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PLoS One. 2014 Jan 20;9(1):e84713. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0084713. eCollection 2014.

Evidence for site-specific occupancy of the mitochondrial genome by nuclear transcription factors.

Author information

1
Division of Biology, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, United States of America.
2
Division of Biology, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, United States of America ; Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Pasadena, California, United States of America.

Abstract

Mitochondria contain their own circular genome, with mitochondria-specific transcription and replication systems and corresponding regulatory proteins. All of these proteins are encoded in the nuclear genome and are post-translationally imported into mitochondria. In addition, several nuclear transcription factors have been reported to act in mitochondria, but there has been no comprehensive mapping of their occupancy patterns and it is not clear how many other factors may also be found in mitochondria. Here we address these questions by using ChIP-seq data from the ENCODE, mouseENCODE and modENCODE consortia for 151 human, 31 mouse and 35 C. elegans factors. We identified 8 human and 3 mouse transcription factors with strong localized enrichment over the mitochondrial genome that was usually associated with the corresponding recognition sequence motif. Notably, these sites of occupancy are often the sites with highest ChIP-seq signal intensity within both the nuclear and mitochondrial genomes and are thus best explained as true binding events to mitochondrial DNA, which exist in high copy number in each cell. We corroborated these findings by immunocytochemical staining evidence for mitochondrial localization. However, we were unable to find clear evidence for mitochondrial binding in ENCODE and other publicly available ChIP-seq data for most factors previously reported to localize there. As the first global analysis of nuclear transcription factors binding in mitochondria, this work opens the door to future studies that probe the functional significance of the phenomenon.

PMID:
24465428
PMCID:
PMC3896368
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0084713
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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