Domain-wide regulation of gene expression in the human genome.
ABSTRACT: Transcription factor complexes bind to regulatory sequences of genes, providing a system of individual expression regulation. Targets of distinct transcription factors usually map throughout the genome, without clustering. Nevertheless, highly and weakly expressed genes do cluster in separate chromosomal domains with an average size of 80-90 genes. We therefore asked whether, besides transcription factors, an additional level of gene expression regulation exists that acts on chromosomal domains. Here we show that identical green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter constructs integrated at 90 different chromosomal positions obtain expression levels that correspond to the activity of the domains of integration. These domains are up to 80 genes long and can exert an eightfold effect on the expression levels of integrated genes. 3D-FISH shows that active domains of integration have a more open chromatin structure than integration domains with weak activity. These results reveal a novel domain-wide regulatory mechanism that, together with transcription factors, exerts a dual control over gene transcription.
Project description:Transcription factor complexes bind to regulatory sequences of genes, providing a system of individual expression regulation. Targets of distinct transcription factors usually map throughout the genome, without clustering. Nevertheless, highly and weakly expressed genes do cluster in separate chromosomal domains with an average size of 80 to 90 genes. We therefore asked whether, besides transcription factors, an additional level of gene expression regulation exists that acts on chromosomal domains. Here we show that identical green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter constructs integrated at 90 different chromosomal positions determined by sequencing, obtain expression levels that correspond to the activity of the domains of integration. These domains are about 80 genes long and can exert an effect of up to 8-fold on the expression of integrated genes. 3D-FISH shows that active domains of integration have a more open chromatin structure than integration domains with weak activity. These results reveal a novel domain-wide regulatory mechanism that, together with transcription factors, exerts a dual control over gene transcription. See Gierman et al., 2007, Genome Research (DOI: 10.1101/gr.6276007). Experiment Overall Design: The experiment was performed in duplo, whereby HEK293 cells were grown under standard conditions and RNA was isolated, labelled and hybridized separately. Data from the duplicate arraying experiment were then averaged and further analyzed.
Project description:We have investigated regulatory sequences in noncoding human DNA that are associated with repression of an integrated human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) promoter. HIV-1 integration results in the formation of precise and homogeneous junctions between viral and host DNA, but integration takes place at many locations. Thus, the variation in HIV-1 gene expression at different integration sites reports the activity of regulatory sequences at nearby chromosomal positions. Negative regulation of HIV transcription is of particular interest because of its association with maintaining HIV in a latent state in cells from infected patients. To identify chromosomal regulators of HIV transcription, we infected Jurkat T cells with an HIV-based vector transducing green fluorescent protein (GFP) and separated cells into populations containing well-expressed (GFP-positive) or poorly expressed (GFP-negative) proviruses. We then determined the chromosomal locations of the two classes by sequencing 971 junctions between viral and cellular DNA. Possible effects of endogenous cellular transcription were characterized by transcriptional profiling. Low-level GFP expression correlated with integration in (i) gene deserts, (ii) centromeric heterochromatin, and (iii) very highly expressed cellular genes. These data provide a genome-wide picture of chromosomal features that repress transcription and suggest models for transcriptional latency in cells from HIV-infected patients.
Project description:The Gram-negative bacterium Escherichia coli is routinely used as the chassis for a variety of biotechnology and synthetic biology applications. Identification and analysis of reliable chromosomal integration and expression target loci is crucial for E.?coli engineering. Chromosomal loci differ significantly in their ability to support integration and expression of the integrated genetic circuits. In this study, we investigate E.?coli K12 MG1655 flagellar regions 2 and 3b. Integration of the genetic circuit into seven and nine highly conserved genes of the flagellar regions 2 (motA, motB, flhD, flhE, cheW, cheY and cheZ) and 3b (fliE, F, G, J, K, L, M, P, R), respectively, showed significant variation in their ability to support chromosomal integration and expression of the integrated genetic circuit. While not reducing the growth of the engineered strains, the integrations into all 16 target sites led to the loss of motility. In addition to high expression, the flagellar region 3b supports the highest efficiency of integration of all E.?coli?K12 MG1655 flagellar regions and is therefore potentially the most suitable for the integration of synthetic genetic circuits.
