bims-histon Biomed News
on Histones
Issue of 2020‒06‒07
forty-nine papers selected by
Benjamin Weekley
University of Southern California


  1. Genes Dev. 2020 Jun 04.
    Kang H, Shokhirev MN, Xu Z, Chandran S, Dixon JR, Hetzer MW.
      During mitosis, transcription of genomic DNA is dramatically reduced, before it is reactivated during nuclear reformation in anaphase/telophase. Many aspects of the underlying principles that mediate transcriptional memory and reactivation in the daughter cells remain unclear. Here, we used ChIP-seq on synchronized cells at different stages after mitosis to generate genome-wide maps of histone modifications. Combined with EU-RNA-seq and Hi-C analyses, we found that during prometaphase, promoters, enhancers, and insulators retain H3K4me3 and H3K4me1, while losing H3K27ac. Enhancers globally retaining mitotic H3K4me1 or locally retaining mitotic H3K27ac are associated with cell type-specific genes and their transcription factors for rapid transcriptional activation. As cells exit mitosis, promoters regain H3K27ac, which correlates with transcriptional reactivation. Insulators also gain H3K27ac and CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) in anaphase/telophase. This increase of H3K27ac in anaphase/telophase is required for posttranscriptional activation and may play a role in the establishment of topologically associating domains (TADs). Together, our results suggest that the genome is reorganized in a sequential order, in which histone methylations occur first in prometaphase, histone acetylation, and CTCF in anaphase/telophase, transcription in cytokinesis, and long-range chromatin interactions in early G1. We thus provide insights into the histone modification landscape that allows faithful reestablishment of the transcriptional program and TADs during cell division.
    Keywords:  chromatin; mitosis; transcription
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1101/gad.335794.119
  2. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2020 ;8 293
    Shen C, Yan T, Tong T, Shi D, Ren L, Zhang Y, Zhang X, Cao Y, Yan Y, Ma Y, Zhu X, Tian X, Fang JY, Chen H, Ji L, Hong J, Xuan B.
      Background: Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition (EMT) is a major process in the initiation of tumor metastasis, where cancer cells lose sessile epithelial potential and gain mesenchymal phenotype. Large-scale cell identity shifts are often orchestrated on an epigenetic level and the interplay between epigenetic factors and EMT progression was still largely unknown. In this study, we tried to identify candidate epigenetic factors that involved in EMT progression.Methods: Colorectal cancer (CRC) cells were transfected with an arrayed shRNA library targeting 384 genes involved in epigenetic modification. Candidate genes were identified by real-time PCR. Western blot, RNA-seq and gene set enrichment analysis were conducted to confirm the suppressive role of ALKBH4 in EMT. The clinical relevance of ALKBH4 in CRC was investigated in two independent Renji Cohorts and a microarray dataset (GSE21510) from GEO database. In vitro transwell assay and in vivo metastatic tumor model were performed to explore the biological function of ALKBH4 in the metastasis of CRC. Co-IP (Co-Immunoprecipitation) and ChIP (Chromatin Immunoprecipitation) assays were employed to uncover the mechanism.
    Results: We screened for candidate epigenetic factors that affected EMT process and identified ALKBH4 as a candidate EMT suppressor gene, which was significantly downregulated in CRC patients. Decreased level of ALKBH4 was associated with metastasis and predicted poor prognosis of CRC patients. Follow-up functional experiments illustrated overexpression of ALKBH4 inhibited the invasion ability of CRC cells in vitro, as well as their metastatic capability in vivo. Mechanistically, CO-IP and ChIP assays indicated that ALKBH4 competitively bound WDR5 (a key component of histone methyltransferase complex) and decreased H3K4me3 histone modification on the target genes including MIR21.
    Conclusions: This study illustrated that ALKBH4 may function as a novel metastasis suppressor of CRC, and inhibits H3K4me3 modification through binding WDR5 during EMT.
    Keywords:  ALKBH4; CRC; EMT; epigenetic modification; metastasis
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3389/fcell.2020.00293
  3. Elife. 2020 Jun 05. pii: e57663. [Epub ahead of print]9
    Wang ZA, Millard CJ, Lin CL, Gurnett JE, Wu M, Lee K, Fairall L, Schwabe JWR, Cole PA.
      Histone acetylation regulates chromatin structure and gene expression and is removed by histone deacetylases (HDACs). HDACs are commonly found in various protein complexes to confer distinct cellular functions, but how the multi-subunit complexes influence deacetylase activities and site-selectivities in chromatin is poorly understood. Previously we reported the results of studies on the HDAC1 containing CoREST complex and acetylated nucleosome substrates which revealed a notable preference for deacetylation of histone H3 acetyl-Lys9 vs. acetyl-Lys14 (M. Wu et al, 2018). Here we analyze the enzymatic properties of five class I HDAC complexes: CoREST, NuRD, Sin3B, MiDAC and SMRT with site-specific acetylated nucleosome substrates. Our results demonstrate that these HDAC complexes show a wide variety of deacetylase rates in a site-selective manner. A Gly13 in the histone H3 tail is responsible for a sharp reduction in deacetylase activity of the CoREST complex for H3K14ac. These studies provide a framework for connecting enzymatic and biological functions of specific HDAC complexes.
    Keywords:  biochemistry; chemical biology; human
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.57663
  4. J Biol Chem. 2020 Jun 01. pii: jbc.RA119.012121. [Epub ahead of print]
    Liu M, Zhu Y, Xing F, Liu S, Xia Y, Jiang Q, Qin J.
      Polycomb group (PcG) proteins are essential for maintenance of lineage fidelity by coordinating developmental gene expression programs. Polycomb group ring finger 6 (PCGF6) has been previously reported to repress expression of lineage-specific genes, especially germ cell-related genes in mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs) via the non-canonical polycomb repressive complex PRC1.6. However, the molecular mechanism of this repression remains largely unknown. Here, using RNA-Seq, real-time RT-PCR, immunohistochemistry, immunoprecipitation, and ChIP analyses, we demonstrate that PCGF6 plays an essential role in embryonic development, indicated by the partially penetrant embryonic lethality in homozygous PCGF6 (Pcgf6-/-)-deficient mice. We also found that surviving Pcgf6-deficient mice exhibit reduced fertility. Using the Pcgf6-deficient mice, we observed that ablation of Pcgf6 in somatic tissues robustly derepresses germ cell-related genes. We further provide evidence that these genes are direct targets of PCGF6 in ESCs and that endogenous PCGF6 co-localizes with the histone-modifying proteins G9A histone methyltransferase (G9A)/G9a-like protein (GLP) and histone deacetylase 1/2 (HDAC1/2) on the promoters of the germ cell-related genes. Moreover, the binding of these proteins to their target genes correlated with methylation of Lys-9 of histone 3 (H3K9) and with the status of histone acetylation at these genes. Moreover, the recruitment of G9A/GLP and HDAC1/2 to target promoters was dependent on the binding of PCGF6. Our findings indicate that PCGF6 has a critical role in safeguarding lineage decisions and in preventing aberrant expression of germ cell-related genes.
    Keywords:  G9a/Glp; PRC1.6; Pcgf6; embryonic stem cell; gene knockout; germline gene silencing; histone deacetylase (HDAC); histone methylation; knockout mice; polycomb
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1074/jbc.RA119.012121
  5. Nucleic Acids Res. 2020 Jun 04. pii: gkaa474. [Epub ahead of print]
    Sansó M, Parua PK, Pinto D, Svensson JP, Pagé V, Bitton DA, MacKinnon S, Garcia P, Hidalgo E, Bähler J, Tanny JC, Fisher RP.
      Mono-ubiquitylation of histone H2B (H2Bub1) and phosphorylation of elongation factor Spt5 by cyclin-dependent kinase 9 (Cdk9) occur during transcription by RNA polymerase II (RNAPII), and are mutually dependent in fission yeast. It remained unclear whether Cdk9 and H2Bub1 cooperate to regulate the expression of individual genes. Here, we show that Cdk9 inhibition or H2Bub1 loss induces intragenic antisense transcription of ∼10% of fission yeast genes, with each perturbation affecting largely distinct subsets; ablation of both pathways de-represses antisense transcription of over half the genome. H2Bub1 and phospho-Spt5 have similar genome-wide distributions; both modifications are enriched, and directly proportional to each other, in coding regions, and decrease abruptly around the cleavage and polyadenylation signal (CPS). Cdk9-dependence of antisense suppression at specific genes correlates with high H2Bub1 occupancy, and with promoter-proximal RNAPII pausing. Genetic interactions link Cdk9, H2Bub1 and the histone deacetylase Clr6-CII, while combined Cdk9 inhibition and H2Bub1 loss impair Clr6-CII recruitment to chromatin and lead to decreased occupancy and increased acetylation of histones within gene coding regions. These results uncover novel interactions between co-transcriptional histone modification pathways, which link regulation of RNAPII transcription elongation to suppression of aberrant initiation.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1093/nar/gkaa474
  6. Genes (Basel). 2020 May 28. pii: E595. [Epub ahead of print]11(6):
    Fioriniello S, Marano D, Fiorillo F, D'Esposito M, Della Ragione F.
