Charting a DNA repair roadmap for immunoglobulin class switch recombination


  • T. Saha
  • D. Sundaravinayagam
  • M. Di Virgilio


  • Trends in Biochemical Sciences


  • Trends Biochem Sci 46 (3): 184-199


  • Immunoglobulin (Ig) class switch recombination (CSR) is the process occurring in mature B cells that diversifies the effector component of antibody responses. CSR is initiated by the activity of the B cell-specific enzyme activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID), which leads to the formation of programmed DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) at the Ig heavy chain (Igh) locus. Mature B cells use a multilayered and complex regulatory framework to ensure that AID-induced DNA breaks are channeled into productive repair reactions leading to CSR, and to avoid aberrant repair events causing lymphomagenic chromosomal translocations. Here, we review the DNA repair pathways acting on AID-induced DSBs and their functional interplay, with a particular focus on the latest developments in their molecular composition and mechanistic regulation.