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Methods for studying DNA repair and protein modification are featured in CSH Protocols


COLD SPRING HARBOR, N.Y. (Mon., Jan. 5, 2009) – This month's issue of Cold Spring Harbor Protocols (www.cshprotocols.org/TOCs/toc1_09.dtl) features two articles detailing experimental methods for the analysis of molecular processes involved in DNA repair and post-translational modification of proteins.

Homologous recombination is an important mechanism for the repair of damaged chromosomes. When this occurs, a Displacement Loop, or "D-loop," is formed as the two strands of the DNA molecule are separated and held apart by a third strand of DNA. Patrick Sung's laboratory at Yale University (info.med.yale.edu/mbb/sung/) has detailed a method for generating these structures in their article, Assay for Human Rad51-Mediated DNA Displacement Loop Formation. This reconstituted system provides researchers a biochemical means to dissect the mechanisms of the homologous recombination machinery. The protocol is freely accessible on the website for Cold Spring Harbor Protocols (http://www.cshprotocols.org/cgi/content/full/2009/1/pdb.prot5120).

Sumoylation involves the attachment of Small Ubiquitin-like Modifier or "SUMO" proteins to other proteins in a cell. Sumoylation modifies these target proteins and can affect a variety of activities, including stability, transport, and transcriptional regulation. James Manley's laboratory at Columbia University (www.columbia.edu/cu/biology/faculty/manley) provides In Vitro Sumoylation of Recombinant Proteins and Subsequent Purification for Use in Enzymatic Assays, a protocol for modifying proteins in this manner, allowing one to assess the impact of sumoylation. This method is freely accessible on the website for Cold Spring Harbor Protocols (http://www.cshprotocols.org/cgi/content/full/2009/1/pdb.prot5121).

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About Cold Spring Harbor Protocols:
Cold Spring Harbor Protocols (www.cshprotocols.org) is a monthly peer-reviewed journal of methods used in a wide range of biology laboratories. It is structured to be highly interactive, with each protocol cross-linked to related methods, descriptive information panels, and illustrative material to maximize the total information available to investigators. Each protocol is clearly presented and designed for easy use at the bench—complete with reagents, equipment, and recipe lists. Life science researchers can access the entire collection via institutional site licenses, and can add their suggestions and comments to further refine the techniques.

About Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press:
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press is an internationally renowned publisher of books, journals, and electronic media, located on Long Island, New York. Since 1933, it has furthered the advance and spread of scientific knowledge in all areas of genetics and molecular biology, including cancer biology, plant science, bioinformatics, and neurobiology. It is a division of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, an innovator in life science research and the education of scientists, students, and the public. For more information, visit www.cshlpress.com.


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