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Curr Opin Genet Dev. 1996 Apr;6(2):176-84.

Special HATs for special occasions: linking histone acetylation to chromatin assembly and gene activation.

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Department of Biology, University of Rochester, New York 14627-0211, USA.


Post-translational acetylation of the core histone amino-terminal tails has long been associated with both chromatin assembly and the regulation of gene expression. The recent identification and cloning of histone acetyltransferase genes represents a significant breakthrough in our understanding of how specific acetylation states are established. Ongoing characterization of these enzymes and their molecular cohorts supports a direct role for acetylation in a signaling pathway that modulates chromatin structure to create new patterns of transcription.

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