Establishing and maintaining appropriate gene repression is critical for the health and development of multicellular organisms. Histone H3 lysine 27 (H3K27) methylation is a chromatin modification associated with repressed facultative heterochromatin, but the mechanism of this repression remains unclear. We used a forward genetic approach to identify genes involved in transcriptional silencing of H3K27-methylated chromatin in the filamentous fungus Neurospora crassa. We found that the N. crassa homologs of ISWI (NCU03875) and ACF1 (NCU00164) are required for repression of a subset of H3K27- methylated genes and that they form an ACF chromatin remodeling complex. This ACF complex interacts with chromatin throughout the genome, yet association with facultative heterochromatin is specifically promoted by the H3K27 methyltransferase, SET-7. H3K27-methylated genes that are upregulated when iswi or acf1 are deleted show a downstream shift of the +1 nucleosome, suggesting that proper nucleosome positioning is critical for repression of facultative heterochromatin. Our findings support a direct role for the ACF complex in Polycomb repression.
All RNA-seq, ChIP-seq, DamID-seq and MNase-seq data generated in this study have been submitted to the NCBI Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/geo/) under accession number GSE168277. All whole genome sequencing data haven been submitted to the NCBI Sequence Read Archive(SRA, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sra) under accession number PRJNA714693.
The ACF chromatin remodeling complex is essential for Polycomb repressionNCBI Gene Expression Omnibus, GSE168277.
The ACF chromatin remodeling complex is essential for Polycomb repressionNCBI Sequence Read Archive, PRJNA714693.
- Eric U Selker
- Eric U Selker
- Eric U Selker
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- Jerry L Workman, Stowers Institute for Medical Research, United States
- Preprint posted: June 30, 2021 (view preprint)
- Received: February 4, 2022
- Accepted: March 3, 2022
- Accepted Manuscript published: March 8, 2022 (version 1)
- Accepted Manuscript updated: March 9, 2022 (version 2)
- Version of Record published: April 25, 2022 (version 3)
- Version of Record updated: April 28, 2022 (version 4)
© 2022, Wiles 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.
The cohesin complex plays essential roles in chromosome segregation, 3D genome organisation, and DNA damage repair through its ability to modify DNA topology. In higher eukaryotes, meiotic chromosome function, and therefore fertility, requires cohesin complexes containing meiosis-specific kleisin subunits: REC8 and RAD21L in mammals and REC-8 and COH-3/4 in Caenorhabditis elegans. How these complexes perform the multiple functions of cohesin during meiosis and whether this involves different modes of DNA binding or dynamic association with chromosomes is poorly understood. Combining time-resolved methods of protein removal with live imaging and exploiting the temporospatial organisation of the C. elegans germline, we show that REC-8 complexes provide sister chromatid cohesion (SCC) and DNA repair, while COH-3/4 complexes control higher-order chromosome structure. High-abundance COH-3/4 complexes associate dynamically with individual chromatids in a manner dependent on cohesin loading (SCC-2) and removal (WAPL-1) factors. In contrast, low-abundance REC-8 complexes associate stably with chromosomes, tethering sister chromatids from S-phase until the meiotic divisions. Our results reveal that kleisin identity determines the function of meiotic cohesin by controlling the mode and regulation of cohesin–DNA association, and are consistent with a model in which SCC and DNA looping are performed by variant cohesin complexes that coexist on chromosomes.
Though long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) represent a substantial fraction of the Pol II transcripts in multicellular animals, only a few have known functions. Here we report that the blocking activity of the Bithorax complex (BX-C) Fub-1 boundary is segmentally regulated by its own lncRNA. The Fub-1 boundary is located between the Ultrabithorax (Ubx) gene and the bxd/pbx regulatory domain, which is responsible for regulating Ubx expression in parasegment PS6/segment A1. Fub-1 consists of two hypersensitive sites, HS1 and HS2. HS1 is an insulator while HS2 functions primarily as an lncRNA promoter. To activate Ubx expression in PS6/A1, enhancers in the bxd/pbx domain must be able to bypass Fub-1 blocking activity. We show that the expression of the Fub-1 lncRNAs in PS6/A1 from the HS2 promoter inactivates Fub-1 insulating activity. Inactivation is due to read-through as the HS2 promoter must be directed toward HS1 to disrupt blocking.