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Bibliography on: Topologically Associating Domains

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ESP: PubMed Auto Bibliography 18 Oct 2019 at 01:48 Created: 

Topologically Associating Domains

"Recent studies have shown that chromosomes in a range of organisms are compartmentalized in different types of chromatin domains. In mammals, chromosomes form compartments that are composed of smaller Topologically Associating Domains (TADs). TADs are thought to represent functional domains of gene regulation but much is still unknown about the mechanisms of their formation and how they exert their regulatory effect on embedded genes. Further, similar domains have been detected in other organisms, including flies, worms, fungi and bacteria. Although in all these cases these domains appear similar as detected by 3C-based methods, their biology appears to be quite distinct with differences in the protein complexes involved in their formation and differences in their internal organization." QUOTE FROM: Dekker Job and Heard Edith (2015), Structural and functional diversity of Topologically Associating Domains, FEBS Letters, 589, doi: 10.1016/j.febslet.2015.08.044

Created with PubMed® Query: "Topologically Associating Domains" OR "Topologically Associating Domain" NOT pmcbook NOT ispreviousversion

Citations The Papers (from PubMed®)

RevDate: 2019-10-15

Zhu H, Z Wang (2019)

SCL: a lattice-based approach to infer 3D chromosome structures from single-cell Hi-C data.

Bioinformatics (Oxford, England), 35(20):3981-3988.

MOTIVATION: In contrast to population-based Hi-C data, single-cell Hi-C data are zero-inflated and do not indicate the frequency of proximate DNA segments. There are a limited number of computational tools that can model the 3D structures of chromosomes based on single-cell Hi-C data.

RESULTS: We developed single-cell lattice (SCL), a computational method to reconstruct 3D structures of chromosomes based on single-cell Hi-C data. We designed a loss function and a 2 D Gaussian function specifically for the characteristics of single-cell Hi-C data. A chromosome is represented as beads-on-a-string and stored in a 3 D cubic lattice. Metropolis-Hastings simulation and simulated annealing are used to simulate the structure and minimize the loss function. We evaluated the SCL-inferred 3 D structures (at both 500 and 50 kb resolutions) using multiple criteria and compared them with the ones generated by another modeling software program. The results indicate that the 3 D structures generated by SCL closely fit single-cell Hi-C data. We also found similar patterns of trans-chromosomal contact beads, Lamin-B1 enriched topologically associating domains (TADs), and H3K4me3 enriched TADs by mapping data from previous studies onto the SCL-inferred 3 D structures.

The C++ source code of SCL is freely available at

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

RevDate: 2019-10-14

Viets K, Sauria MEG, Chernoff C, et al (2019)

Characterization of Button Loci that Promote Homologous Chromosome Pairing and Cell-Type-Specific Interchromosomal Gene Regulation.

Developmental cell pii:S1534-5807(19)30736-1 [Epub ahead of print].

Homologous chromosomes colocalize to regulate gene expression in processes including genomic imprinting, X-inactivation, and transvection. In Drosophila, homologous chromosomes pair throughout development, promoting transvection. The "button" model of pairing proposes that specific regions along chromosomes pair with high affinity. Here, we identify buttons interspersed across the fly genome that pair with their homologous sequences, even when relocated to multiple positions in the genome. A majority of transgenes that span a full topologically associating domain (TAD) function as buttons, but not all buttons contain TADs. Additionally, buttons are enriched for insulator protein clusters. Fragments of buttons do not pair, suggesting that combinations of elements within a button are required for pairing. Pairing is necessary but not sufficient for transvection. Additionally, pairing and transvection are stronger in some cell types than in others, suggesting that pairing strength regulates transvection efficiency between cell types. Thus, buttons pair homologous chromosomes to facilitate cell-type-specific interchromosomal gene regulation.

RevDate: 2019-10-11

Renschler G, Richard G, Valsecchi CIK, et al (2019)

Hi-C guided assemblies reveal conserved regulatory topologies on X and autosomes despite extensive genome shuffling.

Genes & development pii:gad.328971.119 [Epub ahead of print].

Genome rearrangements that occur during evolution impose major challenges on regulatory mechanisms that rely on three-dimensional genome architecture. Here, we developed a scaffolding algorithm and generated chromosome-length assemblies from Hi-C data for studying genome topology in three distantly related Drosophila species. We observe extensive genome shuffling between these species with one synteny breakpoint after approximately every six genes. A/B compartments, a set of large gene-dense topologically associating domains (TADs), and spatial contacts between high-affinity sites (HAS) located on the X chromosome are maintained over 40 million years, indicating architectural conservation at various hierarchies. Evolutionary conserved genes cluster in the vicinity of HAS, while HAS locations appear evolutionarily flexible, thus uncoupling functional requirement of dosage compensation from individual positions on the linear X chromosome. Therefore, 3D architecture is preserved even in scenarios of thousands of rearrangements highlighting its relevance for essential processes such as dosage compensation of the X chromosome.

RevDate: 2019-10-08

Le Caignec C, Pichon O, Briand A, et al (2019)

Fryns type mesomelic dysplasia of the upper limbs caused by inverted duplications of the HOXD gene cluster.

European journal of human genetics : EJHG pii:10.1038/s41431-019-0522-2 [Epub ahead of print].

