Embryonic tissue differentiation is characterized by transitions in cell cycle dynamic-associated core promoter regulation.
ABSTRACT: The core-promoter, a stretch of DNA surrounding the transcription start site (TSS), is a major integration-point for regulatory-signals controlling gene-transcription. Cellular differentiation is marked by divergence in transcriptional repertoire and cell-cycling behaviour between cells of different fates. The role promoter-associated gene-regulatory-networks play in development-associated transitions in cell-cycle-dynamics is poorly understood. This study demonstrates in a vertebrate embryo, how core-promoter variations define transcriptional output in cells transitioning from a proliferative to cell-lineage specifying phenotype. Assessment of cell proliferation across zebrafish embryo segmentation, using the FUCCI transgenic cell-cycle-phase marker, revealed a spatial and lineage-specific separation in cell-cycling behaviour. To investigate the role differential promoter usage plays in this process, cap-analysis-of-gene-expression (CAGE) was performed on cells segregated by cycling dynamics. This analysis revealed a dramatic increase in tissue-specific gene expression, concurrent with slowed cycling behaviour. We revealed a distinct sharpening in TSS utilization in genes upregulated in slowly cycling, differentiating tissues, associated with enhanced utilization of the TATA-box, in addition to Sp1 binding-sites. In contrast, genes upregulated in rapidly cycling cells carry broad distribution of TSS utilization, coupled with enrichment for the CCAAT-box. These promoter features appear to correspond to cell-cycle-dynamic rather than tissue/cell-lineage origin. Moreover, we observed genes with cell-cycle-dynamic-associated transitioning in TSS distribution and differential utilization of alternative promoters. These results demonstrate the regulatory role of core-promoters in cell-cycle-dependent transcription regulation, during embryo-development.
Project description:The core-promoter, a stretch of DNA surrounding the transcription-start-site (TSS), is a major integration-point for regulatory-signals controlling gene-transcription. Cellular-differentiation is marked by divergence in transcriptional-repertoire and cell- cycling behaviour between cells of different fates. The role promoter-associated gene- regulatory-networks play in development-associated transitions in cell-cycle- dynamics is poorly understood. This study demonstrates in a vertebrate embryo, how core-promoter variations define transcriptional-output in cells transitioning from a proliferative to cell-lineage specifying phenotype. Assessment of cell-proliferation across zebrafish embryo-development, using the FUCCI-transgenic cell-cycle- phase marker, revealed a spatial and lineage-specific separation in cell-cycling behaviour. To investigate the role differential promoter-usage plays in this process, cap-analysis-of-gene-expression (CAGE) was performed on cells segregated by cycling-dynamics.
Project description:Cap Analysis of Gene Expression (CAGE) in combination with single-molecule sequencing technology allows precision mapping of transcription start sites (TSSs) and genome-wide capture of promoter activities in differentiated and steady state cell populations. Much less is known about whether TSS profiling can characterize diverse and non-steady state cell populations, such as the approximately 400 transitory and heterogeneous cell types that arise during ontogeny of vertebrate animals. To gain such insight, we used the chick model and performed CAGE-based TSS analysis on embryonic samples covering the full 3-week developmental period. In total, 31,863 robust TSS peaks (>1 tag per million [TPM]) were mapped to the latest chicken genome assembly, of which 34% to 46% were active in any given developmental stage. ZENBU, a web-based, open-source platform, was used for interactive data exploration. TSSs of genes critical for lineage differentiation could be precisely mapped and their activities tracked throughout development, suggesting that non-steady state and heterogeneous cell populations are amenable to CAGE-based transcriptional analysis. Our study also uncovered a large set of extremely stable housekeeping TSSs and many novel stage-specific ones. We furthermore demonstrated that TSS mapping could expedite motif-based promoter analysis for regulatory modules associated with stage-specific and housekeeping genes. Finally, using Brachyury as an example, we provide evidence that precise TSS mapping in combination with Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeat (CRISPR)-on technology enables us, for the first time, to efficiently target endogenous avian genes for transcriptional activation. Taken together, our results represent the first report of genome-wide TSS mapping in birds and the first systematic developmental TSS analysis in any amniote species (birds and mammals). By facilitating promoter-based molecular analysis and genetic manipulation, our work also underscores the value of avian models in unravelling the complex regulatory mechanism of cell lineage specification during amniote development.
