Chromatin conformation signatures of cellular differentiation

Department of Biochemistry and McGill Cancer Center, McGill University, 3655 Promenade Sir-William-Osler, Montréal, H3G1Y6, Canada.
Genome biology (Impact Factor: 10.47). 05/2009; 10(4):R37. DOI: 10.1186/gb-2009-10-4-r37
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT One of the major genomics challenges is to better understand how correct gene expression is orchestrated. Recent studies have shown how spatial chromatin organization is critical in the regulation of gene expression. Here, we developed a suite of computer programs to identify chromatin conformation signatures with 5C technology We identified dynamic HoxA cluster chromatin conformation signatures associated with cellular differentiation. Genome-wide chromatin conformation signature identification might uniquely identify disease-associated states and represent an entirely novel class of human disease biomarkers.

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    ABSTRACT: Although important for gene regulation, most studies of genome organization use either fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) or chromosome conformation capture (3C) methods. FISH directly visualizes the spatial relationship of sequences but is usually applied to a few loci at a time. The frequency at which sequences are ligated together by formaldehyde cross-linking can be measured genome-wide by 3C methods, with higher frequencies thought to reflect shorter distances. FISH and 3C should therefore give the same views of genome organization, but this has not been tested extensively. We investigated the murine HoxD locus with 3C carbon copy (5C) and FISH in different developmental and activity states and in the presence or absence of epigenetic regulators. We identified situations in which the two data sets are concordant but found other conditions under which chromatin topographies extrapolated from 5C or FISH data are not compatible. We suggest that products captured by 3C do not always reflect spatial proximity, with ligation occurring between sequences located hundreds of nanometers apart, influenced by nuclear environment and chromatin composition. We conclude that results obtained at high resolution with either 3C methods or FISH alone must be interpreted with caution and that views about genome organization should be validated by independent methods. © 2014 Williamson et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.
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    ABSTRACT: Chromatin interactions connect distal regulatory elements to target gene promoters guiding stimulus- and lineage-specific transcription. Few factors securing chromatin interactions have so far been identified. Here, by integrating chromatin interaction maps with the large collection of transcription factor-binding profiles provided by the ENCODE project, we demonstrate that the zinc-finger protein ZNF143 preferentially occupies anchors of chromatin interactions connecting promoters with distal regulatory elements. It binds directly to promoters and associates with lineage-specific chromatin interactions and gene expression. Silencing ZNF143 or modulating its DNA-binding affinity using single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) as a surrogate of site-directed mutagenesis reveals the sequence dependency of chromatin interactions at gene promoters. We also find that chromatin interactions alone do not regulate gene expression. Together, our results identify ZNF143 as a novel chromatin-looping factor that contributes to the architectural foundation of the genome by providing sequence specificity at promoters connected with distal regulatory elements.
    Nature Communications 01/2015; 2:6186. DOI:10.1038/ncomms7186 · 10.74 Impact Factor

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