The transcription factor Mef2 links the Drosophila core clock to Fas2, neuronal morphology and circadian behavior
ABSTRACT: The transcription factor Mef2 regulates activity-dependent neuronal plasticity and morphology in mammals, and clock neurons are reported to experience activity-dependent circadian remodeling in Drosophila. We show here that Mef2 is required for this daily fasciculation-defasciculation cycle. Moreover, the master circadian transcription complex CLK/CYC directly regulates Mef2 transcription. ChIP-Chip analysis identified numerous Mef2 target genes implicated in neuronal plasticity, including the cell-adhesion gene Fas2. Genetic epistasis experiments support this transcriptional regulatory hierarchy, CLK/CYC->Mef2-> Fas2, indicate that it influences the circadian fasciculation cycle within pacemaker neurons and suggest that this cycle also contributes to circadian behavior. Mef2 therefore transmits clock information to machinery involved in neuronal remodeling, which contributes to locomotor activity rhythms. Mef2 ChIP-chip samples collected at 6 timepoints, input and IP samples
Project description:Broadly expressed transcriptions factors (TFs) control tissue-specific programs of gene expression through interactions with local TF networks. Prime examples are the circadian clock TFs CLOCK (CLK) and CYCLE (CYC or BMAL1): while they control a core transcriptional circuit throughout animal bodies, downstream clock target genes and circadian physiology are tissue-specific. Here, we use ChIP-seq to determine the regulatory targets of Drosophila CLK and CYC, which we epitope-tagged by homologous recombination. Both TFs have distinct binding sites in heads versus bodies, suggesting that they directly control tissue-specific downstream target genes. Analysis of these context-specific binding sites revealed distinct sequence motifs for putative clock partner factors, including a motif for the GATA factor SERPENT (SRP). SRP indeed synergistically enhances CLK/CYC-mediated activity of a cis-regulatory region bound by CLK/CYC specifically in bodies. These results reveal how universal clock circuits can generate tissue-specific outputs and demonstrate an approach to dissect regulatory interactions more generally. We sequenced ChIP and input samples, as well as “mock” samples for which we performed ChIP with the V5 antibody from wildtype w- flies (not carrying the V5 tag) for two independent biological replicates each, summing to 24 libraries in total.
Project description:CLOCK (CLK) is a master transcriptional regulator of the circadian clock in Drosophila. To identify CLK direct target genes and address circadian transcriptional regulation in Drosophila, we performed chromatin immunoprecipitation-tiling array assays (ChIP-chip) with a number of circadian proteins. CLK binding cycles on at least 800 sites with maximal binding in the early night. The CLK partner protein CYCLE (CYC) is on most of these sites. The CLK/CYC heterodimer is joined 4-6 hrs later by the transcriptional repressor PER, indicating that the majority of CLK targets are regulated similarly to core circadian genes (Menet et al. 2010). About 30% of target genes also show cycling Pol II binding. Many of these generate cycling RNAs despite not being documented in prior RNA cycling studies. This is due in part to different RNA isoforms and to fly head tissue heterogeneity. CLK has specific targets in different tissues, implying that important CLK partner proteins and/or mechanisms contribute to gene-specific and tissue-specific regulation. Overall design: 5 different datasets are included including: CLK ChIP-chip (samples collected at 6 timepoints, 2 replicates each, input and IP samples), PER ChIP-chip (samples collected at 6 timepoints, 2 replicates each, input and IP samples), RNA Pol II ChIP-chip (samples collected at 6 timepoints, 2 replicates each, input and IP samples), CYC-ChIP-chip (samples from ZT14, samples in triplicate, input and IP samples), GMR-hid CLK ChIP-chip (2 replicates at ZT14 of both WT and GMR-hid, input and IP samples). Total of 62 arrays
Project description:Little is known about the contribution of translational control to circadian rhythms. To address this issue and in particular translational control by microRNAs (miRNAs), we knocked down the miRNA biogenesis pathway in Drosophila circadian tissues. In combination with an increase in circadian-mediated transcription, this severely affected Drosophila behavioral rhythms, indicating that miRNAs function in circadian timekeeping. To identify miRNA–mRNA pairs important for this regulation, immunoprecipitation of AGO1 followed by microarray analysis identified mRNAs under miRNA-mediated control. They included three core clock mRNAs—clock (clk), vrille (vri), and clockworkorange (cwo). To identify miRNAs involved in circadian timekeeping, we exploited circadian cell-specific inhibition of the miRNA biogenesis pathway followed by tiling array analysis. This approach identified miRNAs expressed in fly head circadian tissue. Behavioral and molecular experiments show that one of these miRNAs, the developmental regulator bantam, has a role in the core circadian pacemaker. S2 cell biochemical experiments indicate that bantam regulates the translation of clk through an association with three target sites located within the clk 39 untranslated region (UTR). Moreover, clk transgenes harboring mutated bantam sites in their 39 UTRs rescue rhythms of clk mutant flies much less well than wild-type CLK transgenes. Ago IP immunoprecipitation was performed from fly heads collected at different circadian timpoints. For wild type samples 2 biological replicates were collected for each of the six analyzed timepoints from the head protein extract (INPUT) and AGO 1-immunoprecipitated samples (IP). Gene expression was analyzed from both samples by the use of oligonucleotide microarrays. The INPUT sample corresponding to ZT3 has only one replica.
Project description:Repeated exposure to cocaine causes sensitized behavioral responses and increased dendritic spines on medium spiny neurons of the nucleus accumbens (NAc). We find that cocaine regulates myocyte enhancer factor 2 (MEF2) transcription factors to control these two processes in vivo. Cocaine suppresses striatal MEF2 activity in part through a novel mechanism involving cAMP, the regulator of calmodulin signaling (RCS), and calcineurin. We show that reducing MEF2 activity in the NAc in vivo is required for the cocaine-induced increases in dendritic spine density. Surprisingly, we find that increasing MEF2 activity in the NAc, which blocks the cocaine-induced increase in dendritic spine density, enhances sensitized behavioral responses to cocaine. Together, our findings implicate MEF2 as a key regulator of structural synapse plasticity and sensitized responses to cocaine, and suggest that reducing MEF2 activity (and increasing spine density) in NAc may be a compensatory mechanism to limit long-lasting maladaptive behavioral responses to cocaine. Mice were treated for 7 days with daily injections of cocaine (20 mg/kg) and sacrificed 24 hrs later. Chromatin from bilateral punches of NAc was immunoprecipitated with an antibody against MEF2A as described previously with minor modifications (Renthal et al., 2007). Chromatin was sonicated to an average of ~500 bp and immunoprepitated with antibody against MEF2A (Santa Cruz, sc-313) or an IgG control (Upstate/Millipore). Antibody-bound chromatin was precipitated using Protein A beads from Upstate (06-157), which were washed with low salt, high salt, and LiCl buffers to remove non-specific DNA binding. Eluted chromatin was reverse-crosslinked at 65oC in the presence of proteinase K and EDTA. DNA was purified by chloroform extraction/ethanol precipitation and the enrichment of specific promoters was amplified by ligation-mediated PCR for genome-wide analysis (Sikder et al., 2006). Amplified DNA was then labeled with Cy3 (input-enriched) or Cy5 (MEF2-enriched) and hybridized to Nimblegen (Madison, WI) MM8 mouse promoter arrays. Bilateral nucleus accumbens from eight mice were pooled for microarray analysis.
Project description:CWO binding sites were genome-widely searched with Drosophila genome tiling array. Abstract: The Drosophila circadian clock consists of integrated autoregulatory feedback loops, making the clock difficult to elucidate without comprehensively identifying the network components in vivo. Previous studies have adopted genome-wide screening for clock-controlled genes using high-density oligonucleotide arrays that identified hundreds of clock-controlled genes. In an attempt to identify the core clock genes among these candidates, we applied genome-wide functional screening using an RNAi system in vivo. Here we report the identification of novel clock gene candidates including clockwork orange (cwo), a transcriptional repressor belonging to the basic helix-loop-helix-ORANGE family. cwo is rhythmically expressed and directly regulated by CLK-CYC through canonical E-box sequences. A genome-wide search for its target genes using the Drosophila genome tilling array revealed that cwo forms its own negative feedback loop and directly suppresses the expression of other clock genes through the E-box sequence. Furthermore, this negative transcriptional feedback loop contributes to sustaining a high-amplitude circadian oscillation in vivo. Based on these results, we propose that the competition between cyclic CLK-CYC activity and the adjustable threshold imposed by CWO keeps E-box-mediated transcription within the controllable range of its activity, thereby rendering a Drosophila circadian clock capable of generating high-amplitude oscillation. Keywords: ChIP-chip Overall design: 4 Drosophila genome tiling arrays were used as follows: Array1 Immunoprecipetated with anti-Flag antibody (Biological replicate no.1) for CWO binding signal Array2 Immunoprecipetated with anti-Flag antibody (Biological replicate no.2) for CWO binding signal Array3 Immunoprecipetated with anti-V5 antiboy (Biological replicate no.1) for background signal Array4 Immunoprecipetated with anti-V5 antiboy (Biological replicate no.2) for background signal
Project description:The mammalian circadian clock relies on the master genes CLOCK (CLK) and BMAL1 and drives rhythmic gene expression to regulate biological functions under circadian control. We recently uncovered a surprising disconnect between the rhythmic binding of CLK:BMAL1 on DNA and the transcription of its target genes, suggesting that they are regulated by as yet uncharacterized mechanisms. Here we show that rhythmic CLK:BMAL1 DNA binding promotes rhythmic chromatin opening. The underlying mechanisms include CLK:BMAL1 binding to nucleosomes and rhythmic chromatin modifications, including the incorporation of the histone variant H2A.Z. This rhythmic chromatin remodeling mediates the rhythmic binding of other transcription factors adjacent to CLK:BMAL1, suggesting that the activity and the tissue-specific expression of these other transcription factors contribute to the genome-wide CLK:BMAL1 heterogeneous transcriptional output. These data therefore indicate that the clock regulation of transcription relies on the rhythmic regulation of chromatin accessibility and suggest that the concept of pioneer function extends to acute gene regulation, well beyond the current confines of developmental/cell specification. Mouse liver CLK ChIP-Seq signal on Mnase-digested or sonicated chromatin, at 2 different time point (ZT22 and ZT06) from the same mice. Libraries were sequenced using Ilumina HiSeq2000. For Mnase-digested chromatin, libraries contained a mononucleosome insert (e.g., ~147bp), whereas the insert was ~150-300bp for sonicated chromatin.
