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Alyssa Rodriguez

University of San Diego

Brandt Eichman lab

DNA damage can cause lasting effects on genome stability if not properly corrected. One specific type of damage, DNA interstrand crosslinks (ICLs), create a covalent bridge between the nitrogenous bases of duplex DNA that halts transcription and replication as the DNA strands cannot be physically separated. However, the base excision repair pathway utilizes glycosylase enzymes to first recognize and cleave the modified base. DNA repair protein endonuclease VIII-like 3 (NEIL3) glycosylase was recently shown to unhook ICLs but very little is known about the unhooking mechanism. My research will focus  on understanding the repair mechanism of ICLs by NEIL3 both biochemically and via structural biology techniques.