibition. Notably, BRD4 loss does not directly affect CDK9 localization. These studies, performed in translational models of T cell leukemia, establish a mechanism-based rationale for the development of BET bromodomain degradation as cancer therapy.

Cao J, Hou P, Chen J, et al.
The overexpression and prognostic role of DCAF13 in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Tumour Biol. 2017; 39(6):1010428317705753 [PubMed] Related Publications
DDB1 and CUL4 associated factor 13 (DCAF13) is a protein coding gene located on chromosome 8q22.3, which is a hotspot amplified in various cancers. DCAF13 has been reported to be frequently amplified in breast cancer patients. However, the genetic alteration and potential role of DCAF13 in other cancers, including hepatocellular carcinoma, have not been investigated yet. In this study, we found that DCAF13 was amplified in 14.7% of the cases and its expression was upregulated (p < 0.001) in hepatocellular carcinoma samples in The Cancer Genome Atlas dataset. Increased expression of DCAF13 was also noticed in 40 paired hepatocellular carcinoma and adjacent non-tumor tissues both at messenger RNA and protein levels (p = 0.0002 and 0.0016, respectively). A positive relationship was observed between augmented DCAF13 levels and poorer tumor grade (p = 0.005), and we also found that hepatocellular carcinoma patients with increased DCAF13 expression in their tumors had significantly poorer survival compared with those with decreased DCAF13 expression (median survival time: 45.73 and 70.53 months, respectively). Multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that DCAF13 was an independent prognostic predictor of survival in hepatocellular carcinoma patients. Gene ontology and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and genomes analysis indicated the potential role of DCAF13 as a crucial cell cycle regulator. Collectively, our findings revealed that the overexpression of DCAF13 in hepatocellular carcinoma was significantly associated with poor survival and may participate in the regulation of cell cycle progression.

Liu N, Zhang J, Yang X, et al.
HDM2 Promotes NEDDylation of Hepatitis B Virus HBx To Enhance Its Stability and Function.
J Virol. 2017; 91(16) [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Hepatitis B virus (HBV)-encoded X protein (HBx) plays a critical role in HBV-related hepatocarcinoma development. In this study, we demonstrate that HBx is specifically modified by NEDD8. We found that E3 ligase HDM2 promotes NEDDylation of HBx to enhance HBx stability by preventing its ubiquitination-mediated degradation. Consistently, analysis of 160 hepatocellular carcinoma patient specimens indicated that the amount of HDM2 protein correlates with HBx protein level. We identified that HBx K91 and K95 as the key HBx NEDDylation sites and observed that the NEDDylation-deficient HBx has shorter half-life. We generated Huh7 cell lines which ectopically express wild-type and NEDDylation-deficient HBx and found that NEDDylation-deficient HBx showed less chromatin localization and less DDB1 binding. Consistently, the expression of HBx-regulated genes (IL-8, MMP9, and YAP) and HBV transcription (the activity of HBV enhancer and the amount of pgRNA transcribed from cccDNA) were significantly higher in cells expressing wild-type (WT) HBx than that in cells expressing mutant HBx. In addition, HBx-expressing cells proliferated faster than control and mutant HBx-expressing cells. We also showed that the ability of WT HBx-expressing cells to form tumors in nude mice was significantly higher than that of mutant HBx-expressing cells. In conclusion, we revealed that E3 ligase HDM2 promotes NEDDylation of HBx to enhance HBx stability and chromatin localization, which in turn favors HBx-dependent transcriptional regulation, cell proliferation, and HBV-driven tumor growth.

An J, Ponthier CM, Sack R, et al.
pSILAC mass spectrometry reveals ZFP91 as IMiD-dependent substrate of the CRL4
Nat Commun. 2017; 8:15398 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Thalidomide and its derivatives lenalidomide and pomalidomide (IMiDs) are effective treatments of haematologic malignancies. It was shown that IMiDs impart gain-of-function properties to the CUL4-RBX1-DDB1-CRBN (CRL4

