How does the packaging of DNA in nucleosomes and higher order chromatin affect damage sensitivity and repair?
In terms of damage sensitivity, the packaging of DNA into nucleosomes and higher order chromatin can have both costs and benefits. On one hand, densely packed chromatin may be more protected from damage. On the other, DNA in nucleosomes is harder for repair proteins to access. Added complexity comes from the fact that specific histone modifications may play a role in the recruitment of DNA repair proteins and in the perpetuation and amplification of a DNA damage-response signal.