1. Chromosomes and Gene Expression
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Temporal dynamics and developmental memory of 3D chromatin architecture at Hox gene loci

  1. Daan Noordermeer
  2. Marion Leleu
  3. Patrick Schorderet
  4. Elisabeth Joye
  5. Fabienne Chabaud
  6. Denis Duboule  Is a corresponding author
  1. Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale Lausanne, Switzerland
  2. University of Geneva, Switzerland
Research Article
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Cite this article as: eLife 2014;3:e02557 doi: 10.7554/eLife.02557

Abstract

Hox genes are essential regulators of embryonic development. Their step-wise transcriptional activation follows their genomic topology and the various states of activation are subsequently memorized into domains of progressively overlapping gene products. We have analyzed the 3D chromatin organization of Hox clusters during their early activation in vivo, using high-resolution circular chromosome conformation capture. Initially, Hox clusters are organized as single chromatin compartments containing all genes and bivalent chromatin marks. Transcriptional activation is associated with a dynamic bi-modal 3D organization, whereby the genes switch autonomously from an inactive to an active compartment. These local 3D dynamics occur within a framework of constitutive interactions within the surrounding Topological Associated Domains, indicating that this regulation process is mostly cluster intrinsic. The step-wise progression in time is fixed at various body levels and thus can account for the chromatin architectures previously described at a later stage for different anterior to posterior levels.

Article and author information

Author details

  1. Daan Noordermeer

    Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  2. Marion Leleu

    Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  3. Patrick Schorderet

    Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  4. Elisabeth Joye

    Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  5. Fabienne Chabaud

    University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  6. Denis Duboule

    Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland
    For correspondence
    denis.duboule@epfl.ch
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.

Ethics

Animal experimentation: All experiments were performed in agreement with the Swiss law on animal protection (LPA) under license 1008/3482/0 to DD

Reviewing Editor

  1. Robb Krumlauf, Stowers Institute for Medical Research, United States

Publication history

  1. Received: February 16, 2014
  2. Accepted: April 7, 2014
  3. Accepted Manuscript published: April 29, 2014 (version 1)
  4. Version of Record published: May 13, 2014 (version 2)

Copyright

© 2014, Noordermeer et al.

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

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