Lo JY, Spatola BN, Curran SP
WDR23 regulates NRF2 independently of KEAP1.
PLoS Genet. 2017; 13(4):e1006762 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cellular adaptation to stress is essential to ensure organismal survival. NRF2/NFE2L2 is a key determinant of xenobiotic stress responses, and loss of negative regulation by the KEAP1-CUL3 proteasome system is implicated in several chemo- and radiation-resistant cancers. Advantageously using C. elegans alongside human cell culture models, we establish a new WDR23-DDB1-CUL4 regulatory axis for NRF2 activity that operates independently of the canonical KEAP1-CUL3 system. WDR23 binds the DIDLID sequence within the Neh2 domain of NRF2 to regulate its stability; this regulation is not dependent on the KEAP1-binding DLG or ETGE motifs. The C-terminal domain of WDR23 is highly conserved and involved in regulation of NRF2 by the DDB1-CUL4 complex. The addition of WDR23 increases cellular sensitivity to cytotoxic chemotherapeutic drugs and suppresses NRF2 in KEAP1-negative cancer cell lines. Together, our results identify WDR23 as an alternative regulator of NRF2 proteostasis and uncover a cellular pathway that regulates NRF2 activity and capacity for cytoprotection independently of KEAP1.

Chen Z, Wang K, Hou C, et al.
Sci Rep. 2017; 7(1):1175 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cell cycle progression in mammals is strictly controlled by a number of cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) and CDK inhibitors (CKIs), the expression of which is often dysregulated in cancer cells. Our previous work revealed that Cullin 4B (CUL4B), a critical component of the Cullin4B-RING E3 ligase complex (CRL4B), is overexpressed in human osteosarcoma cells through an unknown mechanism. Here, we demonstrated that CUL4B forms an E3 ligase with RBX1 (RING-box 1), DDB1 (DNA damage binding protein 1), and DCAF11 (DDB1 and CUL4 associated factor 11) in human osteosarcoma cells. In vitro and in vivo ubiquitination analyses indicated that CRL4B

Fischer U, Kim E, Keller A, Meese E
Specific amplifications and copy number decreases during human neural stem cells differentiation towards astrocytes, neurons and oligodendrocytes.
Oncotarget. 2017; 8(16):25872-25884 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
There is growing evidence that gene amplifications are an attribute of normal cells during development and differentiation. During neural progenitor cell differentiation half of the genome is involved in amplification process. To answer the question how specific amplifications occur at different stages and in different lineages of differentiation we analyzed the genes CDK4, MDM2, EGFR, GINS2, GFAP, TP53, DDB1 and MDM4 in human neural stem cells that were induced to differentiate towards astrocytes, neurons and oligodendrocytes. We found specific amplification pattern for each of the eight analyzed genes both in undifferentiated neural stem and progenitor cells and in cells that were induced for differentiation. Different amplification patterns were also found between adherently grown neural stem cells and cells that were grown as spheres. The most frequently amplified genes were MDM2 and CDK4 with the latter amplified in all three lineages at all analyzed stages. Amplification of the analyzed genes was also found in four glioma stem-like cells. The combined amplification data of stem cells and of tumor stem cells can help to define cell populations at the origin of the tumor. Furthermore, we detected a decrease of gene copies at specific differentiation stages most frequently for MDM4. This study shows specific amplification pattern in defined stem cell populations within specific time windows during differentiation processes indicating that amplifications occur in an orderly sequence during the differentiation of human neural stem and progenitor cells.

Han P, Gao F, Liu H, et al.
Reduced mRNA expression of nucleotide excision repair genes in lymphocytes and risk of squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck.
Carcinogenesis. 2017; 38(5):504-510 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Nucleotide excision repair (NER) plays a critical role in the development of smoking-related cancers. We hypothesize that mRNA expression levels of NER genes are associated with risk of the squamous cell carcinoma of head and neck (SCCHN). To test this hypothesis, we conducted a case-control study of 260 SCCHN patients and 246 cancer-free controls by measuring the mRNA expression levels of eight core NER genes in cultured peripheral lymphocytes. Compared with the controls, cases had statistically significantly lower expression levels of DDB1 and ERCC3 (P = 0.015 and 0.041, respectively). Because DDB1 and ERCC3 expression levels were highly correlated, we used DDB1 for further multivariate analyses and modeling. After dividing the subjects by controls' quartiles of expression levels, we found an association between an increased risk of SCCHN and low DDB1 expression levels [adjusted ORs and 95% CIs: 1.92 and 1.11-3.32, 1.48 and 0.85-2.59, 2.00 and 1.15-3.45 for the 2nd-4th quartiles, respectively, compared with the 1st quartile; Ptrend = 0.026]. We also identified a multiplicative interaction between sex and DDB1 expression levels (P = 0.007). Finally, the expanded model with gene expression levels, in addition to demographic and clinical variables, on SCCHN risk was significantly improved, especially among men. In conclusion, reduced DDB1 expression levels were associated with an increased risk of SCCHN. However, these results need to be validated in larger studies.

