S-nitrosation on zinc finger motif of PARP-1 as a mechanism of DNA repair inhibition by arsenite. Academic Article uri icon


  • Arsenic, a widely distributed carcinogen, is known to significantly amplify the impact of other carcinogens through inhibition of DNA repair. Our recent work suggests that reactive oxygen/nitrogen species (ROS/RNS) induced by arsenite (AsIII) play an important role in the inhibition of the DNA repair protein Poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase 1 (PARP-1). AsIII-induced ROS lead to oxidation of cysteine residues within the PARP-1 zinc finger DNA binding domain. However, the mechanism underlying RNS-mediated PARP inhibition by arsenic remains unknown. In this work, we demonstrate that AsIII treatment of normal human keratinocyte (HEKn) cells induced S-nitrosation on cysteine residues of PARP-1 protein, in a similar manner to a nitric oxide donor. S-nitrosation of PARP-1 could be reduced by 1400W (inducible nitric oxide synthase inhibitor) or c-PTIO (a nitric oxide scavenger). Furthermore, AsIII treatment of HEKn cells leads to zinc loss and inhibition of PARP-1 enzymatic activity. AsIII and 1400W/c-PTIO co-treatment demonstrate that these effects occur in an iNOS- and NO-dependent manner. Importantly, we confirmed S-nitrosation on the zinc finger DNA binding domain of PARP-1 protein. Taken together, AsIII induces S-nitrosation on PARP-1 zinc finger DNA binding domain by generating NO through iNOS activation, leading to zinc loss and inhibition of PARP-1 activity, thereby increasing retention of damaged DNA. These findings identify S-nitrosation as an important component of the molecular mechanism underlying AsIII inhibition of DNA repair, which may benefit the development of preventive and intervention strategies against AsIII co-carcinogenesis.

publication date

  • December 2016