Human RECQ helicases: roles in DNA metabolism, mutagenesis and cancer biology.

Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-7705, USA.
Seminars in Cancer Biology (Impact Factor: 7.44). 10/2010; 20(5):329-39. DOI: 10.1016/j.semcancer.2010.10.002
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Helicases use the energy of ATP hydrolysis to separate double-stranded nucleic acids to facilitate essential processes such as replication, recombination, transcription and repair. This article focuses on the human RECQ helicase gene and protein family. Loss of function of three different members has been shown to cause Bloom syndrome (BS), Werner syndrome (WS) and Rothmund-Thomson syndrome (RTS). This article outlines clinical and cellular features of these cancer predisposition syndromes, and discusses their pathogenesis in light of our understanding of RECQ helicase biochemical activities and in vivo functions. I also discuss the emerging role for RECQ helicases as predictors of disease risk and the response to therapy.

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    ABSTRACT: Bloom syndrome (BS) is an inherited genomic instability disorder caused by disruption of the BLM helicase and confers an extreme cancer predisposition. Here we report on a girl with BS who developed acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) at age nine, and treatment-related acute myeloid leukaemia (t-AML) aged 12. She was compound heterozygous for the novel BLM frameshift deletion c.1624delG and the previously described c.3415C>T nonsense mutation. Two haematological malignancies in a child with BS imply a fundamental role for BLM for normal haematopoiesis, in particular in the presence of genotoxic stress.
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