Human TopBP1 plays a critical role in the control of DNA replication checkpoint. In this study, we report a specific interaction between TopBP1 and BACH1/FANCJ, a DNA helicase involved in the repair of DNA crosslinks. The TopBP1/BACH1 interaction is mediated by the very C-terminal tandem BRCT domains of TopBP1 and S phase-specific phosphorylation of BACH1 at Thr 1133 site. Interestingly, we demonstrate that depletion of TopBP1 or BACH1 attenuates the loading of RPA on chromatin. Moreover, both TopBP1 and BACH1 are required for ATR-dependent phosphorylation events in response to replication stress. Taken together, our data suggest that BACH1 has an unexpected early role in replication checkpoint control. A specific interaction between TopBP1 and BACH1 is likely to be required for the extension of single-stranded DNA regions and RPA loading following replication stress, which is a prerequisite for the subsequent activation of replication checkpoint.
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