      Pericentric heterochromatin (PCH) is a particular form of constitutive heterochromatin that is localized to both sides of centromeres and that forms silent compartments enriched in repressive marks. These genomic regions contain species-specific repetitive satellite DNA that differs in terms of nucleotide sequences and repeat lengths. In spite of this sequence diversity, PCH is involved in many biological phenomena that are conserved among species, including centromere function, the preservation of genome integrity, the suppression of spurious recombination during meiosis, and the organization of genomic silent compartments in the nucleus. PCH organization and maintenance of its repressive state is tightly regulated by a plethora of factors, including enzymes (e.g., DNA methyltransferases, histone deacetylases, and histone methyltransferases), DNA and histone methylation binding factors (e.g., MECP2 and HP1), chromatin remodeling proteins (e.g., ATRX and DAXX), and non-coding RNAs. This evidence helps us to understand how PCH organization is crucial for genome integrity. It then follows that alterations to the molecular signature of PCH might contribute to the onset of many genetic pathologies and to cancer progression. Here, we describe the most recent updates on the molecular mechanisms known to underlie PCH organization and function.
    Keywords:  ATRX; DNA methylation; HP1; MeCP2; non-coding RNAs; pericentric heterochromatin; repressive compartments; satellite DNA
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3390/genes11060595
  7. Front Genet. 2020 ;11 450
    Ummethum H, Hamperl S.
      Mammals contain over 200 different cell types, yet nearly all have the same genomic DNA sequence. It is a key question in biology how the genetic instructions in DNA are selectively interpreted by cells to specify various transcriptional programs and therefore cellular identity. The structural and functional organization of chromatin governs the transcriptional state of individual genes. To understand how genomic loci adopt different levels of gene expression, it is critical to characterize all local chromatin factors as well as long-range interactions in the 3D nuclear compartment. Much of our current knowledge regarding protein interactions in a chromatin context is based on affinity purification of chromatin components coupled to mass spectrometry (AP-MS). AP-MS has been invaluable to map strong protein-protein interactions in the nucleus. However, the interaction is detected after cell lysis and biochemical enrichment, allowing for loss or gain of false positive or negative interaction partners. Recently, proximity-dependent labeling methods have emerged as powerful tools for studying chromatin in its native context. These methods take advantage of engineered enzymes that are fused to a chromatin factor of interest and can directly label all factors in proximity. Subsequent pull-down assays followed by mass spectrometry or sequencing approaches provide a comprehensive snapshot of the proximal chromatin interactome. By combining this method with dCas9, this approach can also be extended to study chromatin at specific genomic loci. Here, we review and compare current proximity-labeling approaches available for studying chromatin, with a particular focus on new emerging technologies that can provide important insights into the transcriptional and chromatin interaction networks essential for cellular identity.
    Keywords:  APEX2; BioID; ChIP; affinity purification; dCas9; mass spectrometry; protein-protein interactions; proxisome
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3389/fgene.2020.00450
  8. Nat Commun. 2020 Jun 04. 11(1): 2818
    Mugat B, Nicot S, Varela-Chavez C, Jourdan C, Sato K, Basyuk E, Juge F, Siomi MC, Pélisson A, Chambeyron S.
      In eukaryotes, trimethylation of lysine 9 on histone H3 (H3K9) is associated with transcriptional silencing of transposable elements (TEs). In drosophila ovaries, this heterochromatic repressive mark is thought to be deposited by SetDB1 on TE genomic loci after the initial recognition of nascent transcripts by PIWI-interacting RNAs (piRNAs) loaded on the Piwi protein. Here, we show that the nucleosome remodeler Mi-2, in complex with its partner MEP-1, forms a subunit that is transiently associated, in a MEP-1 C-terminus-dependent manner, with known Piwi interactors, including a recently reported SUMO ligase, Su(var)2-10. Together with the histone deacetylase Rpd3, this module is involved in the piRNA-dependent TE silencing, correlated with H3K9 deacetylation and trimethylation. Therefore, drosophila piRNA-mediated transcriptional silencing involves three epigenetic effectors, a remodeler, Mi-2, an eraser, Rpd3 and a writer, SetDB1, in addition to the Su(var)2-10 SUMO ligase.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-16635-5
  9. Bioessays. 2020 Jun 03. e2000002
    Hainer SJ, Kaplan CD.
      The remodel the structure of chromatin (RSC) nucleosome remodeling complex is a conserved chromatin regulator with roles in chromatin organization, especially over nucleosome depleted regions therefore functioning in gene expression. Recent reports in Saccharomyces cerevisiae have identified specificities in RSC activity toward certain types of nucleosomes. RSC has now been shown to preferentially evict nucleosomes containing the histone variant H2A.Z in vitro. Furthermore, biochemical activities of distinct RSC complexes has been found to differ when their nucleosome substrate is partially unraveled. Mammalian BAF complexes, the homologs of yeast RSC and SWI/SNF complexes, are also linked to nucleosomes with H2A.Z, but this relationship may be complex and extent of conservation remains to be determined. The interplay of remodelers with specific nucleosome substrates and regulation of remodeler outcomes by nucleosome composition are tantalizing questions given the wave of structural data emerging for RSC and other SWI/SNF family remodelers.
    Keywords:  H2AZ; RSC; chromatin remodeler; histone variant; nucleosome
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1002/bies.202000002
  10. Methods Enzymol. 2020 ;pii: S0076-6879(20)30143-9. [Epub ahead of print]639 217-236
    Petronikolou N, Longbotham JE, Fujimori DG.
      Histone demethylases catalyze the removal of methyl marks from histones, an activity associated with transcriptional regulation and DNA damage repair. As these processes are critical for normal physiology, deregulation of histone demethylases is disease causative, and their function and regulation are targets for therapeutic intervention. The larger of two histone demethylase families are Jumonji C (JmjC) demethylases. The members of the JmjC family share a conserved catalytic domain, and often contain non-catalytic domains that "read" the modification state of chromatin. By binding to specific histone modifications, reader domains assist in recruitment and promote accumulation of demethylases at their targets, as well as regulate their activity and substrate specificity. Here, we present protocols for the investigation of this functional coupling between reader and catalytic domains in human histone demethylase KDM5A. Although we use KDM5A and its PHD1 domain as our model system, the procedures presented herein can be applied for the biochemical characterization of other JmjC demethylases and chromatin readers.
    Keywords:  Chromatin; Fluoresecence polarization; Histone demethylases; PHD; Reader domains
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/bs.mie.2020.04.015
  11. Genes Cells. 2020 Jun 05.
    Sato S, Tanaka N, Arimura Y, Kujirai T, Kurumizaka H.
      Nucleosome positioning and stability affect gene regulation in eukaryotic chromatin. Histone H2A.Z is an evolutionally conserved histone variant that forms mobile and unstable nucleosomes in vivo and in vitro. In the present study, we reconstituted nucleosomes containing human H2A.Z.1 mutants, in which the N-terminal or C-terminal half of H2A.Z.1 was replaced by the corresponding canonical H2A region. We found that the N-terminal portion of H2A.Z.1 is involved in flexible nucleosome positioning, whereas the C-terminal portion leads to weak H2A.Z.1-H2B association in the nucleosome. These results indicate that the N-terminal and C-terminal portions are independently responsible for the H2A.Z.1 nucleosome characteristics.
    Keywords:  H2A.Z; epigenetics; histone variant; nucleosome positioning; nucleosome stability
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1111/gtc.12791
  12. Gut. 2020 Jun 05. pii: gutjnl-2020-321339. [Epub ahead of print]
    Južnić L, Peuker K, Strigli A, Brosch M, Herrmann A, Häsler R, Koch M, Matthiesen L, Zeissig Y, Löscher BS, Nuber A, Schotta G, Neumeister V, Chavakis T, Kurth T, Lesche M, Dahl A, von Mässenhausen A, Linkermann A, Schreiber S, Aden K, Rosenstiel PC, Franke A, Hampe J, Zeissig S.
      OBJECTIVE: The intestinal epithelium is a rapidly renewing tissue which plays central roles in nutrient uptake, barrier function and the prevention of intestinal inflammation. Control of epithelial differentiation is essential to these processes and is dependent on cell type-specific activity of transcription factors which bind to accessible chromatin. Here, we studied the role of SET Domain Bifurcated Histone Lysine Methyltransferase 1, also known as ESET (SETDB1), a histone H3K9 methyltransferase, in intestinal epithelial homeostasis and IBD.DESIGN: We investigated mice with constitutive and inducible intestinal epithelial deletion of Setdb1, studied the expression of SETDB1 in patients with IBD and mouse models of IBD, and investigated the abundance of SETDB1 variants in healthy individuals and patients with IBD.
    RESULTS: Deletion of intestinal epithelial Setdb1 in mice was associated with defects in intestinal epithelial differentiation, barrier disruption, inflammation and mortality. Mechanistic studies showed that loss of SETDB1 leads to de-silencing of endogenous retroviruses, DNA damage and intestinal epithelial cell death. Predicted loss-of-function variants in human SETDB1 were considerably less frequently observed than expected, consistent with a critical role of SETDB1 in human biology. While the vast majority of patients with IBD showed unimpaired mucosal SETDB1 expression, comparison of IBD and non-IBD exomes revealed over-representation of individual rare missense variants in SETDB1 in IBD, some of which are predicted to be associated with loss of function and may contribute to the pathogenesis of intestinal inflammation.
