The mechanisms by which mammalian cells recognize and epigenetically restrict viral DNA are not well defined. We used herpes simplex virus with bioorthogonally labeled genomes to detect host factors recruited to viral DNA shortly after its nuclear entry and found that the cellular IFI16, PML, and ATRX proteins colocalized with viral DNA by 15 min post infection. HSV-1 infection of ATRX-depleted fibroblasts resulted in elevated viral mRNA and accelerated viral DNA accumulation. Despite the early association of ATRX with vDNA, we found that initial viral heterochromatin formation is ATRX-independent. However, viral heterochromatin stability required ATRX from 4-8 h post infection. Inhibition of transcription blocked viral chromatin loss in ATRX-knockout cells; thus, ATRX is uniquely required for heterochromatin maintenance during chromatin stress. These results argue that the initial formation and the subsequent maintenance of viral heterochromatin are separable mechanisms, a concept that likely extrapolates to host cell chromatin and viral latency.
- David M Knipe
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- Stephen P Goff, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Columbia University, United States
© 2018, Cabral et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
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Eukaryotic replication origins are licensed by the loading of the replicative DNA helicase, Mcm2-7, in inactive double hexameric form around DNA. Subsequent origin activation is under control of multiple protein kinases that either promote or inhibit origin activation, which is important for genome maintenance. Using the reconstituted budding yeast DNA replication system, we find that the flexible N-terminal extension (NTE) of Mcm2 promotes the stable recruitment of Dbf4-dependent kinase (DDK) to Mcm2-7 double hexamers, which in turn promotes DDK phosphorylation of Mcm4 and −6 and subsequent origin activation. Conversely, we demonstrate that the checkpoint kinase, Rad53, inhibits DDK binding to Mcm2-7 double hexamers. Unexpectedly, this function is not dependent on Rad53 kinase activity, suggesting steric inhibition of DDK by activated Rad53. These findings identify critical determinants of the origin activation reaction and uncover a novel mechanism for checkpoint-dependent origin inhibition.
Negative feedback regulation, that is the ability of a gene to repress its own synthesis, is the most abundant regulatory motif known to biology. Frequently reported for transcriptional regulators, negative feedback control relies on binding of a transcription factor to its own promoter. Here, we report a novel mechanism for gene autoregulation in bacteria relying on small regulatory RNA (sRNA) and the major endoribonuclease, RNase E. TIER-seq analysis (transiently-inactivating-an-endoribonuclease-followed-by-RNA-seq) revealed ~25,000 RNase E-dependent cleavage sites in Vibrio cholerae, several of which resulted in the accumulation of stable sRNAs. Focusing on two examples, OppZ and CarZ, we discovered that these sRNAs are processed from the 3’ untranslated region (3’ UTR) of the oppABCDF and carAB operons, respectively, and base-pair with their own transcripts to inhibit translation. For OppZ, this process also triggers Rho-dependent transcription termination. Our data show that sRNAs from 3’ UTRs serve as autoregulatory elements allowing negative feedback control at the post-transcriptional level.