DNA methyltransferase 3b preferentially associates with condensed chromatin.
ABSTRACT: In mammals, DNA methylation is catalyzed by DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) encoded by Dnmt1, Dnmt3a and Dnmt3b. Since, the mechanisms of regulation of Dnmts are still largely unknown, the physical interaction between Dnmt3b and chromatin was investigated in vivo and in vitro. In embryonic stem cell nuclei, Dnmt3b preferentially associated with histone H1-containing heterochromatin without any significant enrichment of silent-specific histone methylation. Recombinant Dnmt3b preferentially associated with nucleosomal DNA rather than naked DNA. Incorporation of histone H1 into nucleosomal arrays promoted the association of Dnmt3b with chromatin, whereas histone acetylation reduced Dnmt3b binding in vitro. In addition, Dnmt3b associated with histone deacetylase SirT1 in the nuclease resistant chromatin. These findings suggest that Dnmt3b is preferentially recruited into hypoacetylated and condensed chromatin. We propose that Dnmt3b is a 'reader' of higher-order chromatin structure leading to gene silencing through DNA methylation.
Project description:Epigenetic silencing in mammals involves DNA methylation and posttranslational modifications of core histones. Here we show that the H1 linker histone plays a key role in regulating both DNA methylation and histone H3 methylation at the H19 and Gtl2 loci in mouse ES cells. Some, but not all, murine H1 subtypes interact with DNA methyltransferases DNMT1 and DNMT3B. The interactions are direct and require a portion of the H1 C-terminal domain. Expression of an H1 subtype that interacts with DNMT1 and DNMT3B in ES cells leads to their recruitment and DNA methylation of the H19 and Gtl2 imprinting control regions. H1 also interferes with binding of the SET7/9 histone methyltransferase to the imprinting control regions, inhibiting production of an activating methylation mark on histone H3 lysine 4. H1-dependent recruitment of DNMT1 and DNMT3B and interference with the binding of SET7/9 also were observed with chromatin reconstituted in vitro. The data support a model in which H1 plays an active role in helping direct two processes that lead to the formation of epigenetic silencing marks. The data also provide evidence for functional differences among the H1 subtypes expressed in somatic mammalian cells.
Project description:LSH, a protein related to the SNF2 family of chromatin-remodeling ATPases, is required for efficient DNA methylation in mammals. How LSH functions to support DNA methylation and whether it associates with a large protein complex containing DNA methyltransferase (DNMT) enzymes is currently unclear. Here we show that, unlike many other chromatin-remodeling ATPases, native LSH is present mostly as a monomeric protein in nuclear extracts of mammalian cells and cannot be detected in a large multisubunit complex. However, when targeted to a promoter of a reporter gene, LSH acts as an efficient transcriptional repressor. Using this as an assay to identify proteins that are required for LSH-mediated repression we found that LSH cooperates with the DNMTs DNMT1 and DNMT3B and with the histone deacetylases (HDACs) HDAC1 and HDAC2 to silence transcription. We show that transcriptional repression by LSH and interactions with HDACs are lost in DNMT1 and DNMT3B knockout cells but that the enzymatic activities of DNMTs are not required for LSH-mediated silencing. Our data suggest that LSH serves as a recruiting factor for DNMTs and HDACs to establish transcriptionally repressive chromatin which is perhaps further stabilized by DNA methylation at targeted loci.