Yan H, Bi L, Wang Y, et al.
Integrative analysis of multi-omics data reveals distinct impacts of DDB1-CUL4 associated factors in human lung adenocarcinomas.
Sci Rep. 2017; 7(1):333 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Many DDB1-CUL4 associated factors (DCAFs) have been identified and serve as substrate receptors. Although the oncogenic role of CUL4A has been well established, specific DCAFs involved in cancer development remain largely unknown. Here we infer the potential impact of 19 well-defined DCAFs in human lung adenocarcinomas (LuADCs) using integrative omics analyses, and discover that mRNA levels of DTL, DCAF4, 12 and 13 are consistently elevated whereas VBRBP is reduced in LuADCs compared to normal lung tissues. The transcriptional levels of DCAFs are significantly correlated with their gene copy number variations. SKIP2, DTL, DCAF6, 7, 8, 13 and 17 are frequently gained whereas VPRBP, PHIP, DCAF10, 12 and 15 are frequently lost. We find that only transcriptional level of DTL is robustly, significantly and negatively correlated with overall survival across independent datasets. Moreover, DTL-correlated genes are enriched in cell cycle and DNA repair pathways. We also identified that the levels of 25 proteins were significantly associated with DTL overexpression in LuADCs, which include significant decreases in protein level of the tumor supressor genes such as PDCD4, NKX2-1 and PRKAA1. Our results suggest that different CUL4-DCAF axis plays the distinct roles in LuADC development with possible relevance for therapeutic target development.

Cheng L, Yang Q, Li C, et al.
DDA1, a novel oncogene, promotes lung cancer progression through regulation of cell cycle.
J Cell Mol Med. 2017; 21(8):1532-1544 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Lung cancer is globally widespread and associated with high morbidity and mortality. DDA1 (DET1 and DDB1 associated 1) was first discovered and registered in the GenBank database by our colleagues. DDA1, an evolutionarily conserved gene, might have significant functions. Recent reports have demonstrated that DDA1 is linked to the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway and facilitates the degradation of target proteins. However, the function of DDA1 in lung cancer was previously unknown. This study aimed to investigate whether DDA1 contributes to tumorigenesis and progression of lung cancer. We found that the expression of DDA1 in normal lung cells and tissue was significantly lower than that in lung cancer and was associated with poor prognosis. DDA1 overexpression promoted proliferation of lung tumour cells and facilitated cell cycle progression in vitro and subcutaneous xenograft tumour progression in vivo. Mechanistically, this was associated with the regulation of S phase and cyclins including cyclin D1/D3/E1. These results indicate that DDA1 promotes lung cancer progression, potentially through promoting cyclins and cell cycle progression. Therefore, DDA1 may be a potential novel target for lung cancer treatment, and a biomarker for tumour prognosis.

Liu Z, Yanagisawa K, Griesing S, et al.
TTF-1/NKX2-1 binds to DDB1 and confers replication stress resistance to lung adenocarcinomas.
Oncogene. 2017; 36(26):3740-3748 [PubMed] Related Publications
TTF-1, also known as NKX2-1, is a transcription factor that has indispensable roles in both lung development and physiology. We and others have reported that TTF-1 frequently exhibits high expression with increased copy number in lung adenocarcinomas, and also has a role as a lineage-survival oncogene through transcriptional activation of crucial target genes including ROR1 and LMO3. In the present study, we employed a global proteomic search for proteins that interact with TTF-1 in order to provide a more comprehensive picture of this still enigmatic lineage-survival oncogene. Our results unexpectedly revealed a function independent of its transcriptional activity, as TTF-1 was found to interact with DDB1 and block its binding to CHK1, which in turn attenuated ubiquitylation and subsequent degradation of CHK1. Furthermore, TTF-1 overexpression conferred resistance to cellular conditions under DNA replication stress (RS) and prevented an increase in consequential DNA double-strand breaks, as reflected by attenuated induction of pCHK2 and γH2AX. Our findings suggest that the novel non-transcriptional function of TTF-1 identified in this study may contribute to lung adenocarcinoma development by conferring tolerance to DNA RS, which is known to be inherently elicited by activation of various oncogenes.

