Anticancer research

Selenium protection from DNA damage involves a Ref1/p53/Brca1 protein complex.

PMID 16619485


Selenium, in the form of seleno-L-methionine (SeMet), induced Redox-factor-1 (Ref1) and p53 proteins in normal human and mouse fibroblasts. Ref1 and p53 are known to be associated with each other, resulting in enhanced sequence-specific DNA binding by p53 and transactivation of p53-regulated effector genes. SeMet preferentially induced the DNA repair branch of the p53 pathway, while apoptosis and cell cycle arrest were unaffected. Accordingly, pretreatment with SeMet protected normal fibroblasts from subsequent DNA damage. In the current study, Brca1 and Ref1 were shown to interact concurrently with p53 in targeting a SeMet-induced DNA repair response. Moreover, like p53 and Ref1, Brca1 was required for SeMet-mediated DNA damage protection, as brca1 -/- mouse fibroblasts were not protected from UV-radiation by SeMet treatment. These findings indicate that besides p53 and Ref1, Brca1 is required for selenium protection from DNA damage. The data are consistent with selective induction of the DNA repair branch of the p53 pathway by SeMet.