DNA-histone interactions are sufficient to position a single nucleosome juxtaposing Drosophila Adh adult enhancer and distal promoter.

Nucleic Acids Res 1993 Feb 25;21(4):957-67

Published erratum appears in:
Nucleic Acids Res 1993 May 11;21(9):2286

Jackson JR, Benyajati C

Department of Biology, University of Rochester, NY 14627.

The alcohol dehydrogenase gene (Adh) of Drosophila melanogaster is transcribed from two tandem promoters in distinct developmental and tissue-specific patterns. Both promoters are regulated by separate upstream enhancer regions. In its wild-type context the adult enhancer specifically stimulates only the distal promoter, approximately 400 bp downstream, and not the proximal promoter, which is approximately 700 bp further downstream. Genomic footprinting and micrococcal nuclease analyses have revealed a specifically positioned nucleosome between the distal promoter and adult enhancer. In vitro reconstitution of this nucleosome demonstrated that DNA-core histone interactions alone are sufficient to position the nucleosome. Based on this observation and sequence periodicities in the underlying DNA, the mechanism of positioning appears to involve specific DNA structural features (ie flexibility or curvature). We have observed this nucleosome positioned early during development, before tissue differentiation, and before non-histone protein-DNA interactions are established at the distal promoter or adult enhancer. This nucleosome positioning element in the Adh regulatory region could be involved in establishing a specific tertiary nucleoprotein structure that facilitates specific cis-element accessibility and/or distal promoter-adult enhancer interactions.

PMID: 8451195, UI: 93197163