Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Roles Of DNA Packaging Protein Revealed

Date:
February 20, 2009
Source:
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Summary:
Scientists have found that a class of chromatin proteins is crucial for maintaining the structure and function of chromosomes and the normal development of eukaryotic organisms.

Photo chromosome strands are aligned in a wild type fly.
Credit: Reprinted from Lu et al. (2009) with permission from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, Copyright 2009

Scientists at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University have found that a class of chromatin proteins is crucial for maintaining the structure and function of chromosomes and the normal development of eukaryotic organisms. The research also found that this protein class, known as linker histones, works to regulate gene expression in vivo.

Related Articles


H1 is one of the five histones - proteins that help to "package" the DNA within chromosomes. All organisms whose cells contain a nucleus - from yeast to humans - have histones in their nuclei. Interest in histones has deepened over the past decade, especially since a growing number of reports indicate that cancer cells often contain unusual patterns of histone modifications.

A chromosome's combination of histone proteins and DNA is referred to as chromatin. Four of the five histones called core histones form protein "spools" around which DNA is tightly wound into a nucleosome; H1 is called a "linker" histone because it binds the DNA between nucleosomes. H1 is thought to help in organizing and compacting the DNA in chromosomes, but questions persist about its actual role.

In previous studies, co-corresponding author Arthur I. Skoultchi, Ph.D., chair and Resnick Professor of Cell Biology at Einstein, showed that H1 is important to an organism's normal development by observing the effects of partially reducing H1 levels in mice. In this study, to assess H1's role in more detail, Dr. Skoultchi and his colleagues looked at what happened in fruit fly larvae when H1 protein within their nuclei was reduced to only 5 percent of normal levels.

The researchers found that H1 is necessary for holding together pericentric heterochromatin, the chromatin region close to the center of each chromosome. In cells in which H1 was depleted, heterochromatin was much more diffuse than normal. In addition, H1 was also found to be important for regulating the expression of those genes that reside in the heterochromatin region of chromosomes.

"We are especially excited about the system we've developed for studying H1 in fruit flies, because it allows us to closely examine H1's role in gene regulation," says Dr. Skoultchi.

Other Einstein researchers involved in the study are co-corresponding author Dmitry V. Fyodorov, assistant professor of cell biology, and Xingwu Lu, Sandeep N. Wontakal, Alexander V. Emelyanov, Patrick Morcillo, and Alexander Y. Konev.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Lu et al. Linker histone H1 is essential for Drosophila development, the establishment of pericentric heterochromatin, and a normal polytene chromosome structure. Genes & Development, Feb 9, 2009; DOI: 10.1101/gad.1749309

Cite This Page:

Albert Einstein College of Medicine. "Roles Of DNA Packaging Protein Revealed." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 February 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090212150840.htm>.
Albert Einstein College of Medicine. (2009, February 20). Roles Of DNA Packaging Protein Revealed. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 4, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090212150840.htm
Albert Einstein College of Medicine. "Roles Of DNA Packaging Protein Revealed." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090212150840.htm (accessed March 4, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Mom Triumphs Over Tragedy, Helps Other Families

Mom Triumphs Over Tragedy, Helps Other Families

AP (Mar. 3, 2015) After her son, Dax, died from a rare form of leukemia, Julie Locke decided to give back to the doctors at St. Jude Children&apos;s Research Hospital who tried to save his life. She raised $1.6M to help other patients and their families. (March 3) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Looted and Leaking, South Sudan's Oil Wells Pose Health Risk

Looted and Leaking, South Sudan's Oil Wells Pose Health Risk

AFP (Mar. 3, 2015) Thick black puddles and a looted, leaking ruin are all that remain of the Thar Jath oil treatment facility, once a crucial part of South Sudan&apos;s mainstay industry. Duration: 01:13 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Woman Convicted of Poisoning Son

Woman Convicted of Poisoning Son

AP (Mar. 3, 2015) A woman who blogged for years about her son&apos;s constant health woes was convicted Monday of poisoning him to death by force-feeding heavy concentrations of sodium through his stomach tube. (March 3) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Treadmill Test Can Predict Chance Of Death Within A Decade

Treadmill Test Can Predict Chance Of Death Within A Decade

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) Johns Hopkins researchers analyzed 58,000 heart stress tests to come up with a formula that predicts a person&apos;s chances of dying in the next decade. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins