Human RecQ helicases that share homology with E. coli RecQ helicase play critical roles in diverse biological activities such as DNA replication, transcription, recombination and repair. Mutations in three of the five human RecQ helicases (RecQ1, WRN, BLM, RecQL4 and RecQ5) result in autosomal recessive syndromes characterized by accelerated aging symptoms and cancer incidence. Mutational inactivation of Werner (WRN) and Bloom (BLM) genes results in Werner syndrome (WS) and Bloom syndrome (BS) respectively. However, mutations in RecQL4 result in three human disorders: (I) Rothmund-Thomson syndrome (RTS), (II) RAPADILINO and (III) Baller-Gerold syndrome (BGS). Cells from WS, BS and RTS are characterized by a unique chromosomal anomaly indicating that each of the RecQ helicases performs specialized function(s) in a non-redundant manner. Elucidating the biological functions of RecQ helicases will enable us to understand not only the aging process but also to determine the cause for age-associated human diseases. Recent biochemical and molecular studies have given new insights into the multifaceted roles of RecQL4 that range from genomic stability to carcinogenesis and beyond. This review summarizes some of the existing and emerging knowledge on diverse biological functions of RecQL4 and its significance as a potential molecular target for cancer therapy.
Cancer Letters – Elsevier
Published: Jan 28, 2018
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