Histone H4 K16Q mutation, an acetylation mimic, causes structural disorder of its N-terminal basic patch in the nucleosome.
ABSTRACT: Histone tails and their posttranslational modifications play important roles in regulating the structure and dynamics of chromatin. For histone H4, the basic patch K(16)R(17)H(18)R(19) in the N-terminal tail modulates chromatin compaction and nucleosome sliding catalyzed by ATP-dependent ISWI chromatin remodeling enzymes while acetylation of H4 K16 affects both functions. The structural basis for the effects of this acetylation is unknown. Here, we investigated the conformation of histone tails in the nucleosome by solution NMR. We found that backbone amides of the N-terminal tails of histones H2A, H2B, and H3 are largely observable due to their conformational disorder. However, only residues 1-15 in H4 can be detected, indicating that residues 16-22 in the tails of both H4 histones fold onto the nucleosome core. Surprisingly, we found that K16Q mutation in H4, a mimic of K16 acetylation, leads to a structural disorder of the basic patch. Thus, our study suggests that the folded structure of the H4 basic patch in the nucleosome is important for chromatin compaction and nucleosome remodeling by ISWI enzymes while K16 acetylation affects both functions by causing structural disorder of the basic patch K(16)R(17)H(18)R(19).
Project description:ISWI is the catalytic subunit of several ATP-dependent chromatin remodelling factors that catalyse the sliding of nucleosomes along DNA and thereby endow chromatin with structural flexibility. Full activity of ISWI requires residues of a basic patch of amino acids in the N-terminal 'tail' of histone H4. Previous studies employing oligopeptides and mononucleosomes suggested that acetylation of the H4 tail at lysine 16 (H4K16) within the basic patch may inhibit the activity of ISWI. On the other hand, the acetylation of H4K16 is known to decompact chromatin fibres. Conceivably, decompaction may enhance the accessibility of nucleosomal DNA and the H4 tail for ISWI interactions. Such an effect can only be evaluated at the level of nucleosome arrays. We probed the influence of H4K16 acetylation on the ATPase and nucleosome sliding activity of Drosophila ISWI in the context of defined, in vitro reconstituted chromatin fibres with physiological nucleosome spacing and linker histone content. Contrary to widespread expectations, the acetylation did not inhibit ISWI activity, but rather stimulated ISWI remodelling under certain conditions. Therefore, the effect of H4K16 acetylation on ISWI remodelling depends on the precise nature of the substrate.
Project description:The ATPase ISWI is the catalytic core of several nucleosome remodeling complexes, which are able to alter histone-DNA interactions within nucleosomes such that the sliding of histone octamers on DNA is facilitated. Dynamic nucleosome repositioning may be involved in the assembly of chromatin with regularly spaced nucleosomes and accessible regulatory sequence elements. The mechanism that underlies nucleosome sliding is largely unresolved. We recently discovered that the N-terminal 'tail' of histone H4 is critical for nucleosome remodeling by ISWI. If deleted, nucleosomes are no longer recognized as substrates and do not stimulate the ATPase activity of ISWI. We show here that the H4 tail is part of a more complex recognition epitope which is destroyed by grafting the H4 N-terminus onto other histones. We mapped the H4 tail requirement to a hydrophilic patch consisting of the amino acids R17H18R19 localized at the base of the tail. These residues have been shown earlier to contact nucleosomal DNA, suggesting that ISWI recognizes an 'epitope' consisting of the DNA-bound H4 tail. Consistent with this hypothesis, the ISWI ATPase is stimulated by isolated H4 tail peptides ISWI only in the presence of DNA. Acetylation of the adjacent K12 and K16 residues impairs substrate recognition by ISWI.
Project description:The nucleosome core particle (NCP) is the basic building block of chromatin. Nucleosome-nucleosome interactions are instrumental in chromatin compaction, and understanding NCP self-assembly is important for understanding chromatin structure and dynamics. Recombinant NCPs aggregated by multivalent cations form various ordered phases that can be studied by x-ray diffraction (small-angle x-ray scattering). In this work, the effects on the supramolecular structure of aggregated NCPs due to lysine histone H4 tail acetylations, histone H2A mutations (neutralizing the acidic patch of the histone octamer), and the removal of histone tails were investigated. The formation of ordered mainly hexagonal columnar NCP phases is in agreement with earlier studies; however, the highly homogeneous recombinant NCP systems used in this work display a more compact packing. The long-range order of the NCP columnar phase was found to be abolished or reduced by acetylation of the H4 tails, acidic patch neutralization, and removal of the H3 and H2B tails. Loss of nucleosome stacking upon removal of the H3 tails in combination with other tails was observed. In the absence of the H2A tails, the formation of an unknown highly ordered phase was observed.
