Inherited and sporadic defects in genes that encode proteins that participate in DNA repair give rise to genetic instability that can lead to malignant transformation or trigger cellular senescence or apoptosis. Inherited defects in DNA repair genes are the underlying cause of familial cancer syndromes and premature ageing syndromes. Sporadic defects in DNA repair genes are frequently found in tumors. For review, please refer to Tiwari and Wilson 2019.
We have so far annotated diseases of mismatch repair and diseases of base excision repair.
Defects in mammalian DNA mismatch repair (MMR) genes (MLH1, PMS2, MSH2, and MSH6) result in microsatellite instability (MSI) and reduced fidelity during replication and repair steps. Defective variants of MMR genes are associated with sporadic cancers with hypermutation phenotype as well as hereditary cancer syndromes such as Lynch syndrome (hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer) and constitutional mismatch repair deficiency syndrome (CMMRD). MSI is an important predictor of sensitivity to cancer immunotherapy. For review, please refer to Pena-Diaz and Rasmussen 2016, Sijmons and Hofstra 2016, Tabori et al. 2017, Baretti and Le 2018.
Germline mutations, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and somatic mutations in several genes involved in base excision repair (BER), a DNA repair pathway where a damaged DNA base is excised and replaced with a correct base, are involved in the development of cancer and several oxidative stress-related diseases. For review, please refer to Fu et al. 2012, Fletcher and Houlston 2010, Brenerman et al. 2014, Patrono et al. 2014, and D'Errico et al. 2017.