DNA repair BER pathway inhibition increases cell death caused by oxidative DNA damage in Trypanosoma cruzi

Programa de Biología Celular y Molecular, Instituto de Ciencias Biomédicas, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de Chile, Santiago, Chile.
Journal of Cellular Biochemistry (Impact Factor: 3.26). 08/2011; 112(8):2189-99. DOI: 10.1002/jcb.23138
Source: PubMed


Trypanosoma cruzi, a parasitic protozoan, is the etiological agent of Chagas disease, an endemic and neglected pathology in Latin America. It presents a life cycle that involves a hematophagous insect and man as well as domestic and wild mammals. The parasitic infection is not eliminated by the immune system of mammals; thus, the vertebrate host serves as a parasite reservoir. Additionally, chronic processes leading to dysfunction of the cardiac and digestive systems are observed. To establish a chronic infection some parasites should resist the oxidative damage to its DNA exerted by oxygen and nitrogen free radicals (ROS/RNS) generated in host cells. Till date there are no reports directly showing oxidative DNA damage and repair in T. cruzi. We establish that ROS/RNS generate nuclear and kinetoplastid DNA damage in T. cruzi that may be partially repaired by the parasite. Furthermore, we determined that both oxidative agents diminish T. cruzi cell viability. This effect is significantly augmented in parasites subsequently incubated with methoxyamine, a DNA base excision repair (BER) pathway inhibitor, strongly suggesting that the maintenance of T. cruzi viability is a consequence of DNA repair mechanisms.

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    • "The QPCR results obtained herein are in agreement with a recently published article that investigated T. cruzi BER pathway [53]. In that work, the levels of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA damage generated by H2O2 were similar to the DNA damage profile verified by our group. "
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    ABSTRACT: The oxidative lesion 8-oxoguanine (8-oxoG) is removed during base excision repair by the 8-oxoguanine DNA glycosylase 1 (Ogg1). This lesion can erroneously pair with adenine, and the excision of this damaged base by Ogg1 enables the insertion of a guanine and prevents DNA mutation. In this report, we identified and characterized Ogg1 from the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma cruzi (TcOgg1), the causative agent of Chagas disease. Like most living organisms, T. cruzi is susceptible to oxidative stress, hence DNA repair is essential for its survival and improvement of infection. We verified that the TcOGG1 gene encodes an 8-oxoG DNA glycosylase by complementing an Ogg1-defective Saccharomyces cerevisiae strain. Heterologous expression of TcOGG1 reestablished the mutation frequency of the yeast mutant ogg1(-/-) (CD138) to wild type levels. We also demonstrate that the overexpression of TcOGG1 increases T. cruzi sensitivity to hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)). Analysis of DNA lesions using quantitative PCR suggests that the increased susceptibility to H(2)O(2) of TcOGG1-overexpressor could be a consequence of uncoupled BER in abasic sites and/or strand breaks generated after TcOgg1 removes 8-oxoG, which are not rapidly repaired by the subsequent BER enzymes. This hypothesis is supported by the observation that TcOGG1-overexpressors have reduced levels of 8-oxoG both in the nucleus and in the parasite mitochondrion. The localization of TcOgg1 was examined in parasite transfected with a TcOgg1-GFP fusion, which confirmed that this enzyme is in both organelles. Taken together, our data indicate that T. cruzi has a functional Ogg1 ortholog that participates in nuclear and mitochondrial BER.
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