Li L, Bai H, Yang J, et al.
Genome-wide DNA copy number analysis in clonally expanded human ovarian cancer cells with distinct invasive/migratory capacities.
Oncotarget. 2017; 8(9):15136-15148 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Ovarian cancer has the worst prognosis of any gynecological malignancy, and generally presents with metastasis at advanced stages. Copy number variation (CNV) frequently contributes to the alteration of oncogenic drivers. In this study, we sought to identify genetic targets in heterogeneous clones from human ovarian cancers cells. We used array-based technology to systematically assess all the genes with CNVs in cell models clonally expanded from A2780 and SKOV3 ovarian cancer cell lines with distinct highly and minimally invasive/migratory capacities. We found that copy number alterations differed between matched highly and minimally invasive/migratory subclones, differentially affecting specific functional processes including immune response processes, DNA damage repair, cell cycle and cell proliferation. We also identified seven genes as strong candidates, including DDB1, ERCC1, ERCC2, PRPF19, BCAT1, CDKN1B and MARK4, by integrating the above data with gene expression and clinical outcome data. Thus, by determining the molecular signatures of heterogeneous invasive/migratory ovarian cancer cells, we identified genes that could be specifically targeted for the treatment and prognosis of advanced ovarian cancers.

Blasiak J
DNA-Damaging Anticancer Drugs - A Perspective for DNA Repair- Oriented Therapy.
Curr Med Chem. 2017; 24(15):1488-1503 [PubMed] Related Publications
DNA-damaging drugs in cancer present two main problems: therapeutic resistance and side effects and both can associate with DNA repair, which can be targeted in cancer therapy. Bleomycin (BLM) induces complex DNA damages, including strand breaks, base loss and 3'-phosphoglycolate (3'PG) residues repaired by several pathways, but 3'PGs must be processed to the 3'-OH ends, usually by tyrosyl-DNA phosphodiesterase 1 (Tdp1). Therefore, targeting Tdp1 can improve anticancer therapy with BLM. Mitomycin C (MMC) produces a variety of adducts with DNA, including inter-strand cross-links (ICLs) and Xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) proteins, including XPG, XPE and XPF can be crucial for the initial stage of ICL repair, so they can be targeted by inhibitors to increase toxicity of MMC in cancer cells. Although these proteins are essential for nucleotide excision repair (NER), their decreased activity may not be fatal in normal cells as almost all NER substrates can be repaired by other pathways. Four-stranded DNA, resulted mainly from guanine quadruplexes (G-4s), are highly overexpressed at the end of telomeres, where they can inhibit telomerase, hence stabilization G-4s at the telomeres ends can hamper proliferation of cancer cells. Quadruplexes are also found in the promoters of genes important for cancer and are resolved by DNA helicases, which can be targeted in cancer along with stabilization of quadruplexes. As cancer cells often have defects in DNA repair pathway(s), they can be subjected by synthetic lethality, with the most promising results with poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase 1 (PARP-1) and DNA-dependent protein kinase, catalytic subunit (DNA-PKCS).

Gao S, Geng C, Song T, et al.
Activation of c-Abl Kinase Potentiates the Anti-myeloma Drug Lenalidomide by Promoting DDA1 Protein Recruitment to the CRL4 Ubiquitin Ligase.
J Biol Chem. 2017; 292(9):3683-3691 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cullin-RING ligase 4 (CRL4), a complex of Cul4 and DDB1, regulates the cell cycle, DNA damage repair, and chromatin replication by targeting a variety of substrates for ubiquitination. CRL4 is also hijacked by viral proteins or thalidomide-derived compounds to degrade host restriction factors. Here we report that the c-Abl non-receptor kinase phosphorylates DDB1 at residue Tyr-316 to recruit a small regulatory protein, DDA1, leading to increased substrate ubiquitination. Pharmacological inhibition or genetic ablation of the Abl-DDB1-DDA1 axis decreases the ubiquitination of CRL4 substrates, including IKZF1 and IKZF3, in lenalidomide-treated multiple myeloma cells. Importantly, panobinostat, a recently approved anti-myeloma drug, and dexamethasone enhance lenalidomide-induced substrate degradation and cytotoxicity by activating c-Abl, therefore providing a mechanism underlying their combination with lenalidomide to treat multiple myeloma.