Project description:Lactobacillus casei is a potential cell factory for the production of enzymes and bioactive molecules using episomal plasmids, which suffer from genetic instability. While chromosomal integration strategies can provide genetic stability of recombinant proteins, low expression yields limit their application. To address this problem, we developed a two-step integration strategy in Lb. casei by combination of the LCABL_13040-50-60 recombineering system (comprised of LCABL_1340, LCABL_13050, and LCABL_13060) with the Cre/loxP site-specific recombination system, with an efficiency of ?3.7?×?103 CFU/µg DNA. A gfp gene was successfully integrated into six selected chromosomal sites, and the relative fluorescence intensities (RFUs) of the resulting integrants varied up to ?3.7-fold depending on the integrated site, among which the LCABL_07270 site gfp integration showed the highest RFU. However, integrants with gfp gene(s) integrated into the LCABL_07270 site showed various RFUs, ranging from 993?±?89 to 7,289?±?564 and corresponding to 1 to 13.68?±?1.08 copies of gfp gene integration. Moreover, the integrant with 13.68?±?1.08 copies of the gfp gene had a more stable RFU after 63 generations compared to that of a plasmid-engineered strain. To investigate the feasibility of this system for bioactive molecules with high expression levels, the fimbrial adhesin gene, faeG, from Escherichia coli was tested and successfully integrated into the LCABL_07270 site with 5.51?±?0.25 copies, and the integrated faeG achieved stable expression. All results demonstrate that this two-step integration system could achieve a high yield of heterologous gene expression by repetitive integration at a targeted chromosomal location in Lb. casei IMPORTANCE Lactic acid bacteria (LAB), including Lactobacillus casei, have the potential for overexpression of heterologous proteins, such as bioactive molecules and enzymes. However, traditional genetic tools for expression of these proteins show genetic instability or low yields of the desired product. In this study, we provide a procedure for repetitive integration of genes at various chromosomal locations, achieving high-level and stable expression of proteins in Lb. casei without selective pressure. The protocol developed in this study provides an essential reference for chromosomal overexpression of proteins or bioactive molecules in LAB.
Project description:Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is an uncommon, lethal cancer of the skin caused by either Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) or UV-linked mutations. MCPyV is found integrated into MCC tumor genomes, accompanied by truncation mutations that render the MCPyV large T antigen replication incompetent. We used the open access HPV Detector/Cancer-virus Detector tool to determine MCPyV integration sites in whole-exome sequencing data from five MCC cases, thereby adding to the limited published MCPyV integration site junction data. We also systematically reviewed published data on integration for MCPyV in the human genome, presenting a collation of 123 MCC cases and their linked chromosomal sites. We confirmed that there were no highly recurrent specific sites of integration. We found that chromosome 5 was most frequently involved in MCPyV integration and that integration sites were significantly enriched for genes with binding sites for oncogenic transcription factors such as LEF1 and ZEB1, suggesting the possibility of increased open chromatin in these gene sets. Additionally, in one case we found, for the first time, integration involving the tumor suppressor gene KMT2D, adding to previous reports of rare MCPyV integration into host tumor suppressor genes in MCC.
Project description:Integrating vectors can lead to the dysregulation of nearby chromosomal genes, with important consequences for clinical trials and cellular engineering. This includes the retroviral and lentiviral vectors commonly used for deriving induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). We previously used integrating foamy virus (FV) vectors expressing OCT4, SOX2, MYC and KLF4 to reprogram osteogenesis imperfecta mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Here, we have studied the effects of 10 FV vector proviruses on neighboring gene expression in four iPSC lines and their corresponding iPSC-derived MSC (iMSCs). Gene expression profiles in these iPSC lines showed that none of the 38 genes within 300?kb up- or downstream of integrated proviruses had a significant difference in mRNA levels, including five genes with proviruses in their transcription units. In the iMSCs derived from these iPSCs, the same type of analysis showed a single dysregulated transcript out of 46 genes found near proviruses. This frequency of dysregulation was similar to that of genes lacking nearby proviruses, so it may have been due to interclonal variation and/or measurement inaccuracies. While the number of integration sites examined in this paper is limited, our results suggest that integrated FV proviruses do not impact the expression of chromosomal genes in pluripotent human stem cells or their differentiated derivatives. This interpretation is consistent with previous reports that FV vectors have minimal genotoxicity, even when integrating near or within genes.
Project description:The embryonic basal ganglia generates multiple projection neurons and interneuron subtypes from distinct progenitor domains. Combinatorial interactions of transcription factors and chromatin are thought to regulate gene expression. In the medial ganglionic eminence, the NKX2-1 transcription factor controls regional identity and, with LHX6, is necessary to specify pallidal projection neurons and forebrain interneurons. Here, we dissected the molecular functions of NKX2-1 by defining its chromosomal binding, regulation of gene expression, and epigenetic state. NKX2-1 binding at distal regulatory elements led to a repressed epigenetic state and transcriptional repression in the ventricular zone. Conversely, NKX2-1 is required to establish a permissive chromatin state and transcriptional activation in the sub-ventricular and mantle zones. Moreover, combinatorial binding of NKX2-1 and LHX6 promotes transcriptionally permissive chromatin and activates genes expressed in cortical migrating interneurons. Our integrated approach provides a foundation for elucidating transcriptional networks guiding the development of the MGE and its descendants.