    CONCLUSION: SETDB1 plays an essential role in intestinal epithelial homeostasis. Future work is required to investigate whether rare variants in SETDB1 contribute to the pathogenesis of IBD.
    Keywords:  IBD; IBD - genetics; epithelial differentiation; gut inflammation; intestinal epithelium
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1136/gutjnl-2020-321339
  13. Trends Biochem Sci. 2020 Jun 01. pii: S0968-0004(20)30144-4. [Epub ahead of print]
    Chan JC, Maze I.
      Histone post-translational modifications (PTMs) have emerged as exciting mechanisms of biological regulation, impacting pathways related to cancer, immunity, brain function, and more. Over the past decade alone, several histone PTMs have been discovered, including acylation, lipidation, monoaminylation, and glycation, many of which appear to have crucial roles in nucleosome stability and transcriptional regulation. In this review, we discuss novel histone PTMs identified within the past 10 years, with an extended focus on enzymatic versus nonenzymatic mechanisms underlying modification and adduction. Furthermore, we consider how these novel histone PTMs might fit within the framework of a so-called 'histone code', emphasizing the physiological relevance of these PTMs in metabolism, development, and disease states.
    Keywords:  acylation; glycation; histone code hypothesis; lipidation; monoaminylation; nonenzymatic adduction
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tibs.2020.05.009
  14. Cold Spring Harb Symp Quant Biol. 2020 Jun 03. pii: 040360. [Epub ahead of print]
    Sanulli S, Gross JD, Narlikar GJ.
      Heterochromatin is a classic context for studying the mechanisms of chromatin organization. At the core of a highly conserved type of heterochromatin is the complex formed between chromatin methylated on histone H3 lysine 9 and HP1 proteins. This type of heterochromatin plays central roles in gene repression, genome stability, and nuclear mechanics. Systematic studies over the last several decades have provided insight into the biophysical mechanisms by which the HP1-chromatin complex is formed. Here, we discuss these studies together with recent findings indicating a role for phase separation in heterochromatin organization and function. We suggest that the different functions of HP1-mediated heterochromatin may rely on the increasing diversity being uncovered in the biophysical properties of HP1-chromatin complexes.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1101/sqb.2019.84.040360
  15. Cancer Cell Int. 2020 ;20 175
    Zhang R, Li X, Liu Z, Wang Y, Zhang H, Xu H.
      Background: Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is the most aggressive subtype of breast cancer that lacks expression of estrogen receptor (ER) and progesterone receptor (PR) and the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) gene. Chemotherapy remains the standard of care for TNBC treatment, but considerable patients are very resistant to chemotherapy. Mutations or aberrant upregulation of EZH2 occur frequently, and EZH2 inhibitor (EZH2i) showed some preclinic antitumor effects in TNBC.Methods: RNA-seq data of 3 TNBC cell lines either treated with 2 μM GSK343, or stably transduced with shEHZ2, compared to untreated controls (GSE112378) were analyzed by Limma R package. The Kaplan-Meier plotter (KM plotter) database was used to assess the relevance of FOSB mRNA expression to relapse-free survival (RFS) in TNBC. Cell number counting and colony formation assays were used to detect the biological effect of FOSB on the growth of TNBC cells in vitro. The effect of FOSB on TNBC tumor growth in vivo was investigated in a mice tumor xenograft model. Luciferase reporter and chromatin immunoprecipitation (Chip) assays were used to determine the regulatory roles of C/EBPβ on FOSB expression.
    Results: We found that FOSB, a member of the activator protein-1 complex, was a direct downstream target of EZH2. FOSB was significantly decreased in TNBC samples and associated with better relapse-free survival (RFS). EZH2-mediated histone 3 trimethylated on lysine 27 (H3K27me3), a marker of silent chromatin conformation, at the FOSB promoter inhibited it expression. Depletion of FOSB in TNBC cells promoted cell proliferation in vitro and tumor growth in vitro by inactivating the p53 pathway and conferred resistant to EZH2 inhibitor (EZH2i). Mechanistically, EZH2i promotes the shift from H3K27me3 to H3K27ac at the FOSB promoter, and recruits the transcription factor C/EBPβ to activate FOSB gene transcription.
    Conclusion: Together, our results suggest that EZH2-mediated epigenetic inactivation of FOSB promotes TNBC expression and demonstrate that reactivation of FOSB expression by C/EBPβ underlies the anti-TNBC action of EZH2is.
    Keywords:  C/EBPβ; EZH2; Epigenetic inactivation; FOSB; TNBC
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s12935-020-01260-5
  16. PLoS Genet. 2020 Jun 05. 16(6): e1008799
    Wu S, Ge Y, Li X, Yang Y, Zhou H, Lin K, Zhang Z, Zhao Y.
      TRF2 and TRF1 are a key component in shelterin complex that associates with telomeric DNA and protects chromosome ends. BRM is a core ATPase subunit of SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling complex. Whether and how BRM-SWI/SNF complex is engaged in chromatin end protection by telomeres is unknown. Here, we report that depletion of BRM does not affect heterochromatin state of telomeres, but results in telomere dysfunctional phenomena including telomere uncapping and replication defect. Mechanistically, expression of TRF2 and TRF1 is jointly regulated by BRM-SWI/SNF complex, which is localized to promoter region of both genes and facilitates their transcription. BRM-deficient cells bear increased TRF2-free or TRF1-free telomeres due to insufficient expression. Importantly, BRM depletion-induced telomere uncapping or replication defect can be rescued by compensatory expression of exogenous TRF2 or TRF1, respectively. Together, these results identify a new function of BRM-SWI/SNF complex in enabling functional telomeres for maintaining genome stability.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pgen.1008799
  17. Viruses. 2020 May 30. pii: E596. [Epub ahead of print]12(6):
    Fukuda K, Shinkai Y.
      SETDB1 (SET domain bifurcated histone lysine methyltransferase 1) is a protein lysine methyltransferase and methylates histone H3 at lysine 9 (H3K9). Among other H3K9 methyltransferases, SETDB1 and SETDB1-mediated H3K9 trimethylation (H3K9me3) play pivotal roles for silencing of endogenous and exogenous retroelements, thus contributing to genome stability against retroelement transposition. Furthermore, SETDB1 is highly upregulated in various tumor cells. In this article, we describe recent advances about how SETDB1 activity is regulated, how SETDB1 represses various types of retroelements such as L1 and class I, II, and III endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) in concert with other epigenetic factors such as KAP1 and the HUSH complex and how SETDB1-mediated H3K9 methylation can be maintained during replication.
    Keywords:  H3K9me3; SETDB1; heterochromatin
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3390/v12060596
  18. J Virol. 2020 Jun 03. pii: JVI.00926-20. [Epub ahead of print]
    Piracha ZZ, Saeed U, Kim J, Kwon H, Chwae YJ, Lee HW, Lim JH, Park S, Shin HJ, Kim K.
      Sirtuin 2 (Sirt2), an NAD+-dependent protein deacetylase, deacetylates tubulin, AKT, and other proteins. Previously, we showed that Sirt2 isoform 1 (Sirt2.1) increased replication of hepatitis B virus (HBV). Here, we show that HBV replication upregulates expression of Sirt2 primary and alternatively spliced transcripts, and their respective isoforms 1, 2, and 5. Since Sirt2 isoform 5 (Sirt2.5) is a catalytically inactive nuclear protein with a spliced-out nuclear export signal (NES), we speculated that its different localization may affect its activity. Overexpression of Sirt2.5 reduced expression of HBV mRNAs, replicative intermediate DNAs, and covalently closed circular DNA (cccDNA), an activity opposite to that of Sirt2.1 and Sirt2.2. Unlike the Sirt2.1-AKT interaction, the Sirt2.5-AKT interaction was weakened by HBV replication. Unlike Sirt2.1, Sirt2.5 activated the AKT/GSK-3β/β-catenin signaling pathway very weakly and independently of HBV replication. When the NES and an N-terminal truncated catalytic domain were added to the Sirt2.5 construct, it localized in the cytoplasm and increased HBV replication (like Sirt2.1 and Sirt2.2). Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays revealed that more Sirt2.5 was recruited to cccDNA than Sirt2.1. Also, recruitment of histone lysine methyltransferases (HKMTs) such as SETDB1 and SUV39H1, EZH2, and PR-Set7, and their respective transcriptional repressive markers H3K9me3, H3K27me3, and H4K20me1, to cccDNA increased in Sirt2.5-overexpressing cells. Among these, the Sirt2.5-PR-Set7 and -SETDB1 interactions increased upon HBV replication. These results demonstrate that Sirt2.5 reduces cccDNA levels and viral transcription through epigenetic modification of cccDNA via direct and/or indirect association with HKMTs, thereby exhibiting anti-HBV activity.IMPORTANCE Sirt2, a predominant cytoplasmic α-tubulin deacetylase, promotes growth of hepatocellular carcinoma; indeed, HBV replication increases Sirt2 expression, and overexpression of Sirt2 is associated with hepatic fibrosis and epithelial to mesenchymal transition. Increased amounts of Sirt2 isoforms 1, 2, and 5 upon HBV replication might further upregulate HBV replication, leading to vicious cycle of virus replication/disease progression. However, we show here that catalytically inactive nuclear Sirt2.5 antagonizes the effects of Sirt2.1 and Sirt2.2 on HBV replication, thereby inhibiting cccDNA level, transcription of cccDNA, and subsequent synthesis of replicative intermediate DNA. More Sirt2.5 was recruited to cccDNA than Sirt2.1, thereby increasing epigenetic modification by depositing transcriptional repressive markers, possibly through direct and/or indirect association with histone lysine methyltransferases such as SETDB1, SUV39H1, EZH2, and/or PR-Set7, which represses HBV transcription. Thus, Sirt2.5 might provide a functional cure for HBV by silencing transcription of HBV.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1128/JVI.00926-20
  19. Elife. 2020 Jun 04. pii: e58130. [Epub ahead of print]9
    Schlichter A, Kasten MM, Parnell TJ, Cairns BR.
