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Genes Dev. 1999 Jun 1;13(11):1412-21.

Cell cycle-regulated histone acetylation required for expression of the yeast HO gene.

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  • 1Program in Molecular Medicine and Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Worcester, Massachusetts 01605, USA.


Expression of the yeast HO gene in late G1 of the cell cycle requires the SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling complex, the Gcn5p histone acetyltransferase, and two different sequence-specific transcriptional activators, Swi5p and Swi4p/Swi6p. We have used chromatin immunoprecipitation assays to investigate the role of each of these trans-acting factors in establishing a cell cycle-regulated domain of histone acetylation surrounding the HO upstream regulatory region. We detect a approximately 1-kb domain of H3 and H4 acetylation that is established in mid-G1, prior to and independent of HO transcription, which then declines with kinetics similar to inactivation of HO. This cell cycle burst of histone acetylation requires Gcn5p, SWI/SNF, and the Swi5p activator, but occurs in the absence of the Swi4p activator. We also find that inactivation of the Sin3p/Rpd3p deacetylase complex leads to a high level of acetylation at the HO locus throughout the cell cycle. We propose a sequential model for activation of HO in which the Swi5p-dependent recruitment of the Gcn5p acetyltransferase requires chromatin remodeling events by the SWI/SNF complex.

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