Apr 9, 2016

Nucleosome fragility is associated with future transcriptional response to developmental cues and stress in C. elegans

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Tess E Jeffers, Jason D Lieb


Nucleosomes have structural and regulatory functions in all eukaryotic DNA-templated processes. The position of nucleosomes on DNA and the stability of the underlying histone-DNA interactions affect the access of regulatory proteins to DNA. Both stability and position are regulated through DNA sequence, histone post-translational modifications, histone variants, chromatin remodelers, and transcription factors. Here, we explored the functional implications of nucleosome properties on gene expression and development in C. elegans embryos. We performed a time-course of micrococcal nuclease (MNase) digestion, and measured the relative sensitivity or resistance of nucleosomes throughout the genome. Fragile nucleosomes were defined by nucleosomal DNA fragments recoverable preferentially in early MNase-digestion time points. We found fragile nucleosomes at locations where we expected to find destabilized nucleosomes, like transcription factor binding sites where nucleosomes compete with DNA-binding factors. Contrary to our expectation, the presence of fragile nucleosomes in gene promoters was anti-correlated with transcriptional activity. Instead, genes with fragile nucleosomes in their promoters tended to be expressed in a context-sp...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Calcinus elegans
Cyartonema elegans
Coleonyx elegans
Immune System
Biological Adaptation to Stress
Positioning Attribute
Histone antigen
Micrococcal Nuclease

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