New Mechanism for DNA Folding
Published:22 May2023    Source:Karolinska Institutet
A hitherto unknown mechanism for DNA folding is described in a study in Nature published by researchers. In humans and other eukaryotes, i.e., organisms whose cells contain a nucleus, there are three such protein complexes. Scientists have already revealed the mechanism of function for two of them. In the present study, the researchers investigated the third, the Smc5/6 complex, the function of which has remained mostly unknown.
These results reveal the Smc5/6 complex as a new regulator of DNA folding, which can tell us more about how chromosomes are organisedThe discovery is also medically relevant, since DNA folding is important for normal chromosome function and for avoiding chromosomal alterations that could lead to disease.
The next step of our research is to find out how the Smc5/6 complex's ability to make DNA loops affects their function in cells, which can increase our understanding of how Smc5/6 can function as a virus blocker, protect against cancer and contribute to fetal development. says Professor Björkegren, professor at the Department of Cell and Molecular Biology at Karolinska Institutet, who led the study together with Eugene Kim, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysics in Frankfurt am Main.