Project description:Derivation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells requires the expression of defined transcription factors (among Oct3/4, Sox2, Klf4, c-Myc, Nanog, and Lin28) in the targeted cells. Lentiviral or standard retroviral gene transfer remains the most robust and commonly used approach. Low reprogramming frequency overall, and the higher efficiency of derivation utilizing integrating vectors compared to more recent nonviral approaches, suggests that gene activation or disruption via proviral integration sites (IS) may play a role in obtaining the pluripotent phenotype. We provide for the first time an extensive analysis of the lentiviral integration profile in human iPS cells. We identified a total of 78 independent IS in eight recently established iPS cell lines derived from either human fetal fibroblasts or newborn foreskin fibroblasts after lentiviral gene transfer of Oct4, Sox2, Nanog, and Lin28. The number of IS ranged from 5 to 15 IS per individual iPS clone, and 75 IS could be assigned to a unique chromosomal location. The different iPS clones had no IS in common. Expression analysis as well as extensive bioinformatic analysis did not reveal functional concordance of the lentiviral targeted genes between the different clones. Interestingly, in six of the eight iPS clones, some of the IS were found in pairs, integrated into the same chromosomal location within six base pairs of each other or in very close proximity. Our study supports recent reports that efficient reprogramming of human somatic cells is not dependent on insertional activation or deactivation of specific genes or gene classes.
Project description:The recent expansion of genetic and genomic tools for metabolic engineering has accelerated the development of microorganisms for the industrial production of desired compounds. We have used transposable elements to identify chromosomal locations in the obligate methanotroph Methylomonas sp. strain 16a that support high-level expression of genes involved in the synthesis of the C(40) carotenoids canthaxanthin and astaxanthin. with three promoterless carotenoid transposons, five chromosomal locations-the fliCS, hsdM, ccp-3, cysH, and nirS regions-were identified. Total carotenoid synthesis increased 10- to 20-fold when the carotenoid gene clusters were inserted at these chromosomal locations compared to when the same carotenoid gene clusters were integrated at neutral locations under the control of the promoter for the gene conferring resistance to chloramphenicol. A chromosomal integration system based on sucrose lethality was used to make targeted gene deletions or site-specific integration of the carotenoid gene cluster into the Methylomonas genome without leaving genetic scars in the chromosome from the antibiotic resistance genes that are present on the integration vector. The genetic approaches described in this work demonstrate how metabolic engineering of microorganisms, including the less-studied environmental isolates, can be greatly enhanced by identifying integration sites within the chromosome of the host that permit optimal expression of the target genes.
Project description:For a better understanding of the consequences of recurrent chromosomal alterations in cervical carcinomas, we integrated genome-wide chromosomal and transcriptional profiles of 10 squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs), 5 adenocarcinomas (AdCAs) and 6 normal controls. Previous genomic profiling showed that gains at chromosome arms 1q, 3q, and 20q as well as losses at 8q, 10q, 11q, and 13q were common in cervical carcinomas. Altered regions spanned multiple megabases, and the extent to which expression of genes located there is affected remains unclear. Expression analysis of these previously chromosomally profiled carcinomas yielded 83 genes with significantly differential expression between carcinomas and normal epithelium. Application of differential gene locus mapping (DIGMAP) analysis and the array CGH expression integration tool (ACE-it) identified hotspots within large chromosomal alterations in which gene expression was altered as well. Chromosomal gains of the long arms of chromosome 1, 3, and 20 resulted in increased expression of genes located at 1q32.1-32.2, 3q13.32-23, 3q26.32-27.3, and 20q11.21-13.33, whereas a chromosomal loss of 11q22.3-25 was related to decreased expression of genes located in this region. Overexpression of DTX3L, PIK3R4, ATP2C1, and SLC25A36, all located at 3q21.1-23 and identified by DIGMAP, ACE-it or both, was confirmed in an independent validation sample set consisting of 12 SCCs and 13 normal ectocervical samples. In conclusion, integrated chromosomal and transcriptional profiling identified chromosomal hotspots at 1q, 3q, 11q, and 20q with altered gene expression within large commonly altered chromosomal regions in cervical cancer.