Chromatin

Chromatin is a flexibly joined chain of nucleosomes that exists inside the nucleus of eukaryotic cells and has been described as a 'bead on a string'. Chromatin organization strengthens DNA for mechanically stressful processes like mitosis, helps protect DNA from damage and is important in the control of gene expression and DNA replication.

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Latest Research and Reviews

  • Research | | open

    The Mediator complex regulates transcription by connecting enhancers to promoters. Here, the authors purify Mediator from neural stem cells (NSCs), identify 75 novel protein-protein interaction partners and characterize the Mediator-interacting network that regulates transcription and establishes NSC identity.

    • Marti Quevedo
    • , Lize Meert
    • , Mike R. Dekker
    • , Dick H. W. Dekkers
    • , Johannes H. Brandsma
    • , Debbie L. C. van den Berg
    • , Zeliha Ozgür
    • , Wilfred F. J. van IJcken
    • , Jeroen Demmers
    • , Maarten Fornerod
    •  & Raymond A. Poot
  • Research | | open

    Chromatin is folded into Topologically Associating domains (TADs), with the organization and folding hierarchy of the TADs being highly dynamic. Here the authors develop a parsimonious randomly cross-linked (RCL) polymer model that maps high frequency encounters present in Hi-C data within and between TADs and reconstruct TADs across cell differentiation, revealing local chromatin re-organization.

    • O. Shukron
    • , V. Piras
    • , D. Noordermeer
    •  & D. Holcman
  • Research | | open

    Substitution of lysine 27 with methionine in histone H3.3 (H3.3K27M) is a driver mutation of pediatric high-grade gliomas. Here the authors show that H3.3K27M-mediated alterations in H3K27me3 distribution result in ectopic DNA replication and cell cycle progression of germ cells in Caenorhabditis elegans, through JNK pathway misregulation.

    • Kamila Delaney
    • , Maude Strobino
    • , Joanna M. Wenda
    • , Andrzej Pankowski
    •  & Florian A. Steiner
  • Research | | open

    Gene expression dysregulation domains (GEDDs) have been reported in Down syndrome (DS) cells, where changes in gene expression are clustered. Here the authors find that, while GEDDs are present in DS cells and in the Dp1Tyb mouse model of DS, GEDDs do not depend on the DS genotype and occur whenever gene expression changes, suggesting they result from the clustering of co-regulated genes as a function of mammalian genome organisation.

    • Helena Ahlfors
    • , Nneka Anyanwu
    • , Edvinas Pakanavicius
    • , Natalia Dinischiotu
    • , Eva Lana-Elola
    • , Sheona Watson-Scales
    • , Justin Tosh
    • , Frances Wiseman
    • , James Briscoe
    • , Karen Page
    • , Elizabeth M. C. Fisher
    •  & Victor L. J. Tybulewicz
  • Research |

    Attractions between heterochromatic regions are essential for phase separation of the active and inactive genome in inverted and conventional nuclei, whereas chromatin–lamina interactions are necessary to build the conventional genomic architecture from these segregated phases.

    • Martin Falk
    • , Yana Feodorova
    • , Natalia Naumova
    • , Maxim Imakaev
    • , Bryan R. Lajoie
    • , Heinrich Leonhardt
    • , Boris Joffe
    • , Job Dekker
    • , Geoffrey Fudenberg
    • , Irina Solovei
    •  & Leonid A. Mirny
    Nature, 1-5

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    The advent of PROTACs that degrade the entire protein target rather than simply inhibiting it bring druggable yet apparently non-functional binding sites into play for medicinal chemists to do their work.

    • Dafydd Owen
  • News and Views |

    Centromere identity must be maintained through multiple generations. A new study reveals a Constitutive Centromere-Associated Network (CCAN)-dependent retention of CENP-A, a key epigenetic mark for centromeres, in centromeres during DNA replication and a replication-dependent error correction to eliminate ectopic CENP-A in chromosome arms.

    • Masatoshi Hara
    •  & Tatsuo Fukagawa
    Nature Cell Biology 21, 669-671
  • News and Views |

    Epigenetic memory of silent chromatin often requires robust feedback loops between factors processing small non-coding RNAs and enzymes involved in heterochromatin assembly. A study published in Molecular Cell now demonstrates that these feedback loops can persist in a phenotypically neutral state even when gene expression is reactivated, and that they maintain the potential to reinstall heterochromatin in later generations when conditions change.

    • Matías Capella
    •  & Sigurd Braun