Yeast SWI/SNF is a multisubunit, 1.14-MDa ATP-dependent chromatin-remodeling enzyme required for transcription of a subset of inducible genes. Biochemical studies have demonstrated that SWI/SNF uses the energy from ATP hydrolysis to generate superhelical torsion, mobilize mononucleosomes, enhance the accessibility of nucleosomal DNA and remove H2A-H2B dimers from mononucleosomes. Here we describe the ATP-dependent activities of a SWI/SNF sub complex that is composed of only three subunits, Swi2p, Arp7p and Arp9p. Whereas this sub complex is fully functional in most remodeling assays, Swi2p–Arp7p–Arp9p is defective for ATP-dependent removal of H2A-H2B dimers. We identify the acidic N terminus of the Swi3p subunit as a novel H2A-H2B–binding domain required for ATP-dependent dimer loss. Our data indicate that H2A-H2B dimer loss is not an obligatory consequence of ATP-dependent DNA translocation, and furthermore they suggest that SWI/SNF is composed of at least four interdependent modules.
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We thank J. Reese (Penn State University) for SWI/SNF antibodies used for western blotting, and T. Owen-Hughes (Dundee) for the gift of T4 endonuclease VII. This work was supported by a grant from the US National Institutes of Health to C.L.P.
The authors declare no competing financial interests.
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Yang, X., Zaurin, R., Beato, M. et al. Swi3p controls SWI/SNF assembly and ATP-dependent H2A-H2B displacement. Nat Struct Mol Biol 14, 540–547 (2007) doi:10.1038/nsmb1238
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