Many cancers harbor homologous recombination defects (HRDs). A HRD is a therapeutic target that is being successfully utilized in treatment of breast/ovarian cancer via synthetic lethality. However, canonical HRD caused by BRCAness mutations do not prevail in liver cancer. Here we report a subtype of HRD caused by the perturbation of a proteasome variant (CDW19S) in hepatitis B virus–bearing (HBV-bearing) cells. This amalgamate protein complex contained the 19S proteasome decorated with CRL4WDR70 ubiquitin ligase, and assembled at broken chromatin in a PSMD4Rpn10- and ATM-MDC1-RNF8–dependent manner. CDW19S promoted DNA end processing via segregated modules that promote nuclease activities of MRE11 and EXO1. Contrarily, a proteasomal component, ADRM1Rpn13, inhibited resection and was removed by CRL4WDR70-catalyzed ubiquitination upon commitment of extensive resection. HBx interfered with ADRM1Rpn13 degradation, leading to the imposition of ADRM1Rpn13-dependent resection barrier and consequent viral HRD subtype distinguishable from that caused by BRCA1 defect. Finally, we demonstrated that viral HRD in HBV-associated hepatocellular carcinoma can be exploited to restrict tumor progression. Our work clarifies the underlying mechanism of a virus-induced HRD subtype.
Ming Zeng, Zizhi Tang, Laifeng Ren, Haibin Wang, Xiaojun Wang, Wenyuan Zhu, Xiaobing Mao, Zeyang Li, Xianming Mo, Jun Chen, Junhong Han, Daochun Kong, Jianguo Ji, Antony M. Carr, Cong Liu