      SWI/SNF-family chromatin remodeling complexes, such as S. cerevisiae RSC, slide and eject nucleosomes to regulate transcription. Within nucleosomes, stiff DNA sequences confer spontaneous partial unwrapping, prompting whether and how SWI/SNF-family remodelers are specialized to remodel partially-unwrapped nucleosomes. RSC1 and RSC2 are orthologs of mammalian PBRM1 (polybromo) which define two separate RSC sub-complexes. Remarkably, in vitro the Rsc1-containing complex remodels partially-unwrapped nucleosomes much better than does the Rsc2-containing complex. Moreover, a rsc1Δ mutation, but not rsc2Δ, is lethal with histone mutations that confer partial unwrapping. Rsc1/2 isoforms both cooperate with the DNA-binding proteins Rsc3/30 and the HMG protein, Hmo1, to remodel partially-unwrapped nucleosomes, but show differential reliance on these factors. Notably, genetic impairment of these factors strongly reduces the expression of genes with wide nucleosome-deficient regions (e.g. ribosomal protein genes), known to harbor partially-unwrapped nucleosomes. Taken together, Rsc1/2 isoforms are specialized through composition and interactions to manage and remodel partially-unwrapped nucleosomes.
    Keywords:  S. cerevisiae; biochemistry; chemical biology; chromosomes; gene expression
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.58130
  20. Clin Epigenetics. 2020 Jun 05. 12(1): 80
    Damaschke NA, Gawdzik J, Avilla M, Yang B, Svaren J, Roopra A, Luo JH, Yu YP, Keles S, Jarrard DF.
      BACKGROUND: The chromatin insulator CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) displays tissue-specific DNA binding sites that regulate transcription and chromatin organization. Despite evidence linking CTCF to the protection of epigenetic states through barrier insulation, the impact of CTCF loss on genome-wide DNA methylation sites in human cancer remains undefined.RESULTS: Here, we demonstrate that prostate and breast cancers within The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) exhibit frequent copy number loss of CTCF and that this loss is associated with increased DNA methylation events that occur preferentially at CTCF binding sites. CTCF sites differ among tumor types and result in tissue-specific methylation patterns with little overlap between breast and prostate cancers. DNA methylation and transcriptome profiling in vitro establish that forced downregulation of CTCF leads to spatially distinct DNA hypermethylation surrounding CTCF binding sites, loss of CTCF binding, and decreased gene expression that is also seen in human tumors. DNA methylation inhibition reverses loss of expression at these CTCF-regulated genes.
    CONCLUSION: These findings establish CTCF loss as a major mediator in directing localized DNA hypermethylation events in a tissue-specific fashion and further support its role as a driver of the cancer phenotype.
    Keywords:  CTCF; Cancer; DNA methylation
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s13148-020-00869-7
  21. Curr Opin Genet Dev. 2020 Jun 01. pii: S0959-437X(20)30037-X. [Epub ahead of print]61 83-90
    Zidovska A.
      The organization and dynamics of human genome govern all cellular processes - directly impacting the central dogma of biology - yet are poorly understood, especially at large length scales. Chromatin, the functional form of DNA in cells, undergoes frequent local remodeling and rearrangements to accommodate processes such as transcription, replication and DNA repair. How these local activities contribute to nucleus-wide coherent chromatin motion, where micron-scale regions of chromatin move together over several seconds, remains unclear. Activity of nuclear enzymes was found to drive the coherent chromatin dynamics, however, its biological nature and physical mechanism remain to be revealed. The coherent dynamics leads to a perpetual stirring of the genome, leading to collective gene dynamics over microns and seconds, thus likely contributing to local and global gene-expression patterns. Hence, a possible biological role of chromatin coherence may involve gene regulation.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gde.2020.03.008
  22. Br J Cancer. 2020 Jun 05.
    Yamamoto T, Hirosue A, Nakamoto M, Yoshida R, Sakata J, Matsuoka Y, Kawahara K, Nagao Y, Nagata M, Takahashi N, Hiraki A, Shinohara M, Nakao M, Saitoh N, Nakayama H.
      BACKGROUND: Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) has increased morbidity, and its high metastatic potential affects patient survival. Bromodomain containing 4 (BRD4) is a chromatin protein that associates with acetylated histone lysines and facilitates transcription. BRD4 has been implicated in cell proliferation, metastasis, and prognosis in several types of cancer. However, the role of BRD4 in OSCC remains to be elucidated.METHODS: We investigated the role of BRD4 and its potential utility as a therapeutic target in OSCC.
    RESULTS: JQ1, the BRD4 inhibitor, suppressed the cell proliferation, migration, and invasion in the OSCC cell lines and in vivo. JQ1 reduced the expression levels of 15 metastasis genes in OSCC, including matrix metallopeptidase 2 (MMP2). Our chromatin immunoprecipitation assay showed that JQ1 reduced the BRD4 binding to the histone H3 lysine 27 acetylation-enriched sites in the MMP2 locus. Analyses of biopsy specimens from OSCC patients revealed that the BRD4 and MMP2 expression levels were correlated in the cancerous regions, and both were highly expressed in lymph node metastasis cases, including delayed metastasis.
    CONCLUSIONS: BRD4 contributes to metastasis in OSCC, through the epigenetic regulation of the MMP2 gene, and thus BRD4 may represent a therapeutic target and a novel prediction indicator for metastasis.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1038/s41416-020-0907-6
  23. Elife. 2020 Jun 03. pii: e54341. [Epub ahead of print]9
    Shipkovenska G, Durango A, Kalocsay M, Gygi SP, Moazed D.
      Heterochromatic domains containing histone H3 lysine 9 methylation (H3K9me) can be epigenetically inherited independently of underlying DNA sequence. To gain insight into the mechanisms that mediate epigenetic inheritance, we used a Schizosaccharomyces pombe inducible heterochromatin formation system to perform a genetic screen for mutations that abolish heterochromatin inheritance without affecting its establishment. We identified mutations in several pathways, including the conserved and essential Rix1-associated complex (henceforth the rixosome), which contains RNA endonuclease and polynucleotide kinase activities with known roles in ribosomal RNA processing. We show that the rixosome is required for spreading and epigenetic inheritance of heterochromatin in fission yeast. Viable rixosome mutations that disrupt its association with Swi6/HP1 fail to localize to heterochromatin, lead to accumulation of heterochromatic RNAs, and block spreading of H3K9me and silencing into actively transcribed regions. These findings reveal a new pathway for degradation of heterochromatic RNAs with essential roles in heterochromatin spreading and inheritance.
    Keywords:  H3K9 methylation; RNA degradation; Rix1; S. pombe; cell biology; chromosomes; epigenetics; gene expression; heterochromatin; rixosome
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.54341
  24. Front Vet Sci. 2020 ;7 231
    Li X, Xiao H, Jian X, Zhang X, Zhang H, Mu Y, Wang H, Chen S, Cong R.
      Liver is the place where cholesterol is synthesized, transported, secreted, and transformed, thus liver takes an irreplaceable role in cholesterol homeostasis. Hepatic cholesterol metabolism differs between breeds, yet the molecular mechanism is unclear. In this study Large White (LW) and Erhualian (EHL) piglets (at birth and 25-day-old) were used, 6 each time point per breed. Erhualian piglets had significantly lower body and liver weight compared with Large White at birth and weaning, but the liver/ body weight ratio was higher at weaning, associated with increased serum and liver cholesterol and triglyceride content. The mRNA expression of Cholesterol-7alpha-hydroxylase (CYP7a1) and Recombinant Acetyl Coenzyme Acetyltransferase 2 (ACAT2) were down-regulated in Erhualian piglets at birth, while hepatic Sterol-regulatory element binding protein 2 (SREBP2) mRNA expression was up-regulated in Erhualian piglets at weaning, as well as SREBP2 protein content, compared with Large White piglets. At birth, the depressed CYP7a1 transcription in Erhualian piglets was associated with decreased Histone H3 (H3) and increased Histone H3 lysine 27 trimethylation (H3K27me3). While the results revealed significant promoter hypermethylation of 3-Hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase (HMGCR) promoter in Erhualian piglets at weaning, together with increased Histone H3 lysine 9 monomethylation (H3K9me1) and Histone H3 lysine 4 trimethylation (H3K4me3). These results suggest that epigenetic modification may be an important mechanism in hepatic cholesterol metabolism among different species, which is vital for maintaining cholesterol homeostasis and decreasing risk of cardiovascular disease.
    Keywords:  CYP7a1; HMGCR; cholesterol metabolism; epigenetic regulation; liver; piglets
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2020.00231
  25. Protein Cell. 2020 Jun 06.
    Bi S, Liu Z, Wu Z, Wang Z, Liu X, Wang S, Ren J, Yao Y, Zhang W, Song M, Liu GH, Qu J.