Project description:A core promoter is a stretch of DNA surrounding the transcription start site (TSS) that integrates regulatory inputs and recruits general transcription factors to initiate transcription. The nature and causative relationship of the DNA sequence and chromatin signals that govern the selection of most TSSs by RNA polymerase II remain unresolved. Maternal to zygotic transition represents the most marked change of the transcriptome repertoire in the vertebrate life cycle. Early embryonic development in zebrafish is characterized by a series of transcriptionally silent cell cycles regulated by inherited maternal gene products: zygotic genome activation commences at the tenth cell cycle, marking the mid-blastula transition. This transition provides a unique opportunity to study the rules of TSS selection and the hierarchy of events linking transcription initiation with key chromatin modifications. We analysed TSS usage during zebrafish early embryonic development at high resolution using cap analysis of gene expression, and determined the positions of H3K4me3-marked promoter-associated nucleosomes. Here we show that the transition from the maternal to zygotic transcriptome is characterized by a switch between two fundamentally different modes of defining transcription initiation, which drive the dynamic change of TSS usage and promoter shape. A maternal-specific TSS selection, which requires an A/T-rich (W-box) motif, is replaced with a zygotic TSS selection grammar characterized by broader patterns of dinucleotide enrichments, precisely aligned with the first downstream (+1) nucleosome. The developmental dynamics of the H3K4me3-marked nucleosomes reveal their DNA-sequence-associated positioning at promoters before zygotic transcription and subsequent transcription-independent adjustment to the final position downstream of the zygotic TSS. The two TSS-defining grammars coexist, often physically overlapping, in core promoters of constitutively expressed genes to enable their expression in the two regulatory environments. The dissection of overlapping core promoter determinants represents a framework for future studies of promoter structure and function across different regulatory contexts.
Project description:PROM1 is the gene encoding prominin-1 or CD133, an important cell surface marker for the isolation of both normal and cancer stem cells. PROM1 transcripts initiate at a range of transcription start sites (TSS) associated with distinct tissue and cancer expression profiles. Using high resolution Cap Analysis of Gene Expression (CAGE) sequencing we characterize TSS utilization across a broad range of normal and developmental tissues. We identify a novel proximal promoter (P6) within CD133(+) melanoma cell lines and stem cells. Additional exon array sampling finds P6 to be active in populations enriched for mesenchyme, neural stem cells and within CD133(+) enriched Ewing sarcomas. The P6 promoter is enriched with respect to previously characterized PROM1 promoters for a HMGI/Y (HMGA1) family transcription factor binding site motif and exhibits different epigenetic modifications relative to the canonical promoter region of PROM1.
Project description:Transgenic sexing strains (TSS) that carry conditional female lethal genes are advantageous for genetic control programs based on the sterile insect technique (SIT). It is desirable if females die early in development as larval diet is a major cost for mass production facilities. This can be achieved by using a gene promoter that is only active in embryos to drive expression of the tetracycline transactivator (tTA), the transcription factor commonly used in two-component TSS. While an embryo-specific promoter is ideal it may not be essential for assembling an effective TSS as tTA can be repressed by addition of tetracycline to the diet at larval and/or adult stages. Here we have investigated this idea by isolating and employing the promoters from the Lucilia spitting image and actin 5C genes to drive tTA expression in embryos and later stages. L. cuprina TSS with the tTA drivers and tTA-regulated tetO-Lshid effectors produced only females when raised on a limited tetracycline diet. The Lshid transgene contains a sex-specific intron and as a consequence only females produce LsHID protein. TSS females died at early larval stages, which makes the lines advantageous for an SIT program.
Project description:In cycling human endometrium, menstruation is followed by rapid estrogen-dependent growth. Upon ovulation, progesterone and rising cellular cAMP levels activate the transcription factor Forkhead box O1 (FOXO1) in endometrial stromal cells (EnSCs), leading to cell cycle exit and differentiation into decidual cells that control embryo implantation. Here we show that FOXO1 also causes acute senescence of a subpopulation of decidualizing EnSCs in an IL-8 dependent manner. Selective depletion or enrichment of this subpopulation revealed that decidual senescence drives the transient inflammatory response associated with endometrial receptivity. Further, senescent cells prevent differentiation of endometrial mesenchymal stem cells in decidualizing cultures. As the cycle progresses, IL-15 activated uterine natural killer (uNK) cells selectively target and clear senescent decidual cells through granule exocytosis. Our findings reveal that acute decidual senescence governs endometrial rejuvenation and remodeling at embryo implantation, and suggest a critical role for uNK cells in maintaining homeostasis in cycling endometrium.
