Epigenetics. Epigenetic inheritance uncoupled from sequence-specific recruitment.

Bibliographic Collection: 
Publication Type: Journal Article
Authors: Ragunathan, Kaushik; Jih, Gloria; Moazed, Danesh
Year of Publication: 2015
Journal: Science
Volume: 348
Issue: 6230
Pagination: 1258699
Date Published: 2015 Apr 3
Publication Language: eng
ISSN: 1095-9203
Keywords: Adenine, Catalytic Domain, Cell Cycle Proteins, Epigenesis, Genetic, Gene Expression Regulation, Fungal, Genes, Reporter, Heterochromatin, Histones, Humans, Lysine, Methyltransferases, Nuclear Proteins, Operator Regions, Genetic, Protein Processing, Post-Translational, Recombinant Fusion Proteins, Repressor Proteins, Schizosaccharomyces, Schizosaccharomyces pombe Proteins, Tetracycline

Changes in histone posttranslational modifications are associated with epigenetic states that define distinct patterns of gene expression. It remains unclear whether epigenetic information can be transmitted through histone modifications independently of specific DNA sequence, DNA methylation, or RNA interference. Here we show that, in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, ectopically induced domains of histone H3 lysine 9 methylation (H3K9me), a conserved marker of heterochromatin, are inherited through several mitotic and meiotic cell divisions after removal of the sequence-specific initiator. The putative JmjC domain H3K9 demethylase, Epe1, and the chromodomain of the H3K9 methyltransferase, Clr4/Suv39h, play opposing roles in maintaining silent H3K9me domains. These results demonstrate how a direct "read-write" mechanism involving Clr4 propagates histone modifications and allows histones to act as carriers of epigenetic information.

DOI: 10.1126/science.1258699
Alternate Journal: Science