      SIRT7, a sirtuin family member implicated in aging and disease, is a regulator of metabolism and stress responses. It remains elusive how human somatic stem cell populations might be impacted by SIRT7. Here, we found that SIRT7 expression declines during human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) aging and that SIRT7 deficiency accelerates senescence. Mechanistically, SIRT7 forms a complex with nuclear lamina proteins and heterochromatin proteins, thus maintaining the repressive state of heterochromatin at nuclear periphery. Accordingly, deficiency of SIRT7 results in loss of heterochromatin, de-repression of the LINE1 retrotransposon (LINE1), and activation of innate immune signaling via the cGAS-STING pathway. These aging-associated cellular defects were reversed by overexpression of heterochromatin proteins or treatment with a LINE1 targeted reverse-transcriptase inhibitor. Together, these findings highlight how SIRT7 safeguards chromatin architecture to control innate immune regulation and ensure geroprotection during stem cell aging.
    Keywords:  LINE1; SIRT7; STING; aging; cGAS; stem cell
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1007/s13238-020-00728-4
  26. mBio. 2020 Jun 02. pii: e01110-20. [Epub ahead of print]11(3):
    Fan Y, Shen S, Wei G, Tang J, Zhao Y, Wang F, He X, Guo G, Shang X, Yu X, Ma Z, He X, Liu M, Zhu Q, Le Z, Wei G, Cao J, Jiang C, Zhang Q.
      The heterochromatin environment plays a central role in silencing genes associated with the malaria parasite's development, survival in the host, and transmission to the mosquito vector. However, the underlying mechanism regulating the dynamic chromatin structure is not understood yet. Here, we have uncovered that Plasmodium falciparum Rrp6, an orthologue of eukaryotic RNA exosome-associated RNase, controls the silencing of heterochromatic genes. PfRrp6 knockdown disrupted the singular expression of the GC-rich ncRNA RUF6 family, a known critical regulator of virulence gene expression, through the stabilization of the nascent transcripts. Mechanistic investigation showed that the accumulation of the multiple RUF6 ncRNAs triggered local chromatin remodeling in situ, which activated their adjacent var genes. Strikingly, chromatin isolation by RNA purification analysis (ChIRP-seq) revealed that a remarkable RUF6 ncRNA had interacted with distal heterochromatin regions directly and stimulated a global derepression effect on heterochromatic genes, including all variant gene families and the sexual commitment-associated regulator ap2-g gene. Collectively, Rrp6 appears to conduct the epigenetic surveillance of heterochromatic gene expression through controlling RUF6 levels, thereby securing antigenic variation and sexual commitment of malaria parasites during the infection of the host.IMPORTANCE Malaria remains a major public health and economic burden. The heterochromatin environment controls the silencing of genes associated with the fate of malaria parasites. Previous studies have demonstrated that a group of GC-rich ncRNAs (RUF6) is associated with the mutually exclusive expression of var genes, but the underlying mechanisms remain elusive. Here, through a series of genetic manipulation and genome-wide multiomics analysis, we have identified the plasmodial orthologue of RNA exosome-associated Rrp6 as an upstream regulator of RUF6 expression and revealed that the dysregulation of RUF6 upon Rrp6 knockdown triggered local chromatin alteration, thereby activating most heterochromatic genes via direct interaction of RUF6 and distal gene loci. This finding not only uncovered the in-depth mechanism of RUF6-mediated regulation of heterochromatic genes but also identified Rrp6 as a novel regulator of gene expression in human malaria parasites, which provides a new target for developing intervention strategies against malaria.
    Keywords:  RNA exosome; gene regulation; heterochromatin; malaria; ncRNA
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1128/mBio.01110-20
  27. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2020 Jun 01. pii: 201919507. [Epub ahead of print]
    Devaiah BN, Mu J, Akman B, Uppal S, Weissman JD, Cheng D, Baranello L, Nie Z, Levens D, Singer DS.
      The protooncogene MYC regulates a variety of cellular processes, including proliferation and metabolism. Maintaining MYC at homeostatic levels is critical to normal cell function; overexpression drives many cancers. MYC stability is regulated through phosphorylation: phosphorylation at Thr58 signals degradation while Ser62 phosphorylation leads to its stabilization and functional activation. The bromodomain protein 4 (BRD4) is a transcriptional and epigenetic regulator with intrinsic kinase and histone acetyltransferase (HAT) activities that activates transcription of key protooncogenes, including MYC We report that BRD4 phosphorylates MYC at Thr58, leading to MYC ubiquitination and degradation, thereby regulating MYC target genes. Importantly, BRD4 degradation, but not inhibition, results in increased levels of MYC protein. Conversely, MYC inhibits BRD4's HAT activity, suggesting that MYC regulates its own transcription by limiting BRD4-mediated chromatin remodeling of its locus. The MYC stabilizing kinase, ERK1, regulates MYC levels directly and indirectly by inhibiting BRD4 kinase activity. These findings demonstrate that BRD4 negatively regulates MYC levels, which is counteracted by ERK1 activation.
    Keywords:  BRD4 histone acetyltransferase; BRD4 kinase; ERK1; MYC phosphorylation; MYC stability
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1919507117
  28. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2020 ;8 340
    Dong W, Kong M, Zhu Y, Shao Y, Wu D, Lu J, Guo J, Xu Y.
      Liver fibrosis is a complex pathophysiological process to which many different cell types contribute. Endothelial cells play versatile roles in the regulation of liver fibrosis. The underlying epigenetic mechanism is not fully appreciated. In the present study, we investigated the role of BRG1, a chromatin remodeling protein, in the modulation of endothelial cells in response to pro-fibrogenic stimuli in vitro and liver fibrosis in mice. We report that depletion of BRG1 by siRNA abrogated TGF-β or hypoxia induced down-regulation of endothelial marker genes and up-regulation of mesenchymal marker genes in cultured endothelial cells. Importantly, endothelial-specific BRG1 deletion attenuated CCl4 induced liver fibrosis in mice. BRG1 knockdown in vitro or BRG1 knockout in vivo was accompanied by the down-regulation of TWIST, a key regulator of endothelial phenotype. Mechanistically, BRG1 interacted with and was recruited to the TWIST promoter by HIF-1α to activate TWIST transcription. BRG1 silencing rendered a more repressive chromatin structure surrounding the TWIST promoter likely contributing to TWIST down-regulation. Inhibition of HIF-1α activity dampened liver fibrosis in mice. Similarly, pharmaceutical inhibition of TWIST alleviated liver fibrosis in mice. In conclusion, our data suggest that epigenetic activation of TWIST by BRG1 contributes to the modulation of endothelial phenotype and liver fibrosis. Therefore, targeting the HIF1α-BRG1-TWIST axis may yield novel therapeutic solutions to treat liver fibrosis.
    Keywords:  Brg1; endothelial cell; epigenetics; liver fibrosis; transcriptional regulation
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3389/fcell.2020.00340
  29. Cell. 2020 Jun 03. pii: S0092-8674(20)30621-8. [Epub ahead of print]
    Samata M, Alexiadis A, Richard G, Georgiev P, Nuebler J, Kulkarni T, Renschler G, Basilicata MF, Zenk FL, Shvedunova M, Semplicio G, Mirny L, Iovino N, Akhtar A.
      Before zygotic genome activation (ZGA), the quiescent genome undergoes reprogramming to transition into the transcriptionally active state. However, the mechanisms underlying euchromatin establishment during early embryogenesis remain poorly understood. Here, we show that histone H4 lysine 16 acetylation (H4K16ac) is maintained from oocytes to fertilized embryos in Drosophila and mammals. H4K16ac forms large domains that control nucleosome accessibility of promoters prior to ZGA in flies. Maternal depletion of MOF acetyltransferase leading to H4K16ac loss causes aberrant RNA Pol II recruitment, compromises the 3D organization of the active genomic compartments during ZGA, and causes downregulation of post-zygotically expressed genes. Germline depletion of histone deacetylases revealed that other acetyl marks cannot compensate for H4K16ac loss in the oocyte. Moreover, zygotic re-expression of MOF was neither able to restore embryonic viability nor onset of X chromosome dosage compensation. Thus, maternal H4K16ac provides an instructive function to the offspring, priming future gene activation.
    Keywords:  H4K16ac; MOF; X chromosome; ZGA; bookmarking; dosage compensation initiation; epigenetics; memory; nucleosome accessibility; pronuclei apposition; zygotic genome activation
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2020.05.026
  30. Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2020 May 27. pii: S0955-0674(20)30051-X. [Epub ahead of print]64 105-111
    Sparks TM, Harabula I, Pombo A.
      The genome requires tight regulation in space and time to maintain viable cell functions. Advances in our understanding of the 3D genome show a complex hierarchical network of structures, involving compartments, membraneless bodies, topologically associating domains, lamina associated domains, protein- or RNA-mediated loops, enhancer-promoter contacts, and accessible chromatin regions, with chromatin state regulation through epigenetic and transcriptional mechanisms. Further technology developments are poised to increase genomic resolution, dissect single-cell behaviors, including in vivo dynamics of genome folding, and provide mechanistic perspectives that identify further 3D genome players by integrating multiomics information. We highlight recent key developments in 4D nucleome methodologies and give a perspective on their future directions.