Yeomans A, Lemm E, Wilmore S, et al.
PEITC-mediated inhibition of mRNA translation is associated with both inhibition of mTORC1 and increased eIF2α phosphorylation in established cell lines and primary human leukemia cells.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(46):74807-74819 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Increased mRNA translation drives carcinogenesis and is an attractive target for the development of new anti-cancer drugs. In this work, we investigated effects of phenethylisothiocyanate (PEITC), a phytochemical with chemopreventive and anti-cancer activity, on mRNA translation. PEITC rapidly inhibited global mRNA translation in human breast cancer-derived MCF7 cells and mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs). In addition to the known inhibitory effects of PEITC on mTORC1 activity, we demonstrate that PEITC increased eIF2α phosphorylation. PEITC also increased formation of stress granules which are typically associated with eIF2α phosphorylation and accumulation of translationally stalled mRNAs. Analysis of genetically modified MEFs demonstrated that optimal inhibition of global mRNA translation by PEITC was dependent on eIF2α phosphorylation, but not mTORC1 inhibition. We extended this study into primary leukemic B cells derived from patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL). CLL cells were stimulated in vitro with anti-IgM to mimic binding of antigen, a major driver of this leukemia. In CLL cells, PEITC increased eIF2α phosphorylation, inhibited anti-IgM-induced mTORC1 activation and decreased both basal and anti-IgM-induced global mRNA translation. PEITC also inhibited transcription and translation of MYC mRNA and accumulation of the MYC oncoprotein, in anti-IgM-stimulated cells. Moreover, treatment of CLL cells with PEITC and the BTK kinase inhibitor ibrutinib decreased anti-IgM-induced translation and induced cell death to a greater extent than either agent alone. Therefore, PEITC can inhibit both global and mRNA specific translation (including MYC) via effects on multiple regulatory pathways. Inhibition of mRNA translation may contribute to the chemopreventive and anti-cancer effects of PEITC.

Budden T, Davey RJ, Vilain RE, et al.
Repair of UVB-induced DNA damage is reduced in melanoma due to low XPC and global genome repair.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(38):60940-60953 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
UVB exposure leads to DNA damage, which when unrepaired induces C>T transitions. These mutations are found throughout the melanoma genome, particularly in non-transcribed regions. The global genome repair (GGR) branch of nucleotide excision repair (NER) is responsible for repairing UV-induced DNA damage across non-transcribed and silent regions of the genome. This study aimed to examine the relationship between UVB and GGR in melanoma. DNA repair capacity and relative expression of NER in melanocytes and melanoma cell lines before and after treatment with UVB was quantified. Transcript expression from 196 melanomas was compared to clinical parameters including solar elastosis and whole transcriptome data collected. Melanoma cell lines showed significantly reduced DNA repair when compared to melanocytes, most significantly in the S phase of the cell cycle. Expression of GGR components XPC, DDB1 and DDB2 was significantly lower in melanoma after UVB. In the melanoma tumours, XPC expression correlated with age of diagnosis and low XPC conferred significantly poorer survival. The same trend was seen in the TCGA melanoma dataset. Reduced GGR in melanoma may contribute to the UV mutation spectrum of the melanoma genome and adds further to the growing evidence of the link between UV, NER and melanoma.

Ding Z, Zu S, Gu J
Evaluating the molecule-based prediction of clinical drug responses in cancer.
Bioinformatics. 2016; 32(19):2891-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
MOTIVATION: Molecule-based prediction of drug response is one major task of precision oncology. Recently, large-scale cancer genomic studies, such as The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA), provide the opportunity to evaluate the predictive utility of molecular data for clinical drug responses in multiple cancer types.
RESULTS: Here, we first curated the drug treatment information from TCGA. Four chemotherapeutic drugs had more than 180 clinical response records. Then, we developed a computational framework to evaluate the molecule based predictions of clinical responses of the four drugs and to identify the corresponding molecular signatures. Results show that mRNA or miRNA expressions can predict drug responses significantly better than random classifiers in specific cancer types. A few signature genes are involved in drug response related pathways, such as DDB1 in DNA repair pathway and DLL4 in Notch signaling pathway. Finally, we applied the framework to predict responses across multiple cancer types and found that the prediction performances get improved for cisplatin based on miRNA expressions. Integrative analysis of clinical drug response data and molecular data offers opportunities for discovering predictive markers in cancer. This study provides a starting point to objectively evaluate the molecule-based predictions of clinical drug responses.
CONTACT: jgu@tsinghua.edu.cn
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

