USP13 regulates the RAP80-BRCA1 complex dependent DNA damage response

Yunhui Li, Kuntian Luo, Yujiao Yin, Chenming Wu, Min Deng, Lei Li, Yuping Chen, Somaira Nowsheen, Zhenkun Lou, Jian Yuan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


BRCA1 regulates multiple cellular pathways that maintain genomic stability including cell cycle checkpoints, DNA repair, protein ubiquitination, chromatin remodelling, transcriptional regulation and apoptosis. Receptor-Associated protein 80 (RAP80) helps recruit BRCA1 to double-strand breaks (DSBs) through the scaffold protein CCDC98 (Abraxas) and facilitates DNA damage response (DDR). However, the regulation of RAP80-BRCA1 complex is still unclear. Here we report that a deubiquitinase, USP13, regulates DDR by targeting RAP80. Mechanistically, USP13 is phosphorylated by ATM following DNA damage which, in turn, facilitates its DSB localization. USP13, in turn, deubiquitinates RAP80 and promotes RAP80 recruitment and proper DDR. Depleting or inhibiting USP13 sensitizes ovarian cancer cells to cisplatin and PARP inhibitor (olaparib) while overexpression of USP13 renders ovarian cancer cells resistant to chemotherapy. Overall, we identify USP13 as a regulator of DNA repair and reveal a model in which a phosphorylation-deubiquitination axis dynamically regulates RAP80-BRCA1 complex foci formation and function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number15752
JournalNature communications
StatePublished - Jun 1 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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