Project description:The preimplantation embryo is sensitive to culture conditions in vitro and poor maternal diet in vivo. Such environmental perturbations can have long-lasting detrimental consequences for offspring health and physiology. However, early embryo susceptibility to other aspects of maternal health and their potential long-term influence into adulthood is relatively unexplored. In this study, we established an in vivo mouse model of maternal periconceptional systemic inflammation by intraperitoneal lipopolysaccharide (LPS) administration on the day of zygote formation and investigated the consequences into adulthood.In the short term, maternal LPS challenge induced a transient and typical maternal sickness response (elevated serum proinflammatory cytokines and hypoactive behaviour). Maternal LPS challenge altered preimplantation embryo morphogenesis and cell lineage allocation, resulting in reduced blastocyst inner cell mass (ICM) cell number and a reduced ICM:trophectoderm cell ratio. In the long term, diverse aspects of offspring physiology were affected by maternal LPS treatment. Whilst birthweight, growth and adult blood pressure were unaltered, reduced activity in an open-field behaviour test, increased fat pad:body weight ratio and increased body mass index were observed in male, but not female, offspring. Most importantly, the maternal LPS challenge caused corticosterone-independent blunting of the serum proinflammatory cytokine response to innate immune challenge in both male and female offspring. The suppressed state of innate immunity in challenged offspring was dose-dependent with respect to the maternal LPS concentration administered.These results demonstrate for the first time that the preimplantation embryo in vivo is sensitive to maternal systemic inflammation, with effects on blastocyst cell lineage allocation and consequences for behaviour, adiposity and innate immune response in adult offspring. Critically, we identify a novel mechanism mediated through maternal-embryonic interactions that confers plasticity in the development of the innate immune system, which is potentially important in setting postnatal tolerance to environmental pathogens. Our study extends the concept of developmental programming of health and disease to include maternal health at the time of conception.
Project description:Sarcosine oxidase catalyzes the oxidative demethylation of sarcosine to yield glycine, formaldehyde, and hydrogen peroxide. In this study, we analyzed the transcription and regulation of the sox locus, including the sarcosine oxidase-encoding genes in Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). RT-PCR analysis revealed that the sox locus forms two opposing transcriptional units: soxB (soxB/E/F/G/H/I) and soxR (soxR/C/D/A). The typical -12/-24 consensus sequence was located 15?bp and 12?bp from the transcriptional start site (TSS) of soxB and soxC, respectively. Promoter-lacZ fusion assays showed that the soxB promoter is controlled by the Sigma(54) factor and is activated by the Sigma(54)-dependent transcriptional regulator SoxR. SoxR also inhibits its own expression. Expression from the PsoxCR promoter, which is responsible for the transcription of soxC, soxD, and soxA, is Sigma(54)-dependent and requires SoxR. An 11-bp inverted repeat sequence was identified as SoxR binding site upstream of the soxB TSS. Purified SoxR specifically bound a DNA fragment containing this region. Mutation or deletion of this sequence abolished the transcriptional activities of soxB and soxC. Thus, SoxR binds to the same sequence to activate the transcription of soxB and soxC. Sarcosine utilization was abolished in soxB and soxR mutants, suggesting that the sox locus is essential for sarcosine utilization.
Project description:The Caulobacter cell cycle includes in an asymmetric cell division that is driven by a core regulatory circuit comprised of 4 transcription factors (DnaA, GcrA, CtrA, and SciP) and a DNA methyltransferase (CcrM). Using a modified global 5’ RACE protocol we mapped 2,726 transcriptional start sites (TSS) in the 4mb Caulobacter genome and identified 586 cell cycle-regulated TSS. The core cell cycle circuit directly controls about 55% of cell cycle-regulated TSS by integrating multiple regulatory inputs within at least 322 promoters, providing a large number of transcription profiles from a small number of regulatory factors. Here, we identified previously unknown features of the core cell cycle circuit, including antisense TSS within dnaA and ctrA, plus newly identified TSS for ctrA and ccrM. Altogether, we identified 615 antisense TSS plus 241 genes that are transcribed from multiple TSS. The multiple TSS in the same promoter region often exhibit different cell cycle activation timing, These novel features of the global transcript profile add significant insight to the system architecture of the Caulobacter cell cycle regulatory circuit. Global 5' RACE was performed to measure Transcription Start Site activity at time points of the Caulobacter NA1000 cell cycle
Project description:Previous studies demonstrated that massive induction of transcriptional readthrough generates downstream of gene-containing transcripts (DoGs) in cells under stress condition. Here, we analyzed TSS-seq (transcription start site sequencing) data from the DBTSS database. We investigated TSS tags at the end of gene for all pan-stress and untreated-cell DoGs, in comparison with expression-matched non-DoGs. We observed significantly more TSS tags at the end of pan-stress and untreated-cell DoG genes than non-DoG genes, even though their TSS tags in the promoter is the same. Importantly, the median value of TSS tags at gene end normalized to gene promoter is significantly higher than the median expression ratio of short DoG to host gene and of long DoG to host gene. Our results indicate that downstream overlapping long non-coding RNAs derived from the TSS at the gene end may be an important source of DoGs.