Yang Y, He S, Wang Q, et al.
Autophagic UVRAG Promotes UV-Induced Photolesion Repair by Activation of the CRL4(DDB2) E3 Ligase.
Mol Cell. 2016; 62(4):507-19 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
UV-induced DNA damage, a major risk factor for skin cancers, is primarily repaired by nucleotide excision repair (NER). UV radiation resistance-associated gene (UVRAG) is a tumor suppressor involved in autophagy. It was initially isolated as a cDNA partially complementing UV sensitivity in xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), but this was not explored further. Here we show that UVRAG plays an integral role in UV-induced DNA damage repair. It localizes to photolesions and associates with DDB1 to promote the assembly and activity of the DDB2-DDB1-Cul4A-Roc1 (CRL4(DDB2)) ubiquitin ligase complex, leading to efficient XPC recruitment and global genomic NER. UVRAG depletion decreased substrate handover to XPC and conferred UV-damage hypersensitivity. We confirmed the importance of UVRAG for UV-damage tolerance using a Drosophila model. Furthermore, increased UV-signature mutations in melanoma correlate with reduced expression of UVRAG. Our results identify UVRAG as a regulator of CRL4(DDB2)-mediated NER and suggest that its expression levels may influence melanoma predisposition.

Yamashita T, Okura M, Ishii-Osai Y, Hida T
Diagnosis of eight groups of xeroderma pigmentosum by genetic complementation using recombinant adenovirus vectors.
J Dermatol. 2016; 43(10):1167-1173 [PubMed] Related Publications
Because patients with xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) must avoid ultraviolet (UV) light from an early age, an early diagnosis of this disorder is essential. XP is composed of seven genetic complementation groups, XP-A to -G, and a variant type (XP-V). To establish an easy and accurate diagnosis of the eight disease groups, we constructed recombinant adenoviruses that expressed one of the XP cDNA. When fibroblasts derived from patients with XP-A, -B, -C, -D, -F or -G were infected with the adenovirus expressing XPA, XPB, XPC, XPD, XPF or XPG, respectively, and UV-C at 5-20 J/m

Rondinelli B, Rosano D, Antonini E, et al.
Histone demethylase JARID1C inactivation triggers genomic instability in sporadic renal cancer.
J Clin Invest. 2015; 125(12):4625-37 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Mutations in genes encoding chromatin-remodeling proteins are often identified in a variety of cancers. For example, the histone demethylase JARID1C is frequently inactivated in patients with clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC); however, it is largely unknown how JARID1C dysfunction promotes cancer. Here, we determined that JARID1C binds broadly to chromatin domains characterized by the trimethylation of lysine 9 (H3K9me3), which is a histone mark enriched in heterochromatin. Moreover, we found that JARID1C localizes on heterochromatin, is required for heterochromatin replication, and forms a complex with established players of heterochromatin assembly, including SUV39H1 and HP1α, as well as with proteins not previously associated with heterochromatin assembly, such as the cullin 4 (CUL4) complex adaptor protein DDB1. Transcription on heterochromatin is tightly suppressed to safeguard the genome, and in ccRCC cells, JARID1C inactivation led to the unrestrained expression of heterochromatic noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) that in turn triggered genomic instability. Moreover, ccRCC patients harboring JARID1C mutations exhibited aberrant ncRNA expression and increased genomic rearrangements compared with ccRCC patients with tumors endowed with other genetic lesions. Together, these data suggest that inactivation of JARID1C in renal cancer leads to heterochromatin disruption, genomic rearrangement, and aggressive ccRCCs. Moreover, our results shed light on a mechanism that underlies genomic instability in sporadic cancers.

Lai X, Chen S
Identification of Novel Biomarker and Therapeutic Target Candidates for Diagnosis and Treatment of Follicular Adenoma.
Cancer Genomics Proteomics. 2015 Nov-Dec; 12(6):271-81 [PubMed] Related Publications
Follicular adenoma is a type of benign and encapsulated nodule in the thyroid gland, but some adenomas have the potential to progress to follicular carcinoma. Therefore, it is important to monitor the state and progress of follicular adenoma in the clinic and discover drug development targets for the treatment of follicular adenoma to prevent its worsening to follicular carcinoma. Currently, the study of biomarkers and therapeutic targets lacks applications of up-to-date technologies, including proteomics and bioinformatics. To discover novel protein biomarker and therapeutic target candidates, a liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry approach was applied to directly compare follicular adenoma with normal thyroid tissue samples. The proteomics analysis revealed 114 protein biomarker candidates out of 1,780 identified and quantified proteins. A comprehensive approach to prioritize the biomarker candidates by category and rank revealed CD63, DDB1, TYMP, VDAC2, and DCXR as the top five biomarker candidates. Upstream regulator analysis using the Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA) software discovered four therapeutic target candidates for follicular adenoma, including TGFB1, MYC, ANGPT2, and NFE2L2. This study provided biomarker and therapeutic target candidates for a follow-up study, which will facilitate monitoring and treatment of follicular adenoma.

