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Cell Res. 2005 Apr;15(4):292-300.

Chromatin domain boundaries: insulators and beyond.

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1
National Laboratory of Medical Molecular Biology, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, China.

Abstract

The eukaryotic genome is organized into functionally and structurally distinct domains, representing regulatory units for gene expression and chromosome behavior. DNA sequences that mark the border between adjacent domains are the insulators or boundary elements, which are required in maintenance of the function of different domains. Some insulators need others enable to play insulation activity. Chromatin domains are defined by distinct sets of post-translationally modified histones. Recent studies show that these histone modifications are also involved in establishment of sharp chromatin boundaries in order to prevent the spreading of distinct domains. Additionally, in some loci, the high-order chromatin structures for long-range looping interactions also have boundary activities, suggesting a correlation between insulators and chromatin loop domains. In this review, we will discuss recent progress in the field of chromatin domain boundaries.

PMID:
15857584
DOI:
10.1038/sj.cr.7290298
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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