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Dr Michael Carty

Senior Lecturer
Head of Discipline of Biochemistry

Research interests

  • UV radiation- and cisplatin-induced DNA damage response pathways in human cells
  • Mechanistic investigation of the role of DNA polymerase eta in translesion synthesis
  • Characterisation of the effects of novel anti-cancer agents

Research overview

Our main research interest is the molecular basis of the response of human cells to DNA damaging agents. This includes investigation of DNA damage response pathways in primary normal human melanocytes exposed to long-wavelength UVA light, as well as mechanistic studies of the response to human cells to DNA damage-induced replication arrest. We focus on the role of the human POLH gene product DNA polymerase eta in translesion synthesis, and on the activation of downstream damage signalling pathways, in particular PIK kinase-mediated phosphorylation of replication protein A (RPA). The response of human mesenchymal stem cells to platinum-based chemotherapeutic agents or ionising radiation has been investigated in collaboration with the Regenerative Medicine Institute at NUI, Galway.

Mechanistic studies of the response to human cells to DNA damage-induced replication arrest focus on the role of the human POLH gene product DNA polymerase eta in translesion synthesis, and on the activation of downstream damage signalling pathways, in particular PIK kinase-mediated phosphorylation of replication protein A (RPA).

We have an ongoing collaboration with Dr. F. Aldabbagh, School of Chemistry, NUI, Galway to characterise the effects of novel derivatives of the anti-cancer drug mitomycin C on normal and cancer cell lines.

Selected publications

  • Sokol AM, Cruet-Hennequart S, Pasero P, Carty MP, DNA polymerase eta modulates replication fork progression and DNA damage responses in platinum-treated human cells. Sci Rep 3: 3277 (2013)
  • Cruet-Hennequart S, Prendergast AM, Shaw G, Barry FP, Carty MP, Doxorubicin induces the DNA damage response in cultured human mesenchymal stem cells. Int J Hematol 96: 649-656 (2012)
  • Fagan V, Bonham S, Carty MP, Saenz-Mendez P, Eriksson LA, Aldabbagh F, COMPARE analysis of the toxicity of an iminoquinone derivative of the imidazo[5,4-f]benzimidazoles with NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1) activity and computational docking of quinones as NQO1 substrates. Bioorg Med Chem 20: 3223-3232 (2012)