Xie X, Wang M, Mei J, et al.
Pyruvate kinase M2 interacts with DNA damage-binding protein 2 and reduces cell survival upon UV irradiation.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2015; 467(2):427-33 [PubMed] Related Publications
Pyruvate Kinase M2 (PKM2) is highly expressed in many solid tumors and associated with metabolism reprogramming and proliferation of tumors. Here, we report that PKM2 can bind to DNA Damage-Binding Protein 2 (DDB2), which is necessary for global nucleotide excision repair of UV induced DNA damage. The binding is promoted by UV irradiation and K433 acetylation of PKM2. Over expression of PKM2 facilitates phosphorylation of DDB2 and impairs DDB2-DDB1 binding. Furthermore, knocking down of PKM2 increases cell survival upon UV irradiation, while over expression of PKM2 reduces cell survival and over expression of DDB2-DDB1 reverts this effect. These results reveal a previously unknown regulation of PKM2 on DDB2 and provide a possible mechanism for UV induced tumorigenesis.

Qiao S, Guo W, Liao L, et al.
DDB2 is involved in ubiquitination and degradation of PAQR3 and regulates tumorigenesis of gastric cancer cells.
Biochem J. 2015; 469(3):469-80 [PubMed] Related Publications
DDB2 (damage-specific DNA-binding protein 2) is the product of the xeroderma pigmentosum group E gene which is involved in the initiation of nucleotide excision repair via an ubiquitin ligase complex together with DDB1 and CUL4A (cullin 4A). PAQR3 (progestin and adipoQ receptor family member III) is a newly discovered tumour suppressor that is implicated in the development of many types of human cancers. In the present paper, we report that DDB2 is involved in ubiquitination and degradation of PAQR3. DDB2 is able to interact with PAQR3 in vivo and in vitro. Both overexpression and knockdown experiments reveal that the protein expression level, protein stability and polyubiquitination of PAQR3 are changed by DDB2. Negative regulation of EGF (epidermal growth factor)- and insulin-induced signalling by PAQR3 is also altered by DDB2. At the molecular level, Lys(61) of PAQR3 is targeted by DDB2 for ubiquitination. The cell proliferation rate and migration of gastric cancer cells are inhibited by DDB2 knockdown and such effects are abrogated by PAQR3 knockdown, indicating that the effect of DDB2 on the cancer cells is mediated by PAQR3. Collectively, our studies not only pinpoint that DDB2 is a post-translational regulator of PAQR3, but also indicate that DDB2 may play an active role in tumorigenesis via regulating PAQR3.

Díaz-Rodríguez E, Pandiella A
Modulation of cereblon levels by anti-myeloma agents.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2016; 57(1):167-76 [PubMed] Related Publications
The use of thalidomide derivatives (IMIDs) has improved multiple myeloma prognosis, through an unknown mechanism of action. Recently one molecular target, the cereblon (CRBN) protein, has been identified. CRBN acts by binding to DDB1-CUL4-ROC1 forming a ubiquitin ligase multiprotein complex. We have generated antibodies to different regions of CRBN protein, and analyzed the biological consequences of augmenting or decreasing CRBN levels. CRBN was expressed in all the myeloma cell lines tested, independently of their sensitivity to IMIDs, and the CRBN-DDB1-CUL4 complex was efficiently formed. At the molecular level, long-term treatment with IMIDs induced a slight decrease in CRBN levels and a reduction in the CRBN-DDB1-CUL4 complex. Interestingly, treatment with other anti-myeloma drugs downregulated cellular contents of CRBN, and in a much faster fashion. These results suggest that CRBN is an important mediator of the cellular response to IMIDs, but also critical in the maintenance of cell viability and/or proliferation.

