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

The Apollo 5' exonuclease functions together with TRF2 to protect telomeres from DNA repair.

A major issue in telomere research is to understand how the integrity of chromosome ends is preserved . The human telomeric protein TRF2 coordinates several pathways that prevent checkpoint activation and chromosome fusions. In this work, we identified hSNM1B, here named Apollo, as a novel TRF2-interacting factor. Interestingly, the N-terminal domain of Apollo is closely related to that of Artemis, a factor involved in V(D)J recombination and DNA repair. Both proteins belong to the beta-CASP metallo-beta-lactamase family of DNA caretaker proteins. Apollo appears preferentially localized at telomeres in a TRF2-dependent manner. Reduced levels of Apollo exacerbate the sensitivity of cells to TRF2 inhibition, resulting in severe growth defects and an increased number of telomere-induced DNA-damage foci and telomere fusions. Purified Apollo protein exhibits a 5'-to-3' DNA exonuclease activity. We conclude that Apollo is a novel component of the human telomeric complex and works together with TRF2 to protect chromosome termini from being recognized and processed as DNA damage. These findings unveil a previously undescribed telomere-protection mechanism involving a DNA 5'-to-3' exonuclease.[1]


  1. The Apollo 5' exonuclease functions together with TRF2 to protect telomeres from DNA repair. Lenain, C., Bauwens, S., Amiard, S., Brunori, M., Giraud-Panis, M.J., Gilson, E. Curr. Biol. (2006) [Pubmed]
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