Selective removal of promoter nucleosomes by the RSC chromatin-remodeling complex


Purified chromatin rings, excised from the PHO5 locus of Saccharomyces cerevisiae in transcriptionally repressed and activated states, were remodeled with RSC and ATP. Nucleosomes were translocated, and those originating on the promoter of repressed rings were removed, whereas those originating on the open reading frame (ORF) were retained. Treatment of the repressed rings with histone deacetylase diminished the removal of promoter nucleosomes. These findings point to a principle of promoter chromatin remodeling for transcription, namely that promoter specificity resides primarily in the nucleosomes rather than in the remodeling complex that acts upon them.

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Figure 1: Effect of RSC and ATP on the accessibility of gene rings to digestion by BstEII and ClaI.
Figure 2: Effect of RSC and ATP on the accessibility of PHO5 rings to restriction endonuclease digestion.
Figure 3: Effect of RSC and ATP on topoisomer distributions of PHO5 rings.
Figure 4: Nucleosome loss determined by limit nuclease digestion.


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This research was supported by US National Institutes of Health grant GM36659 (R.D.K).

Author information




Y.L. designed, conducted and interpreted experiments and wrote the paper. J.G. and H.B. participated in the isolation of chromatin rings and in limit nuclease digestion experiments. B.M.-D. isolated chromatin rings and RSC. R.D.K. designed and interpreted experiments and wrote the paper.

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Correspondence to Yahli Lorch.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Lorch, Y., Griesenbeck, J., Boeger, H. et al. Selective removal of promoter nucleosomes by the RSC chromatin-remodeling complex. Nat Struct Mol Biol 18, 881–885 (2011).

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