    Keywords:  3D topology; Genome; Imaging; Long-range chromatin contacts; Single-cell biology
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ceb.2020.04.005
  31. J Genet Genomics. 2020 Mar 19. pii: S1673-8527(20)30050-3. [Epub ahead of print]
    Dou K, Liu Y, Zhang Y, Wang C, Huang Y, Zhang ZZ.
      Serving as a host factor for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) integration, LEDGF/p75 has been under extensive study as a potential target for therapy. However, as a highly conserved protein, its physiological function remains to be thoroughly elucidated. Here, we characterize the molecular function of dP75, the Drosophila homolog of LEDGF/p75, during oogenesis. dP75 binds to transcriptionally active chromatin with its PWWP domain. The C-terminus integrase-binding domain-containing region of dP75 physically interacts with the histone kinase Jil-1 and stabilizes it in vivo. Together with Jil-1, dP75 prevents the spreading of the heterochromatin mark-H3K9me2-onto genes required for oogenesis and piRNA production. Without dP75, ectopical silencing of these genes disrupts oogenesis, activates transposons, and causes animal sterility. We propose that dP75, the homolog of an HIV host factor in Drosophila, partners with and stabilizes Jil-1 to ensure gene expression during oogenesis by preventing ectopic heterochromatin spreading.
    Keywords:  Drosophila; H3K9me2; Jil-1; LEDGF/p75
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jgg.2020.02.008
  32. Nat Commun. 2020 Jun 01. 11(1): 2722
    Oudelaar AM, Beagrie RA, Gosden M, de Ornellas S, Georgiades E, Kerry J, Hidalgo D, Carrelha J, Shivalingam A, El-Sagheer AH, Telenius JM, Brown T, Buckle VJ, Socolovsky M, Higgs DR, Hughes JR.
      Mammalian gene expression patterns are controlled by regulatory elements, which interact within topologically associating domains (TADs). The relationship between activation of regulatory elements, formation of structural chromatin interactions and gene expression during development is unclear. Here, we present Tiled-C, a low-input chromosome conformation capture (3C) technique. We use this approach to study chromatin architecture at high spatial and temporal resolution through in vivo mouse erythroid differentiation. Integrated analysis of chromatin accessibility and single-cell expression data shows that regulatory elements gradually become accessible within pre-existing TADs during early differentiation. This is followed by structural re-organization within the TAD and formation of specific contacts between enhancers and promoters. Our high-resolution data show that these enhancer-promoter interactions are not established prior to gene expression, but formed gradually during differentiation, concomitant with progressive upregulation of gene activity. Together, these results provide new insight into the close, interdependent relationship between chromatin architecture and gene regulation during development.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-16598-7
  33. Theriogenology. 2020 May 23. pii: S0093-691X(20)30321-6. [Epub ahead of print]154 43-52
    Wang Y, Li Y, Luan D, Kang J, He R, Zhang Y, Quan F.
      The histone variant H3.3 is an important maternal factor in fertilization of oocytes and reprogramming of somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) embryos. As a crucial replacement histone, maternal H3.3 is involved in chromatin remodeling and zygote genome activation. Litte is, however, known about the replacement of H3.3 in the bovine SCNT embryos. In this study, the maternal H3.3 in mature ooplasm was labeled with HA tag and the donor cells H3.3 was labeled with Flag tag, in order to observe the replacement of H3.3 in the bovine SCNT embryos. Meanwhile, maternal H3.3 knockdown was performed by microinjecting two different interfering fragments before nucleus transfer. It was showed that the dynamic replacement between maternal- and donor nucleus-derived H3.3 was detected after SCNT. And it could be observed that the blastocyst development rate of the cloned embryos decreased from 22.3% to 8.2-10.3% (P < 0.05), the expression of Pou5f1 and Sox2 was down-regulated and the level of H3K9me3 was increased in the interfered embryos. In summary, H3.3 replacement impacted on the process of reprogramming, including embryonic development potential, activation of pluripotency genes and epigenetic modification in bovine SCNT embryos.
    Keywords:  Bovine; H3.3 replacement; H3k9me3; Pluripotency genes; SCNT embryo
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.theriogenology.2020.05.031
  34. Biophys J. 2020 May 20. pii: S0006-3495(20)30415-X. [Epub ahead of print]
    Maji A, Ahmed JA, Roy S, Chakrabarti B, Mitra MK.
      We propose a simple model for chromatin organization based on the interaction of the chromatin fibers with lamin proteins along the nuclear membrane. Lamin proteins are known to be a major factor that influences chromatin organization and hence gene expression in the cells. We provide a quantitative understanding of lamin-associated chromatin organization in a crowded macromolecular environment by systematically varying the heteropolymer segment distribution and the strength of the lamin-chromatin attractive interaction. Our minimal polymer model reproduces the formation of lamin-associated-domains and provides an in silico tool for quantifying domain length distributions for different distributions of heteropolymer segments. We show that a Gaussian distribution of heteropolymer segments, coupled with strong lamin-chromatin interactions, can qualitatively reproduce observed length distributions of lamin-associated-domains. Further, lamin-mediated interaction can enhance the formation of chromosome territories as well as the organization of chromatin into tightly packed heterochromatin and the loosely packed gene-rich euchromatin regions.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bpj.2020.05.014
  35. iScience. 2020 May 18. pii: S2589-0042(20)30362-X. [Epub ahead of print]23(6): 101177
    Sandlesh P, Safina A, Goswami I, Prendergust L, Rosario S, Gomez EC, Wang J, Gurova KV.
      Histone chaperone FACT is commonly expressed and essential for the viability of transformed but not normal cells, and its expression levels correlate with poor prognosis in patients with cancer. FACT binds several components of nucleosomes and has been viewed as a factor destabilizing nucleosomes to facilitate RNA polymerase passage. To connect FACT's role in transcription with the viability of tumor cells, we analyzed genome-wide FACT binding to chromatin in conjunction with transcription in mouse and human cells with different degrees of FACT dependence. Genomic distribution and density of FACT correlated with the intensity of transcription. However, FACT knockout or knockdown was unexpectedly accompanied by the elevation, rather than suppression, of transcription and with the destabilization of chromatin in transformed, but not normal cells. These data suggest that FACT stabilizes and reassembles nucleosomes disturbed by transcription. This function is vital for tumor cells because malignant transformation is accompanied by chromatin destabilization.
    Keywords:  Biological Sciences; Cancer; Chromosome Organization; Molecular Biology
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2020.101177
  36. Chromosoma. 2020 Jun 05.
    Ilyin AA, Stolyarenko AD, Klenov MS, Shevelyov YY.
      Heterochromatin protein 1a (HP1a) is a well-known component of pericentromeric and telomeric heterochromatin in Drosophila. However, its role and the mechanisms of its binding in the chromosome arms (ChAs) remain largely unclear. Here, we identified HP1a-interacting domains in the somatic cells of Drosophila ovaries using a DamID-seq approach and compared them with insertion sites of transposable elements (TEs) revealed by genome sequencing. Although HP1a domains cover only 13% of ChAs, they non-randomly associate with 42% of TE insertions. Furthermore, HP1a on average propagates at 2-kb distances from the TE insertions. These data confirm the role of TEs in formation of HP1a islands in ChAs. However, only 18% of HP1a domains have adjacent TEs, indicating the existence of other mechanisms of HP1a domain formation besides spreading from TEs. In particular, many TE-independent HP1a domains correspond to the regions attached to the nuclear pore complexes (NPCs) or contain active gene promoters. However, HP1a occupancy on the promoters does not significantly influence expression of corresponding genes. At the same time, the steady-state transcript level of many genes located outside of HP1a domains was altered upon HP1a knockdown in the somatic cells of ovaries, thus pointing to the strong indirect effect of HP1a depletion. Collectively, our results support an existence of at least three different mechanisms of HP1a domain emergence in ChAs: spreading from TE insertions, transient interactions with the chromatin located near NPCs, and targeting to the promoters of moderately expressed genes.
    Keywords:  Drosophila; HP1a; Heterochromatin; Ovary; Transposable element
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1007/s00412-020-00738-5
  37. Cancer Lett. 2020 May 27. pii: S0304-3835(20)30291-3. [Epub ahead of print]487 63-73
    Hou Z, Sun L, Xu F, Hu F, Lan J, Song D, Feng Y, Wang J, Luo X, Hu J, Wang G.
      The histone methyltransferase SETDB1 catalyzes the addition of methyl groups to histone H3 at lysine 9, and upregulation of SETDB1 is associated with poor prognosis in cancer patients. Here, we describe how overexpression of SETDB1 contributes to colorectal cancer (CRC) tumorigenesis and drug resistance. We show that SETDB1 is upregulated in CRC, and its level correlates with poor clinical outcome. SETDB1 attenuation inhibits CRC cell proliferation Mechanistically, SETDB1 promotes cell proliferation by upregulating Akt activation. Further, SETDB1 is essential for the tumorigenic activity of Akt. Functional characterization revealed that inhibition of SETDB1 reduces cell growth in CRC resistant to targeted treatments in vitro and in vivo, KRAS-mutated CRC included. Taken together, our results indicate that SETDB1 is a major driver of CRC and may serve as a potential target for the treatment of KRAS-mutated CRC.
