SMCHD1 promotes ATM-dependent DNA damage signaling and repair of uncapped telomeresMore about Open Access at the Crick
Authors listAleksandra Vančevska Wareed Ahmed Verena Pfeiffer Marianna Feretzaki Simon Boulton Joachim Lingner
Structural maintenance of chromosomes flexible hinge domain-containing protein 1 (SMCHD1) has been implicated in X-chromosome inactivation, imprinting, and DNA damage repair, and mutations in SMCHD1 can cause facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy. More recently, SMCHD1 has also been identified as a component of telomeric chromatin. Here, we report that SMCHD1 is required for DNA damage signaling and non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) at unprotected telomeres. Co-depletion of SMCHD1 and the shelterin subunit TRF2 reduced telomeric 3'-overhang removal in time-course experiments, as well as the number of chromosome end fusions. SMCHD1-deficient cells displayed reduced ATM S1981 phosphorylation and diminished formation of γH2AX foci and of 53BP1-containing telomere dysfunction-induced foci (TIFs), indicating defects in DNA damage checkpoint signaling. Removal of TPP1 and subsequent activation of ATR signaling rescued telomere fusion events in TRF2-depleted SMCHD1 knockout cells. Together, these data indicate that SMCHD1 depletion reduces telomere fusions in TRF2-depleted cells due to defects in ATM-dependent checkpoint signaling and that SMCHD1 mediates DNA damage response activation upstream of ATM phosphorylation at uncapped telomeres.
Journal The EMBO Journal