Project description:The mechanism by which chromatin is decondensed to permit access to DNA is largely unknown. Here, using a model nucleosome array reconstituted from recombinant histone octamers, we have defined the relative contribution of the individual histone octamer N-terminal tails as well as the effect of a targeted histone tail acetylation on the compaction state of the 30 nm chromatin fiber. This study goes beyond previous studies as it is based on a nucleosome array that is very long (61 nucleosomes) and contains a stoichiometric concentration of bound linker histone, which is essential for the formation of the 30 nm chromatin fiber. We find that compaction is regulated in two steps: Introduction of H4 acetylated to 30% on K16 inhibits compaction to a greater degree than deletion of the H4 N-terminal tail. Further decompaction is achieved by removal of the linker histone.
Project description:Understanding the molecular mechanisms behind regulation of chromatin folding through covalent modifications of the histone N-terminal tails is hampered by a lack of accessible chromatin containing precisely modified histones. We study the internal folding and intermolecular self-association of a chromatin system consisting of saturated 12-mer nucleosome arrays containing various combinations of completely acetylated lysines at positions 5, 8, 12 and 16 of histone H4, induced by the cations Na(+), K(+), Mg(2+), Ca(2+), cobalt-hexammine(3+), spermidine(3+) and spermine(4+). Histones were prepared using a novel semi-synthetic approach with native chemical ligation. Acetylation of H4-K16, but not its glutamine mutation, drastically reduces cation-induced folding of the array. Neither acetylations nor mutations of all the sites K5, K8 and K12 can induce a similar degree of array unfolding. The ubiquitous K(+), (as well as Rb(+) and Cs(+)) showed an unfolding effect on unmodified arrays almost similar to that of H4-K16 acetylation. We propose that K(+) (and Rb(+)/Cs(+)) binding to a site on the H2B histone (R96-L99) disrupts H4K16 ε-amino group binding to this specific site, thereby deranging H4 tail-mediated nucleosome-nucleosome stacking and that a similar mechanism operates in the case of H4-K16 acetylation. Inter-array self-association follows electrostatic behavior and is largely insensitive to the position or nature of the H4 tail charge modification.
Project description:The N-terminal tail of histone H4 is an indispensable mediator for inter-nucleosome interaction, which is required for chromatin fiber condensation. H4K16 acetylation (H4K16Ac) activates gene transcription by influencing both chromatin structure and interplay with nonhistone proteins. To understand the influence of H4K16Ac on inter-nucleosome interaction, we performed a simulation study for the H4 tail in the context of two nucleosomes in neighboring unit cells in the crystal structure. The binding conformation of H4 tail with/without K16Ac was sampled by replica exchange with solute tempering, and the free energy landscape was explored by metadynamics. The results indicate two important features of H4K16: 1) it is the first button to anchor the H4 tail on the adjacent nucleosome; and 2) it is the only acetylation site interacting with the acidic patch. H4K16Ac disrupts the electrostatic interactions of K16, weakens H4 tail-acidic patch binding, and significantly increases H4 tail conformation diversity. Our study suggests that H4K16Ac directly reduces the inter-nucleosome interaction mediated by the H4 tail, which might further encourage the binding of nonhistone proteins on the acidic patch.
