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New Insights into Replication Clamp Unloading

Ulrich, Helle D.
Journal of Molecular Biology 2013 v.425 pp. 4727-4732
DNA, chromatin, genome, humans, proliferating cell nuclear antigen, yeasts
The sliding clamp protein proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) is situated at the core of the eukaryotic replisome, where it acts as an interaction scaffold for numerous replication and repair factors and coordinates DNA transactions ranging from Okazaki fragment maturation to chromatin assembly and mismatch repair. PCNA is loaded onto DNA by a dedicated complex, the replication factor C, whose mechanism has been studied in detail. Until recently, however, it was unclear how PCNA is removed from DNA upon completion of DNA synthesis. Two complementary studies now present data strongly implicating the replication factor C-like complex, Elg1/ATAD5-RLC, in the unloading of PCNA during replication in yeast and human cells. They indicate that an appropriate control over PCNA's residence on the chromatin is important for maintaining genome stability. At the same time, they suggest that the interaction of Elg1/ATAD5 with SUMO, which was also reported to contribute to its role in genome maintenance, affects aspects of its function distinct from its unloading activity.