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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Transgenic expression of human MGMT blocks the hypersensitivity of PMS2-deficient mice to low dose MNU thymic lymphomagenesis.

Mice deficient in the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) gene, PMS2, develop spontaneous thymic lymphomas and sarcomas. We have previously shown that PMS2(-/-) mice were hypersensitive to a single i.p. injection of 50 mg/kg of N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU) for thymic lymphoma induction. We postulated that MNU sensitivity was due to formation of O(6)-methylguanine (O(6)-mG), which, if unrepaired by O(6)-alkylguanine DNA alkyltransferase (AGT), leads to apoptosis in MMR competent cells and O(6)-mG:T mismatches in MMR deficient cells. Tumor induction is less in MMR(+/+) mice because cells with residual DNA adducts die, whereas mutagenized cells survive in MMR(-/-) mice. Overexpression of AGT (encoded by the methylguanine DNA methyltransferase-MGMT-gene) is known to block MNU induced tumorigenesis in mice with functional MMR. To further determine the sensitivity of PMS2(-/-) mice to MNU and the protective effect of hAGT overexpression, a low dose of MNU (25 mg/kg) was studied in PMS2(-/-) mice and PMS2(-/-)/hMGMT(+) mice. No thymic lymphomas were found in MNU-treated PMS2(+/+) and PMS2(+/-) mice. At 1 year, 46% of the MNU-treated PMS2(-/-) mice developed thymic lymphoma, compared with an incidence of 25% in both untreated PMS2(-/-) mice and MNU treated PMS2(-/-)/hMGMT(+) mice. In addition, a significantly shorter latency in the onset of thymic lymphomas was seen in MNU-treated PMS2(-/-) mice. K-ras mutations were detected almost equally in the thymic lymphomas induced by MNU in both PMS2(-/-) and PMS2(-/-)/hMGMT(+) mice, but not in the spontaneous lymphomas. These data suggest that PMS(-/-) mice are hypersensitive to MNU, that there are different pathways responsible for spontaneous and MNU induced thymic lymphomas in PMS2(-/-) mice, and that overexpression of hMGMT protects the mice by blocking non-K-ras pathways.[1]


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