By: Asal Fotouhi

Title: The role of MTH1 in ultraviolet radiation-induced mutagenesis


Ultraviolet radiation (UVR) is known to be highly mutagenic. What types of DNA lesions that are induced by different UVR wavelengths are still a matter of debate. UVR induces mutagenesis mostly by the formation of photoproducts and the induction of reactive oxygen species (ROS). ROS can give rise to mutations via oxidation of nucleotides in the DNA or the nucleotide pool. Oxidized nucleotides in the nucleotide pool can thereby be incorporated into the DNA during replication and ultimately give rise to mutations. MTH1 however, dephosphorylates oxidized nucleotides in the nucleotide pool, in particular 8-oxo-dGTP and 2-OH-dATP, and inhibits their incorporation into the DNA.The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of MTH1 in mutagenesis and cytogenetic damage induced by UVR in a human lymphoblastoid TK6 cell line. The clonogenic survival, mutant frequency and micronucleus frequency were measured following exposure to UVA, UVB and UVC in MTH1-knockdown and wild-type TK6 cells. As a biomarker
for oxidative damage the level of intracellular and extracellular 8-oxo-dG was measured in TK6 cells exposed to UVA. The mutational spectra of UVA-induced mutations at the thymidine kinase gene in MTH1-knockdown and wild-type TK6 cells were investigated.The results show that MTH1 protects against UVA and UVB mutagenesis significantly. MTH1, however, has been shown to offer no protection against UVR-induced cytogenetic damage and is therefore suggested to mainly inhibit mutagenesis. The mutational spectra show that GC>AT and AT>GC transitions are the
dominant mutation types in cells exposed to UVA.In conclusion, MTH1 protects TK6 cells against mutagenesis induced by longer wavelengths of UVR. This indicates that the nucleotide pool is a significant target in mutagenesis for longer wavelengths of UVR. The type of mutations induced by UVA, GC>AT and AT>GC, can be formed by the incorporation of 2-OH-dATP from nucleotide pool into the DNA. UVA is therefore suggested to induce mutations by induction of oxidized nucleotides such as 2-OH-dATP.