    Keywords:  Cetuximab sensitivity; Colorectal cancer; SETDB1
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.canlet.2020.05.029
  38. Theranostics. 2020 ;10(13): 5845-5864
    Shang J, Zhu Z, Chen Y, Song J, Huang Y, Song K, Zhong J, Xu X, Wei J, Wang C, Cui L, Liu CY, Zhang J.
      Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the leading cause of cancer death; however, targets with broad anti-CRC effects are limited. Sirtuin6 (SIRT6) is a conserved nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+)-dependent deacetylase that is widely pathologically downregulated in CRC, but its pharmacological effect in CRC remains undefined due to the lack of small-molecule SIRT6 activators. We searched for a compound activating SIRT6 and investigated its anti-CRC effect in various models. Methods: We identified an allosteric SIRT6 activator, MDL-811. Its ability to enhance SIRT6 deacetylation at protein and cellular levels was evaluated by Fluor de Lys (FDL) and western blots. We assessed the proliferation of 26 CRC cell lines and patient-derived organoids (PDOs) treated with MDL-811. In vivo efficacy of MDL-811 was evaluated in HCT116 cell line- and patient-derived xenografts as well as a spontaneous CRC model. RNA sequencing and real-time quantitative PCR assays were performed to analyze gene expression changes in MDL-811-treated HCT116 cells. Along with controls in SIRT6-overexpressing HCT116 cells, the SIRT6-mediated histone H3 deacetylation at the Cytochrome P450 family 24 subfamily A member 1 (CYP24A1) gene locus was assessed by chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) in MDL-811-treated HCT116 cells. A combination therapy against CRC based on the downstream gene of SIRT6 activation was evaluated in cells and mouse models. Results: MDL-811 significantly activated SIRT6 histone H3 deacetylation (H3K9Ac, H3K18Ac, and H3K56Ac) in vitro and had broad antiproliferative effects on diverse CRC cell lines and PDOs. More importantly, the in vivo anti-tumor efficacy of MDL-811 was demonstrated across cell line- and patient-derived xenografts and in the APCmin/+ spontaneous CRC model. Mechanically, we identified a new downstream target gene of SIRT6 in CRC, CYP24A1. Based on these findings, a combination drug strategy with MDL-811 to synergistically enhance the anti-CRC effect of vitamin D3 was validated in vitro and in vivo. Conclusions: Our data provide proof of concept that targeting SIRT6 using a small-molecule activator is an attractive therapeutic strategy for CRC and that MDL-811 could be a promising lead compound for further preclinical and clinical studies of treatments for CRC.
    Keywords:  CYP24A1; Colorectal cancer; SIRT6 activator; Translational medicine; Vitamin D3
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.7150/thno.44043
  39. Sci Adv. 2020 Apr;6(16): eaaz0356
    Hou Y, Liu W, Yi X, Yang Y, Su D, Huang W, Yu H, Teng X, Yang Y, Feng W, Zhang T, Gao J, Zhang K, Qiu R, Wang Y.
      TUDOR domain-containing proteins (TDRDs) are chiefly responsible for recognizing methyl-lysine/arginine residue. However, how TDRD dysregulation contributes to breast tumorigenesis is poorly understood. Here, we report that TUDOR domain-containing PHF20L1 as a H3K27me2 reader exerts transcriptional repression by recruiting polycomb repressive complex 2 (PRC2) and Mi-2/nucleosome remodeling and deacetylase (NuRD) complex, linking PRC2-mediated methylation and NuRD-mediated deacetylation of H3K27. Furthermore, PHF20L1 was found to serve as a potential MYC and hypoxia-driven oncogene, promoting glycolysis, proliferation, and metastasis of breast cancer cells by directly inhibiting tumor suppressors such as HIC1, KISS1, and BRCA1. PHF20L1 expression was also strongly correlated with higher histologic grades of breast cancer and markedly up-regulated in several cancers. Meanwhile, Phf20l1 deletion not only induces growth retardation and mammary ductal outgrowth delay but also inhibits tumorigenesis in vivo. Our data indicate that PHF20L1 promotes tumorigenesis, supporting the pursuit of PHF20L1 as a target for cancer therapy.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aaz0356
  40. J Exp Bot. 2020 Jun 01. pii: eraa264. [Epub ahead of print]
    Zhang B, Sztojka B, Seyfferth C, Escamez S, Miskolczi P, Chantreau M, Bakó L, Delhomme N, Gorzsás A, Bhalerao RP, Tuominen H.
      PIRIN2 (PRN2) was earlie rreported to suppress syringyl (S)-type lignin accumulation of xylem vessels of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). In the present study we report yeast-two hybrid results supporting the interaction of PRN2 with HISTONE MONOUBIQUITINATION2 (HUB2) in Arabidopsis. HUB2 has been previously implicated in several plant developmental processes, but not in lignification. Interaction between PRN2 and HUB2 was verified by β-galactosidase enzymatic and co-immunoprecipitation assays. HUB2 promoted the deposition of S-type lignin in the secondary cell walls of both stem and hypocotyl tissues, as analysed by pyrolysis-gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. Chemical fingerprinting of individual xylem vessel cell walls by Raman and Fourier transform infrared microspectroscopy supported the function of HUB2 in lignin deposition. These results, together with a genetic analysis of the hub2 prn2 double mutant, support antagonistic function of PRN2 and HUB2 in deposition of S-type lignin. Transcriptome analyses indicated the opposite regulation of the S-type lignin biosynthetic FERULATE-5-HYDROXYLASE1 by PRN2 and HUB2 as the underlying mechanism. PRN2 and HUB2 promoter activities co-localised in cells neighboring the xylem vessel elements, suggesting that the S-type lignin promoting function of HUB2 is antagonized by PRN2 for the benefit of the guaiacyl (G)-type lignin enrichment of the neighboring xylem vessel elements.
    Keywords:  Arabidopsis; HUB2; PIRIN2; cell wall chemistry; lignin; syringyl-type lignin; xylem vessels
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1093/jxb/eraa264
  41. Sci Adv. 2020 May;6(21): eaay3823
    van der Vaart A, Godfrey M, Portegijs V, van den Heuvel S.
      SWI/SNF (switch/sucrose nonfermenting) complexes regulate transcription through chromatin remodeling and opposing gene silencing by Polycomb group (PcG) proteins. Genes encoding SWI/SNF components are critical for normal development and frequently mutated in human cancer. We characterized the in vivo contributions of SWI/SNF and PcG complexes to proliferation-differentiation decisions, making use of the reproducible development of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. RNA interference, lineage-specific gene knockout, and targeted degradation of SWI/SNF BAF components induced either overproliferation or acute proliferation arrest of precursor cells, depending on residual protein levels. Our data show that a high SWI/SNF BAF dosage is needed to arrest cell division during differentiation and to oppose PcG-mediated repression. In contrast, a low SWI/SNF protein level is necessary to sustain cell proliferation and hyperplasia, even when PcG repression is blocked. These observations show that incomplete inactivation of SWI/SNF components can eliminate a tumor-suppressor activity while maintaining an essential transcription regulatory function.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aay3823
  42. J Clin Invest. 2020 Jun 02. pii: 135922. [Epub ahead of print]
    Auguste G, Rouhi L, Matkovich SJ, Coarfa C, Robertson MJ, Czernuszewicz G, Gurha P, Marian AJ.
      Mutation in the LMNA gene, encoding Lamin A/C, cause a diverse group of diseases called laminopathies. Cardiac involvement is the major cause of death and manifests as dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), heart failure, arrhythmias, and sudden death. There is no specific therapy for LMNA-associated cardiomyopathy. We report that deletion of Lmna in cardiac myocytes in mice leads to severe cardiac dysfunction, conduction defect, ventricular arrhythmias, fibrosis, apoptosis, and premature death within 4 weeks. The phenotype is similar to LMNA-associated cardiomyopathy in humans. RNA sequencing, performed prior to the onset of cardiac dysfunction, led to identification of 2,338 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in Lmna-deleted cardiac myocytes. DEGs predicted activation of bromodomain-containing protein 4 (BRD4), a regulator of chromatin-associated proteins and transcription factors, which was confirmed by complementary approaches, including chromatin immunoprecipitation-sequencing. Daily injection of JQ1, a specific BET bromodomain inhibitor partially reversed the DEGs, including those encoding secretome, improved cardiac function, abrogated cardiac arrhythmias, fibrosis, and apoptosis, and prolonged the median survival time by 2-fold in the myocyte-specific Lmna-deleted mice. The findings highlight the important role of LMNA in cardiac myocyte and identify BET bromodomain inhibition as a potential therapeutic target in LMNA-associated cardiomyopathy, for which there is no specific effective therapy.
    Keywords:  Cardiology; Cardiovascular disease; Fibrosis; Heart failure
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1172/JCI135922
  43. Mol Pharmacol. 2020 Jun 02. pii: mol.119.119008. [Epub ahead of print]
    Butcher NJ, Burow R, Minchin RF.