Project description:Chromatin-remodelling complexes (CRCs) mobilize nucleosomes to mediate the access of DNA-binding factors to their sites in vivo. These CRCs contain a catalytic subunit that bears an ATPase/DNA-translocase domain and flanking regions that bind nucleosomal epitopes. A central question is whether and how these flanking regions regulate ATP hydrolysis or the coupling of hydrolysis to DNA translocation, to affect nucleosome-sliding efficiency. ISWI-family CRCs contain the protein ISWI, which uses its ATPase/DNA-translocase domain to pump DNA around the histone octamer to enable sliding. ISWI is positively regulated by two 'activating' nucleosomal epitopes: the 'basic patch' on the histone H4 tail, and extranucleosomal (linker) DNA. Previous work defined the HAND-SANT-SLIDE (HSS) domain at the ISWI carboxy terminus that binds linker DNA, needed for ISWI activity. Here we define two new, conserved and separate regulatory regions on Drosophila ISWI, termed AutoN and NegC, which negatively regulate ATP hydrolysis (AutoN) or the coupling of ATP hydrolysis to productive DNA translocation (NegC). The two aforementioned nucleosomal epitopes promote remodelling indirectly by preventing the negative regulation of AutoN and NegC. Notably, mutation or removal of AutoN and NegC enables marked nucleosome sliding without the H4 basic patch or extranucleosomal DNA, or the HSS domain, conferring on ISWI the biochemical attributes normally associated with SWI/SNF-family ATPases. Thus, the ISWI ATPase catalytic core is an intrinsically active DNA translocase that conducts nucleosome sliding, onto which selective 'inhibition-of-inhibition' modules are placed, to help ensure that remodelling occurs only in the presence of proper nucleosomal epitopes. This supports a general concept for the specialization of chromatin-remodelling ATPases, in which specific regulatory modules adapt an ancient active DNA translocase to conduct particular tasks only on the appropriate chromatin landscape.
Project description:Higher order folding of chromatin fibre is mediated by interactions of the histone H4 N-terminal tail domains with neighbouring nucleosomes. Mechanistically, the H4 tails of one nucleosome bind to the acidic patch region on the surface of adjacent nucleosomes, causing fibre compaction. The functionality of the chromatin fibre can be modified by proteins that interact with the nucleosome. The co-structures of five different proteins with the nucleosome (LANA, IL-33, RCC1, Sir3 and HMGN2) recently have been examined by experimental and computational studies. Interestingly, each of these proteins displays steric, ionic and hydrogen bond complementarity with the acidic patch, and therefore will compete with each other for binding to the nucleosome. We first review the molecular details of each interface, focusing on the key non-covalent interactions that stabilize the protein-acidic patch interactions. We then propose a model in which binding of proteins to the nucleosome disrupts interaction of the H4 tail domains with the acidic patch, preventing the intrinsic chromatin folding pathway and leading to assembly of alternative higher order chromatin structures with unique biological functions.
Project description:Recent studies have implicated the nucleosome acidic patch in the activity of ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling machines. We used a photocrosslinking-based nucleosome profiling technology (photoscanning) to identify a conserved basic motif within the catalytic subunit of ISWI remodelers, SNF2h, which engages this nucleosomal epitope. This region of SNF2h is essential for chromatin remodeling activity in a reconstituted biochemical system and in cells. Our studies suggest that the basic motif in SNF2h plays a critical role in anchoring the remodeler to the nucleosomal surface. We also examine the functional consequences of several cancer-associated histone mutations that map to the nucleosome acidic patch. Kinetic studies using physiologically relevant heterotypic nucleosomal substrates ('Janus' nucleosomes) indicate that these cancer-associated mutations can disrupt regularly spaced chromatin structure by inducing ISWI-mediated unidirectional nucleosome sliding. These results indicate a potential mechanistic link between oncogenic histones and alterations to the chromatin landscape.
Project description:Post-translational modifications (PTMs) of histones, such as lysine acetylation of the N-terminal tails, play crucial roles in controlling gene expression. Due to the difficulty in reconstituting site-specifically acetylated nucleosomes with crystallization quality, structural analyses of histone acetylation are currently performed using synthesized tail peptides. Through engineering of the genetic code, translation termination, and cell-free protein synthesis, we reconstituted human H4-mono- to tetra-acetylated nucleosome core particles (NCPs), and solved the crystal structures of the H4-K5/K8/K12/K16-tetra-acetylated NCP and unmodified NCP at 2.4 Å and 2.2 Å resolutions, respectively. The structure of the H4-tetra-acetylated NCP resembled that of the unmodified NCP, and the DNA wrapped the histone octamer as precisely as in the unmodified NCP. However, the B-factors were significantly increased for the peripheral DNAs near the N-terminal tail of the intra- or inter-nucleosomal H4. In contrast, the B-factors were negligibly affected by the H4 tetra-acetylation in histone core residues, including those composing the acidic patch, and at H4-R23, which interacts with the acidic patch of the neighboring NCP. The present study revealed that the H4 tetra-acetylation impairs NCP self-association by changing the interactions of the H4 tail with DNA, and is the first demonstration of crystallization quality NCPs reconstituted with genuine PTMs.