Mangino M, Christiansen L, Stone R, et al.
DCAF4, a novel gene associated with leucocyte telomere length.
J Med Genet. 2015; 52(3):157-62 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Leucocyte telomere length (LTL), which is fashioned by multiple genes, has been linked to a host of human diseases, including sporadic melanoma. A number of genes associated with LTL have already been identified through genome-wide association studies. The main aim of this study was to establish whether DCAF4 (DDB1 and CUL4-associated factor 4) is associated with LTL. In addition, using ingenuity pathway analysis (IPA), we examined whether LTL-associated genes in the general population might partially explain the inherently longer LTL in patients with sporadic melanoma, the risk for which is increased with ultraviolet radiation (UVR).
RESULTS: Genome-wide association (GWA) meta-analysis and de novo genotyping of 20 022 individuals revealed a novel association (p=6.4×10(-10)) between LTL and rs2535913, which lies within DCAF4. Notably, eQTL analysis showed that rs2535913 is associated with decline in DCAF4 expressions in both lymphoblastoid cells and sun-exposed skin (p=4.1×10(-3) and 2×10(-3), respectively). Moreover, IPA revealed that LTL-associated genes, derived from GWA meta-analysis (N=9190), are over-represented among genes engaged in melanoma pathways. Meeting increasingly stringent p value thresholds (p<0.05, <0.01, <0.005, <0.001) in the LTL-GWA meta-analysis, these genes were jointly over-represented for melanoma at p values ranging from 1.97×10(-169) to 3.42×10(-24).
CONCLUSIONS: We uncovered a new locus associated with LTL in the general population. We also provided preliminary findings that suggest a link of LTL through genetic mechanisms with UVR and melanoma in the general population.

Asnaghi L, Alkatan H, Mahale A, et al.
Identification of multiple DNA copy number alterations including frequent 8p11.22 amplification in conjunctival squamous cell carcinoma.
Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2014; 55(12):8604-13 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: Little is known about the molecular alterations that drive formation and growth of conjunctival squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC). We therefore sought to identify genetic changes that could be used as diagnostic markers or therapeutic targets.
METHODS: The DNA extracted from 10 snap-frozen cSCC tumor specimens and 2 in situ carcinomas was analyzed using array-based comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH), and further examined with NanoString and quantitative PCR.
RESULTS: The number of regions of DNA loss ranged from 1 to 23 per tumor, whereas gains and amplifications ranged from 1 to 15 per tumor. Most large regions of chromosomal gain and loss were confirmed by NanoString karyotype analysis. The commonest alteration was amplification of 8p11.22 in 9 tumors (75%), and quantitative PCR analysis revealed 100-fold or greater overexpression of ADAM3A mRNA from 8p11.22 locus. In addition, recurring losses were observed at 14q13.2 and 22q11.23, both lost in 5 (42%) of the 12 tumors, and at 12p13.31, lost in 4 (33%) of the 12 samples. Of the eight loci associated with the DNA damage repair syndrome xeroderma pigmentosum, three showed loss of at least one allele in our aCGH analysis, including XPA (9q22.33, one tumor), XPE/DDB2 (11p11.2, one tumor) and XPG/ERCC5 (13q33.1, three tumors).
CONCLUSIONS: Conjunctival SCC contains a range of chromosomal alterations potentially important in tumor formation and growth. Amplification of 8p11.22 and overexpression of ADAM3A suggests a potential role for this protease. Our findings also suggest that defects in DNA repair loci are important in sporadic cSCC.

Zhu YX, Braggio E, Shi CX, et al.
Identification of cereblon-binding proteins and relationship with response and survival after IMiDs in multiple myeloma.
Blood. 2014; 124(4):536-45 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cereblon (CRBN) mediates immunomodulatory drug (IMiD) action in multiple myeloma (MM). Using 2 different methodologies, we identified 244 CRBN binding proteins and established relevance to MM biology by changes in their abundance after exposure to lenalidomide. Proteins most reproducibly binding CRBN (>fourfold vs controls) included DDB1, CUL4A, IKZF1, KPNA2, LTF, PFKL, PRKAR2A, RANGAP1, and SHMT2. After lenalidomide treatment, the abundance of 46 CRBN binding proteins decreased. We focused attention on 2 of these-IKZF1 and IKZF3. IZKF expression is similar across all MM stages or subtypes; however, IKZF1 is substantially lower in 3 of 5 IMiD-resistant MM cell lines. The cell line (FR4) with the lowest IKZF1 levels also harbors a damaging mutation and a translocation that upregulates IRF4, an IKZF target. Clinical relevance of CRBN-binding proteins was demonstrated in 44 refractory MM patients treated with pomalidomide and dexamethasone therapy in whom low IKZF1 gene expression predicted lack of response (0/11 responses in the lowest expression quartile). CRBN, IKZF1, and KPNA2 levels also correlate with significant differences in overall survival. Our study identifies CRBN-binding proteins and demonstrates that in addition to CRBN, IKZF1, and KPNA2, expression can predict survival outcomes.

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