Article

Insight into the mechanism of nucleosome reorganization from histone mutants that suppress defects in the FACT histone chaperone.

Department of Biochemistry, University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, Utah 84112, USA.
Genetics (Impact Factor: 4.87). 05/2011; 188(4):835-46. DOI: 10.1534/genetics.111.128769
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT FACT (FAcilitates Chromatin Transcription/Transactions) plays a central role in transcription and replication in eukaryotes by both establishing and overcoming the repressive properties of chromatin. FACT promotes these opposing goals by interconverting nucleosomes between the canonical form and a more open reorganized form. In the forward direction, reorganization destabilizes nucleosomes, while the reverse reaction promotes nucleosome assembly. Nucleosome destabilization involves disrupting contacts among histone H2A-H2B dimers, (H3-H4)(2) tetramers, and DNA. Here we show that mutations that weaken the dimer:tetramer interface in nucleosomes suppress defects caused by FACT deficiency in vivo in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Mutating the gene that encodes the Spt16 subunit of FACT causes phenotypes associated with defects in transcription and replication, and we identify histone mutants that selectively suppress those associated with replication. Analysis of purified components suggests that the defective version of FACT is unable to maintain the reorganized nucleosome state efficiently, whereas nucleosomes with mutant histones are reorganized more easily than normal. The genetic suppression observed when the FACT defect is combined with the histone defect therefore reveals the importance of the dynamic reorganization of contacts within nucleosomes to the function of FACT in vivo, especially to FACT's apparent role in promoting progression of DNA replication complexes. We also show that an H2B mutation causes different phenotypes, depending on which of the two similar genes that encode this protein are altered, revealing unexpected functional differences between these duplicated genes and calling into question the practice of examining the effects of histone mutants by expressing them from a single plasmid-borne allele.

Download full-text

Full-text

Available from: Laura Mccullough, Oct 13, 2014
0 Followers
 · 
107 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: FACT (facilitates chromatin transcription) is a chromatin-reorganizing complex that swaps nucleosomes around the RNA polymerase during transcription elongation and has a role in replication that is not fully understood yet. Here we show that recombination factors are required for the survival of yeast FACT mutants, consistent with an accumulation of DNA breaks that we detected by Rad52 foci and transcription-dependent hyperrecombination. Breaks also accumulate in FACT-depleted human cells, as shown by γH2AX foci and single-cell electrophoresis. Furthermore, FACT-deficient yeast and human cells show replication impairment, which in yeast we demonstrate by ChIP-chip (chromatin immunoprecipitation [ChIP] coupled with microarray analysis) of Rrm3 to occur genome-wide but preferentially at highly transcribed regions. Strikingly, in yeast FACT mutants, high levels of Rad52 foci are suppressed by RNH1 overexpression; R loops accumulate at high levels, and replication becomes normal when global RNA synthesis is inhibited in FACT-depleted human cells. The results demonstrate a key function of FACT in the resolution of R-loop-mediated transcription-replication conflicts, likely associated with a specific chromatin organization.
    Genes & development 03/2014; DOI:10.1101/gad.234070.113 · 12.64 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The highly conserved FACT (Facilitates Chromatin Transactions) complex performs essential functions in eukaryotic cells through the reorganization of nucleosomes. During transcription, FACT reorganizes nucleosomes to allow passage of RNA Polymerase II and then assists in restoring these nucleosomes after RNA Polymerase II has passed. We have previously shown, consistent with this function, that Spt16 facilitates repression of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae SER3 gene by maintaining nucleosome occupancy over the promoter of this gene as a consequence of intergenic transcription of SRG1 noncoding DNA. In this study, we report the results of a genetic screen to identify mutations in SPT16 that derepress SER3. Twenty-five spt16 mutant alleles were found to derepress SER3 without causing significant reductions in either SRG1 RNA levels or Spt16 protein levels. Additional phenotypic assays indicate that these mutants have general transcription defects related to altered chromatin structure. Our analyses of a subset of these spt16 mutants reveal defects in SRG1 transcription-coupled nucleosome occupancy over the SER3 promoter. We provide evidence that these mutants broadly impair transcription-coupled nucleosome occupancy at highly transcribed genes but not at lowly transcribed genes. Finally, we show that one consequence shared by these mutations is the reduced binding of mutant Spt16 proteins across SRG1 and other highly transcribed genes. Taken together, our results highlight an important role for Spt16 in orchestrating transcription-coupled nucleosome assembly at highly transcribed regions of the genome, possibly by facilitating the association of Spt16 during this process.
    G3-Genes Genomes Genetics 05/2012; 2(5):555-67. DOI:10.1534/g3.112.002451 · 2.51 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: FACT is a roughly 180kDa heterodimeric protein complex important for managing the properties of chromatin in eukaryotic cells. Chromatin is a repressive barrier that plays an important role in protecting genomic DNA and regulating access to it. This barrier must be temporarily removed during transcription, replication, and repair, but it also must be rapidly restored to the original state afterwards. Further, the properties of chromatin are dynamic and must be adjusted as conditions dictate. FACT was identified as a factor that destabilizes nucleosomes in vitro, but it has now also been implicated as a central factor in the deposition of histones to form nucleosomes, as an exchange factor that swaps the histones within existing nucleosomes for variant forms, and as a tether that prevents histones from being displaced by the passage of RNA polymerases during transcription. FACT therefore plays central roles in building, maintaining, adjusting, and overcoming the chromatin barrier. This review summarizes recent results that have begun to reveal how FACT can promote what appear to be contradictory goals, using a simple set of binding activities to both enhance and diminish the stability of nucleosomes. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Histone chaperones and Chromatin assembly.
    Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 07/2011; 1819(3-4):247-55. DOI:10.1016/j.bbagrm.2011.07.009 · 4.66 Impact Factor