The March issue of Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology presents a web focus on genome instability. The integrity of the genome is crucial for tumour suppression and for the propagation of genomic information to subsequent generations. DNA damage can result from cellular metabolism, exogenous genotoxic agents or routine errors in DNA replication and recombination. To combat these attacks and maintain genome integrity, cells have evolved a response system that induces cell cycle arrest, allowing sufficient time for DNA repair by specialized proteins. The DNA damage response system activates the appropriate DNA repair pathway or, in the case of irreparable damage, induces apoptosis. The special focus contains research highlights, review articles, a journal club and a NPG library of related articles. There is also a brief editors’ summary of the contents.
Accompanying the same issue of Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology is a Poster, by Eric J. Bennett, Mathew E. Sowa and J. Wade Harper, which illustrates the different deubiquitinating enzyme (DUB) families and highlights the cellular pathways in which some DUB-associated complexes act. Download a copy here.