Involved in DNA damage recognition. Binds DNA containing O(6)-methylguanine and larger O(6)-alkylguanine adducts. The DNA is bent, the damaged base is rotated out of the DNA duplex into a hydrophobic binding pocket (nucleotide flipping), with Arg-39 donating a hydrogen bond to the orphaned cytosine to stabilize the extrahelical DNA conformation. This structural change in DNA presents the lesion to the nucleotide excision repair (NER) pathway .
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