Role of MUTYH in human cancer

Filomena Mazzei, Alessandra Viel, Margherita Bignami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


MUTYH, a human ortholog of MutY, is a post-replicative DNA glycosylase, highly conserved throughout evolution, involved in the correction of mismatches resulting from a faulty replication of the oxidized base 8-hydroxyguanine (8-oxodG). In particular removal of adenine from A:8-oxodG mispairs by MUTYH activity is followed by error-free base excision repair (BER) events, leading to the formation of C:8-oxodG base pairs. These are the substrate of another BER enzyme, the OGG1 DNA glycosylase, which then removes 8-oxodG from DNA. Thus the combined action of OGG1 and MUTYH prevents oxidative damage-induced mutations, i.e. GC-. >. TA transversions. Germline mutations in MUTYH are associated with a recessively heritable colorectal polyposis, now referred to as MUTYH-associated polyposis (MAP). Here we will review the phenotype(s) associated with MUTYH inactivation from bacteria to mammals, the structure of the MUTYH protein, the molecular mechanisms of its enzymatic activity and the functional characterization of MUTYH variants. The relevance of these results will be discussed to define the role of specific human mutations in colorectal cancer risk together with the possible role of MUTYH inactivation in sporadic cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-43
Number of pages11
JournalMutation Research - Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2013


  • 8-Hydroxyguanine
  • Colorectal cancer
  • DNA repair
  • MAP
  • Mutagenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Role of MUTYH in human cancer'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this