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Biochem Cell Biol. 2009 Oct;87(5):799-815. doi: 10.1139/O09-062.

NuA4 and SWR1-C: two chromatin-modifying complexes with overlapping functions and components.

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Centre for Molecular Medicine and Therapeutics, Child and Family Research Institute, Department of Medical Genetics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC V5Z4H4, Canada.


Chromatin structure is important for the compaction of eukaryotic genomes, thus chromatin modifications play a fundamental role in regulating many cellular processes. The coordinated activities of various chromatin-remodelling and -modifying complexes are crucial in maintaining distinct chromatin neighbourhoods, which in turn ensure appropriate gene expression, as well as DNA replication, repair, and recombination. SWR1-C is an ATP-dependent histone deposition complex for the histone variant H2A.Z, whereas NuA4 is a histone acetyltransferase for histones H4, H2A, and H2A.Z. Together the NuA4 and SWR1-C chromatin-modifying complexes alter the chromatin structure through 3 distinct modifications in yeast: post-translational addition of chemical groups, ATP-dependent chromatin remodelling, and histone variant incorporation. These 2 multi-protein complexes share 4 subunits and function together to regulate the circuitry of H2A.Z biology. The components and functions of both multi-protein complexes are evolutionarily conserved and play important roles in multi-cellular development and cellular differentiation in higher eukaryotes. This review will summarize recent findings about NuA4 and SWR1-C and will focus on the connection between these complexes by investigating their physical and functional interactions through eukaryotic evolution.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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