Project description:We have previously demonstrated that the expression of human ribosomal RNA genes (rDNA) in normal and cancer cells is differentially regulated by methylation of the promoter CpG islands. Furthermore, we showed that the methyl CpG-binding protein MBD2 plays a selective role in the methylation-mediated block in rDNA expression. Here, we analyzed the role of three functional mammalian DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) in regulating the rDNA promoters activity. Immunofluorescence analysis and biochemical fractionation showed that all three DNMTs (DNMT1, DNMT3A, and DNMT3B) are associated with the inactive rDNA in the nucleolus. Although DNMTs associate with both methylated and unmethylated rDNA promoters, DNMT1 preferentially associates with the methylated genes. The rDNA primary transcript level was significantly elevated in DNMT1-/- or DNMT3B-/- human colon carcinoma (HCT116) cells. Southern blot analysis demonstrated a moderate level of rDNA promoter hypomethylation in DNMT1-/- cells and a dramatic loss of rDNA promoter methylation in double knockout cells. Transient overexpression of DNMT1 or DNMT3B suppressed the luciferase expression from both methylated and unmethylated pHrD-IRES-Luc, a reporter plasmid where the rDNA promoter drives luciferase expression. DNMT1-mediated suppression of the unmethylated promoter involves de novo methylation of the promoter, whereas histone deacetylase 2 cooperates with DNMT1 to inhibit the methylated rDNA promoter. Unlike DNMT1, both the wild type and catalytically inactive DNMT3B mutant can suppress rDNA promoter irrespective of its methylation status. DNMT3B-mediated suppression of the rDNA promoter also involves histone deacetylation. Treatment of HCT116 cells with Decitabine (a DNMT inhibitor) or trichostatin A (a histone deacetylase inhibitor) up-regulated endogenous rDNA expression. These inhibitors synergistically activated methylated pHrD-IRES-Luc, whereas they exhibited additive effects on the unmethylated promoter. These results demonstrate localization of DNMTs with the inactive rDNA in the nucleolus, the specific role of DNMT1 and DNMT3B in rDNA expression and the differential regulation of rDNA expression from the methylated and unmethylated rDNA promoters.
Project description:DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) deposit DNA methylation, which regulates gene expression and is essential for mammalian development. Histone post-translational modifications modulate the recruitment and activity of DNMTs. The PWWP domains of DNMT3A and DNMT3B are posited to interact with histone 3 lysine 36 trimethylation (H3K36me3); however, the functionality of this interaction for DNMT3A remains untested in vivo. Here we present a mouse model carrying a D329A point mutation in the DNMT3A PWWP domain. The mutation causes dominant postnatal growth retardation. At the molecular level, it results in progressive DNA hypermethylation across domains marked by H3K27me3 and bivalent chromatin, and de-repression of developmental regulatory genes in adult hypothalamus. Evaluation of non-CpG methylation, a marker of de novo methylation, further demonstrates the altered recruitment and activity of DNMT3A<sup>D329A</sup> at bivalent domains. This work provides key molecular insights into the function of the DNMT3A-PWWP domain and role of DNMT3A in regulating postnatal growth.
Project description:Chromatin architectural proteins (CAPs) bind the entry/exit DNA of nucleosomes and linker DNA to form higher order chromatin structures with distinct transcriptional outcomes. How CAPs mediate nucleosome dynamics is not well understood. We hypothesize that CAPs regulate DNA target site accessibility through alteration of the rate of spontaneous dissociation of DNA from nucleosomes. We investigated the effects of histone H1, high mobility group D1 (HMGD1), and methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2), on the biophysical properties of nucleosomes and chromatin. We show that MeCP2, like the repressive histone H1, traps the nucleosome in a more compact mononucleosome structure. Furthermore, histone H1 and MeCP2 hinder model transcription factor Gal4 from binding to its cognate DNA site within the nucleosomal DNA. These results demonstrate that MeCP2 behaves like a repressor even in the absence of methylation. Additionally, MeCP2 behaves similarly to histone H1 and HMGD1 in creating a higher-order chromatin structure, which is susceptible to chromatin remodeling by ISWI. Overall, we show that CAP binding results in unique changes to nucleosome structure and dynamics.
Project description:Rat liver telomeric DNA is organised into nucleosomes characterised by a shorter and more homogeneous average nucleosomal repeat than bulk chromatin as shown by Makarov et al. (1). The latter authors were unable to detect the association of any linker histone with the telomeric DNA. We have confirmed these observations but show that in sharp contrast chicken erythrocyte telomeric DNA is organised into nucleosomes whose spacing length and heterogeneity are indistinguishable from those of bulk chromatin. We further show that chicken erythrocyte telomeric chromatin contains chromatosomes which are preferentially associated with histone H1 relative to histone H5. This contrasts with bulk chromatin where histone H5 is the more abundant species. This observation strongly suggests that telomeric DNA condensed into nucleosome core particles has a higher affinity for H1 than H5. We discuss the origin of the discrimination of the lysine rich histones in terms of DNA sequence preferences, telomere nucleosome preferences and particular constraints of the higher order chromatin structure of telomeres.
