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Journal of Nucleic Acids
Volume 2010 (2010), Article ID 260512, 16 pages
Review Article

DNA Mismatch Repair in Eukaryotes and Bacteria

RIKEN SPring-8 Center, Harima Institute, 1-1-1 Kouto, Sayo-cho, Sayo-gun, Hyogo 679-5148, Japan

Received 14 May 2010; Accepted 24 June 2010

Academic Editor: Shigenori Iwai

Copyright © 2010 Kenji Fukui. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


DNA mismatch repair (MMR) corrects mismatched base pairs mainly caused by DNA replication errors. The fundamental mechanisms and proteins involved in the early reactions of MMR are highly conserved in almost all organisms ranging from bacteria to human. The significance of this repair system is also indicated by the fact that defects in MMR cause human hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancers as well as sporadic tumors. To date, 2 types of MMRs are known: the human type and Escherichia coli type. The basic features of the former system are expected to be universal among the vast majority of organisms including most bacteria. Here, I review the molecular mechanisms of eukaryotic and bacterial MMR, emphasizing on the similarities between them.