• Roles for the methyltransferase SETD8 in DNA damage repair.

      Xu, Libo; Zhang, Ling; Sun, Jicheng; Hu, Xindan; Kalvakolanu, Dhan V; Ren, Hui; Guo, Baofeng (Springer Nature, 2022-03-04)
      Epigenetic posttranslational modifications are critical for fine-tuning gene expression in various biological processes. SETD8 is so far the only known lysyl methyltransferase in mammalian cells to produce mono-methylation of histone H4 at lysine 20 (H4K20me1), a prerequisite for di- and tri-methylation. Importantly, SETD8 is related to a number of cellular activities, impinging upon tissue development, senescence and tumorigenesis. The double-strand breaks (DSBs) are cytotoxic DNA damages with deleterious consequences, such as genomic instability and cancer origin, if unrepaired. The homology-directed repair and canonical nonhomologous end-joining are two most prominent DSB repair pathways evolved to eliminate such aberrations. Emerging evidence implies that SETD8 and its corresponding H4K20 methylation are relevant to establishment of DSB repair pathway choice. Understanding how SETD8 functions in DSB repair pathway choice will shed light on the molecular basis of SETD8-deficiency related disorders and will be valuable for the development of new treatments. In this review, we discuss the progress made to date in roles for the lysine mono-methyltransferase SETD8 in DNA damage repair and its therapeutic relevance, in particular illuminating its involvement in establishment of DSB repair pathway choice, which is crucial for the timely elimination of DSBs.