Project description:Expression profiling in hippocampal neurons to identify genes upregulated in response to ectopic MEF2 activation by MEF2-VP16-ER; Experiments were conducted to identify activity-regulated MEF2 target genes. Experiment Overall Design: Neurons expressed either control MEF2deltaDBD-VP16-ER or MEF2-VP16-ER and expression profiling was conducted before and after 4-OH-Tamoxifen (4OHT) application.
Project description:The mammalian circadian clock relies on the master genes CLOCK (CLK) and BMAL1 and drives rhythmic gene expression to regulate biological functions under circadian control. We recently uncovered a surprising disconnect between the rhythmic binding of CLK:BMAL1 on DNA and the transcription of its target genes, suggesting that they are regulated by as yet uncharacterized mechanisms. Here we show that rhythmic CLK:BMAL1 DNA binding promotes rhythmic chromatin opening. The underlying mechanisms include CLK:BMAL1 binding to nucleosomes and rhythmic chromatin modifications, including the incorporation of the histone variant H2A.Z. This rhythmic chromatin remodeling mediates the rhythmic binding of other transcription factors adjacent to CLK:BMAL1, suggesting that the activity and the tissue-specific expression of these other transcription factors contribute to the genome-wide CLK:BMAL1 heterogeneous transcriptional output. These data therefore indicate that the clock regulation of transcription relies on the rhythmic regulation of chromatin accessibility and suggest that the concept of pioneer function extends to acute gene regulation, well beyond the current confines of developmental/cell specification. H2A.Z ChIP-Seq signal in the mouse liver over 6 time points of the 24h light:dark cycle, in wild-type and Bmal1-/- mice. Libraries containing a mononucleosome insert were sequenced using Ilumina HiSeq2000.
Project description:Expression profiling in hippocampal neurons to identify activity-regulated genes controlled by MEF2; Experiments were conducted to identify activity-regulated MEF2 target genes. Experiment Overall Design: Neurons were depolarized with 55mM extracellular KCl for one or six hours in the presence of control or MEF2-specific shRNAs
Project description:Testosterone production by Leydig cells is a tightly regulated process requiring synchronized expression of several steroidogenic genes by numerous transcription factors. Myocyte enhancer factor 2 (MEF2) is a transcription factor recently identified in somatic cells of the male gonad. In other tissues, MEF2 is an essential regulator of organogenesis and cell differentiation. So far in the testis, MEF2 was found to regulate Leydig cell steroidogenesis by controlling Nr4a1 and Star gene expression. To expand our understanding of the role of MEF2 in Leydig cells, we performed microarray analyses of MA-10 Leydig cells depleted in MEF2 and results were analyzed using the Partek and IPA softwares. Several genes were differentially expressed in MEF2-depleted Leydig cells and 15 were validated by qPCR. A large number of these genes are known to be involved in fertility, gonad morphology and steroidogenesis and include Pde8a, Por, Ahr, Bmal1, Cyp1a1, Cyp1b1, Map2k1, Tsc22d3, Nr0b2, Smad4, and Star, which were all downregulated in the absence of MEF2. In silico analyses revealed the presence of MEF2 binding sites within the first 2 kb upstream the transcription start site of the Por, Bmal1, and Nr0b2 promoters, which suggests a direct regulation by MEF2. Using transient transfections in MA-10 Leydig cells, siRNA knockdown, and a MEF2-Engrailed dominant negative, we found that MEF2 activates the Por, Bmal1 and Nr0b2 promoters and that this requires an intact MEF2 element. Our results identify novel target genes for MEF2 and define MEF2 as an important regulator of Leydig cell function and male reproduction. MA-10 Leydig cells were treated with siRNA MEF2A/2D (siRNA MEF2) or scrambled siRNA as control (siRNA Ctrl) 48h before total RNA extraction.