Project description:DNA methylation patterns are established and maintained by three DNA methyltransferases (DNMT): DNMT1, DNMT3A, and DNMT3B. Although essential for development, methylation patterns are frequently disrupted in cancer and contribute directly to carcinogenesis. Recent studies linking polycomb group repression complexes (PRC1 and PRC2) to the DNMTs have begun to shed light on how methylation is targeted. We identified previously a panel of genes regulated by DNMT3B. Here, we compare these with known polycomb group targets to show that approximately 47% of DNMT3B regulated genes are also bound by PRC1 or PRC2. We chose 44 genes coregulated by DNMT3B and PRC1/PRC2 to test whether these criteria would accurately identify novel targets of epigenetic silencing in colon cancer. Using reverse transcription-PCR, bisulfite genomic sequencing, and pyrosequencing, we show that the majority of these genes are frequently silenced in colorectal cancer cell lines and primary tumors. Some of these, including HAND1, HMX2, and SIX3, repressed cell growth. Finally, we analyzed the histone code, DNMT1, DNMT3B, and PRC2 binding by chromatin immunoprecipitation at epigenetically silenced genes to reveal a novel link between DNMT3B and the mark mediated by PRC1. Taken together, these studies suggest that patterns of epigenetic modifiers and the histone code influence the propensity of a gene to become hypermethylated in cancer and that DNMT3B plays an important role in regulating PRC1 function.
Project description:As part of the epigenetic network, DNA methylation is a major regulator of chromatin structure and function. In mammals, it mainly occurs at palindromic CpG sites, but asymmetric methylation at non-CpG sites is also observed. Three enzymes are involved in the generation and maintenance of DNA methylation patterns. DNMT1 has high preference for hemimethylated CpG sites, and DNMT3A and DNMT3B equally methylate unmethylated and hemimethylated DNA, and also introduce non-CpG methylation. Here, we review recent observations and novel insights into the structure and function of mammalian DNMTs (DNA methyltransferases), including new structures of DNMT1 and DNMT3A, data on their mechanism, regulation by post-translational modifications and on the function of DNMTs in cells. In addition, we present news findings regarding the allosteric regulation and targeting of DNMTs by chromatin modifications and chromatin proteins. In combination, the recent publications summarized here impressively illustrate the intensity of ongoing research in this field. They provide a deeper understanding of key mechanistic properties of DNMTs, but they also document still unsolved issues, which need to be addressed in future research.
Project description:In this work we have studied the effect of chromatin structure on the base excision repair (BER) efficiency of 8-oxoG. As a model system we have used precisely positioned dinucleosomes assembled with linker histone H1. A single 8-oxoG was inserted either in the linker or the core particle DNA within the dinucleosomal template. We found that in the absence of histone H1 the glycosylase OGG1 removed 8-oxoG from the linker DNA and cleaved DNA with identical efficiency as in the naked DNA. In contrast, the presence of histone H1 resulted in close to 10-fold decrease in the efficiency of 8-oxoG initiation of repair in linker DNA independently of linker DNA length. The repair of 8-oxoG in nucleosomal DNA was very highly impeded in both absence and presence of histone H1. Chaperone-induced uptake of H1 restored the efficiency of the glycosylase induced removal of 8-oxoG from linker DNA, but not from the nucleosomal DNA. We show, however, that removal of histone H1 and nucleosome remodelling are both necessary and sufficient for an efficient removal of 8-oxoG in nucleosomal DNA. Finally, a model for BER of 8-oxoG in chromatin templates is suggested.
Project description:DNA methyltransferases (Dnmts) mediate the epigenetic modification of eukaryotic genomes. Mammalian DNA methylation patterns are established and maintained by co-operative interactions among the Dnmt proteins Dnmt1, Dnmt3a and Dnmt3b. Owing to their simultaneous presence in mammalian cells, the activities of individual Dnmt have not yet been determined. This includes a fourth putative Dnmt, namely Dnmt2, which has failed to reveal any activity in previous assays. We have now established transgenic Drosophila strains that allow for individual overexpression of all known mouse Dnmts. Quantitative analysis of genomic cytosine methylation levels demonstrated a robust Dnmt activity for the de novo methyltransferases Dnmt3a and Dnmt3b. In addition, we also detected a weak but significant activity for Dnmt2. Subsequent methylation tract analysis by genomic bisulphite sequencing revealed that Dnmt3 enzymes preferentially methylated CpG dinucleotides in a processive manner, whereas Dnmt2 methylated isolated cytosine residues in a non-CpG dinucleotide context. Our results allow a direct comparison of the activities of mammalian Dnmts and suggest a significant functional specialization of these enzymes.