      Arylamine N-acetyltransferase 1 (NAT1) is a phase II xenobiotic-metabolizing enzyme that also has a role in cancer cell growth and metabolism. Recently, it was reported that NAT1 undergoes lysine acetylation, an important post-translational modification that can regulate protein function. In the current study, we use site-directed mutagenesis to identify K100 and K188 as major sites of lysine acetylation in the NAT1 protein. Acetylation of ectopically expressed NAT1 in HeLa cells was decreased by C646, an inhibitor of the protein acetyltransferases p300/CBP. Recombinant p300 directly acetylated NAT1 in vitro. Acetylation of NAT1 was enhanced by the sirtuin inhibitor nicotinamide but not by the histone deacetylase inhibitor trichostatin A. Co-transfection of cells with NAT1 and either SIRT 1 or 2, but not SIRT3, significantly decreased NAT1 acetylation. NAT1 activity was evaluated in cells following nicotinamide treatment to enhance acetylation or co-transfection with SIRT1 to inhibit acetylation. The results indicated that NAT1 acetylation altered its enzyme kinetics, suggesting changes in acetyl coenzyme A binding. In addition, acetylation attenuated the allosteric effects of ATP on NAT1. Taken together, this study shows that NAT1 is acetylated by p300/CBP in situ and is deacetylated by the sirtuins SIRT1 and 2. It is hypothesized that post-translational modification of NAT1 by acetylation at K100 and K188 may modulate NAT1 effects in cells. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT: There is growing evidence that arylamine N-acetyltransferase 1 has an important cellular role, in addition to xenobiotic metabolism. Here, we show that NAT1 is acetylated at K100 and K188 and changes in protein acetylation equilibrium can modulate its activity in cells.
    Keywords:  Acetylation; N-acetyltransferases; Phase II drug metabolism
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1124/mol.119.119008
  44. J Cell Sci. 2020 Jun 04. pii: jcs.244863. [Epub ahead of print]
    Sun L, Liu XM, Li WZ, Yi YY, He X, Wang Y, Jin QW.
      In the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, both RNAi machinery and RNAi- independent factors mediate transcriptional and posttranscriptional silencing and heterochromatin formation. Here, we show that the silencing of reporter genes at major native heterochromatic loci (centromeres, telomeres, mating-type locus and rDNA regions) and an artificially induced heterochromatin locus is alleviated in a fission yeast hsp90 mutant, hsp90-G84C Also, H3K9me2 enrichment at heterochromatin regions, especially at the mating-type locus and subtelomeres, is compromised, suggesting heterochromatin assembly defects. We further discovered that Hsp90 is required for stabilization or assembly of the RNAi effector complexes RITS and ARC, RNAi-independent factor Fft3, shelterin complex subunit Poz1 and SHREC. Our ChIP data suggest that Hsp90 regulates the efficient recruitment of CLRC by shelterin to chromosome ends and targeting of SHREC and Fft3 to mating type locus and/or rDNA region. Finally, our genetic analyses demonstrated that increased heterochromatin spreading restores silencing at subtelomeres in hsp90-G84C mutant. Thus, this work uncovers a conserved factor critical for promoting RNAi-dependent and -independent heterochromatin assembly and gene silencing through stabilizing multiple effectors and effector complexes.
    Keywords:  Fission yeast; Heat-shock molecular chaperon; Heterochromatic gene silencing; Hsp90; RNAi; Schizosaccharomyces pombe
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1242/jcs.244863
  45. Cell Death Differ. 2020 Jun 03.
    Zheng T, Zhou H, Li X, Peng D, Yang Y, Zeng Y, Liu H, Ren J, Zhao Y.
      ATR is a master regulator of cell response to replication stress. Adequate activation of ATR is essential for preventing genome aberrance induced by replication defect. However, the mechanism underlying ATR activation is not fully understood. Here, we identify that RBMX is an ssDNA binding protein that orchestrates a novel pathway to activate ATR. Using super-resolution STORM, we observe that RBMX and RPA bind to adjacent but nonoverlapping sites on ssDNA in response to replication stress. RBMX then binds to and facilitates positioning of TopBP1, which activates nearby ATR associated with RPA. In addition, ATR activation by ssDNA-RBMX-TopBP1 is independent of ssDNA-dsDNA junction and 9-1-1 complex. ChIP-seq analysis reveals that RBMX/RPA are highly enriched on repetitive DNAs, which are considered as fragile sites with high replication stress. RBMX depletion leads to defective localization of TopBP1 to replication stressed sites and inadequate activation of ATR. Furthermore, cells with deficient RBMX demonstrate replication defect, leading to formation of micronuclei and a high rate of sister-chromatin exchange, indicative of genome instability. Together, the results identify a new ssDNA-RBMX-TopBP1 pathway that is specifically required for activation of ATR on repetitive DNAs. Therefore, RBMX is a key factor to ensure genome stability during replication.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1038/s41418-020-0570-8
  46. Genome Biol. 2020 Jun 02. 21(1): 132
    Qiu C, Jin H, Vvedenskaya I, Llenas JA, Zhao T, Malik I, Visbisky AM, Schwartz SL, Cui P, Čabart P, Han KH, Lai WKM, Metz RP, Johnson CD, Sze SH, Pugh BF, Nickels BE, Kaplan CD.
      BACKGROUND: The majority of eukaryotic promoters utilize multiple transcription start sites (TSSs). How multiple TSSs are specified at individual promoters across eukaryotes is not understood for most species. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a pre-initiation complex (PIC) comprised of Pol II and conserved general transcription factors (GTFs) assembles and opens DNA upstream of TSSs. Evidence from model promoters indicates that the PIC scans from upstream to downstream to identify TSSs. Prior results suggest that TSS distributions at promoters where scanning occurs shift in a polar fashion upon alteration in Pol II catalytic activity or GTF function.RESULTS: To determine the extent of promoter scanning across promoter classes in S. cerevisiae, we perturb Pol II catalytic activity and GTF function and analyze their effects on TSS usage genome-wide. We find that alterations to Pol II, TFIIB, or TFIIF function widely alter the initiation landscape consistent with promoter scanning operating at all yeast promoters, regardless of promoter class. Promoter architecture, however, can determine the extent of promoter sensitivity to altered Pol II activity in ways that are predicted by a scanning model.
    CONCLUSIONS: Our observations coupled with previous data validate key predictions of the scanning model for Pol II initiation in yeast, which we term the shooting gallery. In this model, Pol II catalytic activity and the rate and processivity of Pol II scanning together with promoter sequence determine the distribution of TSSs and their usage.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s13059-020-02040-0
  47. Reprod Domest Anim. 2020 Jun 04.
    Yin S, Qin W, Wang B, Zhou J, Yang L, Xiong X, Li J.
      Cattleyak, which are interspecifc hybrids between cattle and yak, display much higher growth performances than yak. However, F1 male cattleyak are infertile due to defective testicular development. Sirtuin 1 (SIRT1) is a histone deacetylase that is essential for various biological processes, while the roles of testicular SIRT1 in yak and cattleyak are still poorly understood. Here we found that SIRT1 was localized in various kinds of yak testicular cells except elongated spermatids while it was deficient in cattleyak testis. Further studies indicated that cattleyak testis exhibited decreased histone acetylation levels on H3 and H4. One of SIRT1 co-factors, steroidogenic factor-1 (SF-1), was lost in cattleyak testis at protein level. Expressions of several SF-1 target genes responsible for Sertoli cell development and steroidogenesis, including STAR, CYP11A1, CYP26B1, FDX1 and HSD3B decreased significantly in cattleyak testis. In addition, SIRT1-mediated P53 acetylation was not responsible for the cell apoptosis in cattleyak testis. Taken together, our results suggested the deficiency of SIRT1 in yak testis caused inactivation of SF-1 and the impairment of testicular development. This research provides theoretical bases for understanding the mechanism of cattleyak sterility and gives new insights in revealing the roles of SIRT1 in regulating yak testicular development.
    Keywords:   SIRT1 ; SF-1; cattleyak; histone deacetylase; testis
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1111/rda.13737
  48. Curr Opin Chem Biol. 2020 May 27. pii: S1367-5931(20)30053-3. [Epub ahead of print]58 10-19
    Nakatsu K, Hayashi G, Okamoto A.
      Histone post-translational modifications play significant roles in gene regulation processes. Among many approaches, chemical protein synthesis has been a successful and promising method for the preparation of homogeneous products of site-specifically modified histones for elucidation of their biological significance. In this short review, we describe the recent advances in synthetic toolbox for histone proteins such as thioester precursors, chemical ubiquitination, and one-pot peptide ligation.
    Keywords:  Chemical protein synthesis; Histone; Native chemical ligation; Post-translational modifications
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cbpa.2020.04.016
  49. Nat Commun. 2020 Jun 01. 11(1): 2696
    Xia B, Zhao D, Wang G, Zhang M, Lv J, Tomoiaga AS, Li Y, Wang X, Meng S, Cooke JP, Cao Q, Zhang L, Chen K.
      Conversion between cell types, e.g., by induced expression of master transcription factors, holds great promise for cellular therapy. Our ability to manipulate cell identity is constrained by incomplete information on cell identity genes (CIGs) and their expression regulation. Here, we develop CEFCIG, an artificial intelligent framework to uncover CIGs and further define their master regulators. On the basis of machine learning, CEFCIG reveals unique histone codes for transcriptional regulation of reported CIGs, and utilizes these codes to predict CIGs and their master regulators with high accuracy. Applying CEFCIG to 1,005 epigenetic profiles, our analysis uncovers the landscape of regulation network for identity genes in individual cell or tissue types. Together, this work provides insights into cell identity regulation, and delivers a powerful technique to facilitate regenerative medicine.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-16539-4