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Cell Cycle. 2006 Oct;5(20):2354-63. Epub 2006 Oct 16.

Estimating the prevalence and regulatory potential of the telomere looping effect in yeast transcription regulation.

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National Center for Biotechnology Information, National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20894, USA.


Telomeres have long been implicated in the regulation of gene expression. Some studies have reported that telomere looping effect (TLE) can juxtapose genes and regulatory sequences that are far apart and facilitate long-distance control of gene expression. In this work, we report a detailed investigation on the prevalence and regulatory potential of TLE on a genomic scale by assembling data on protein-DNA interactions from several large-scale ChIp-chip experiments in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Analysis of the assembled data revealed that a statistically significant number of DNA segments that were inferred to be bound by ten or more transcription factors in these experiments physically mapped to the ends of several chromosomes (19 of 32 chromosome ends). For the 83 transcription factors that were inferred to interact with these DNA segments, we found a statistically significant skew in the distribution of their internal binding sites over the length of the entire chromosome, such that more than expected binding events occurred proximal to chromosomal ends than elsewhere. Taken together these observations suggest that the telomere looping effect is their most likely explanation and imply that a notable fraction of the internally bound yeast transcription factors potentially interact with looped back telomeres. Further, we also identified several components of the basal transcriptional machinery that are also frequently linked to these chromosome end segments, strengthening the proposal for a direct interaction between the chromosome ends and internally located transcriptional complexes. We observed that certain chromatin factors might participate in the TLE and potentially modulate gene expression by chromatin modifications such as histone deacetylation. Our findings provide the first computational evidence for a significant role of long-range regulatory interactions due to telomere looping. Based on these observations, we also propose that genome-wide chromatin immunoprecipitation data might be useful to systematically uncover long-range chromatin looping effects in gene expression.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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