The HoxD cluster is critical for vertebrate limb development. Enhancers located in both the telomeric and centromeric gene deserts flanking the cluster regulate the transcription of HoxD genes. In rare patients, duplications, balanced translocations or inversions misregulating HOXD genes are responsible for mesomelic dysplasia of the upper and lower limbs. By aCGH, whole-genome mate-pair sequencing, long-range PCR and fiber fluorescent in situ hybridization, we studied patients from two families displaying mesomelic dysplasia limited to the upper limbs. We identified microduplications including the HOXD cluster and showed that microduplications were in an inverted orientation and inserted between the HOXD cluster and the telomeric enhancers. Our results highlight the existence of an autosomal dominant condition consisting of isolated ulnar dysplasia caused by microduplications inserted between the HOXD cluster and the telomeric enhancers. The duplications likely disconnect the HOXD9 to HOXD11 genes from their regulatory sequences. This presumptive loss-of-function may have contributed to the phenotype. In both cases, however, these rearrangements brought HOXD13 closer to telomeric enhancers, suggesting that the alterations derive from the dominant-negative effect of this digit-specific protein when ectopically expressed during the early development of forearms, through the disruption of topologically associating domain structure at the HOXD locus.

RevDate: 2019-09-22

Ooi WF, Nargund AM, Lim KJ, et al (2019)

Integrated paired-end enhancer profiling and whole-genome sequencing reveals recurrent CCNE1 and IGF2 enhancer hijacking in primary gastric adenocarcinoma.

Gut pii:gutjnl-2018-317612 [Epub ahead of print].

OBJECTIVE: Genomic structural variations (SVs) causing rewiring of cis-regulatory elements remain largely unexplored in gastric cancer (GC). To identify SVs affecting enhancer elements in GC (enhancer-based SVs), we integrated epigenomic enhancer profiles revealed by paired-end H3K27ac ChIP-sequencing from primary GCs with tumour whole-genome sequencing (WGS) data (PeNChIP-seq/WGS).

DESIGN: We applied PeNChIP-seq to 11 primary GCs and matched normal tissues combined with WGS profiles of >200 GCs. Epigenome profiles were analysed alongside matched RNA-seq data to identify tumour-associated enhancer-based SVs with altered cancer transcription. Functional validation of candidate enhancer-based SVs was performed using CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing, chromosome conformation capture assays (4C-seq, Capture-C) and Hi-C analysis of primary GCs.

RESULTS: PeNChIP-seq/WGS revealed ~150 enhancer-based SVs in GC. The majority (63%) of SVs linked to target gene deregulation were associated with increased tumour expression. Enhancer-based SVs targeting CCNE1, a key driver of therapy resistance, occurred in 8% of patients frequently juxtaposing diverse distal enhancers to CCNE1 proximal regions. CCNE1-rearranged GCs were associated with high CCNE1 expression, disrupted CCNE1 topologically associating domain (TAD) boundaries, and novel TAD interactions in CCNE1-rearranged primary tumours. We also observed IGF2 enhancer-based SVs, previously noted in colorectal cancer, highlighting a common non-coding genetic driver alteration in gastric and colorectal malignancies.

CONCLUSION: Integrated paired-end NanoChIP-seq and WGS of gastric tumours reveals tumour-associated regulatory SV in regions associated with both simple and complex genomic rearrangements. Genomic rearrangements may thus exploit enhancer-hijacking as a common mechanism to drive oncogene expression in GC.

RevDate: 2019-09-16

Hansen AS, Hsieh TS, Cattoglio C, et al (2019)

Distinct Classes of Chromatin Loops Revealed by Deletion of an RNA-Binding Region in CTCF.

Molecular cell pii:S1097-2765(19)30594-5 [Epub ahead of print].

Mammalian genomes are folded into topologically associating domains (TADs), consisting of chromatin loops anchored by CTCF and cohesin. Some loops are cell-type specific. Here we asked whether CTCF loops are established by a universal or locus-specific mechanism. Investigating the molecular determinants of CTCF clustering, we found that CTCF self-association in vitro is RNase sensitive and that an internal RNA-binding region (RBRi) mediates CTCF clustering and RNA interaction in vivo. Strikingly, deleting the RBRi impairs about half of all chromatin loops in mESCs and causes deregulation of gene expression. Disrupted loop formation correlates with diminished clustering and chromatin binding of RBRi mutant CTCF, which in turn results in a failure to halt cohesin-mediated extrusion. Thus, CTCF loops fall into at least two classes: RBRi-independent and RBRi-dependent loops. We speculate that evidence for RBRi-dependent loops may provide a molecular mechanism for establishing cell-specific CTCF loops, potentially regulated by RNA(s) or other RBRi-interacting partners.

RevDate: 2019-09-13

Rhie SK, Perez AA, Lay FD, et al (2019)

A high-resolution 3D epigenomic map reveals insights into the creation of the prostate cancer transcriptome.

Nature communications, 10(1):4154 pii:10.1038/s41467-019-12079-8.

To better understand the impact of chromatin structure on regulation of the prostate cancer transcriptome, we develop high-resolution chromatin interaction maps in normal and prostate cancer cells using in situ Hi-C. By combining the in situ Hi-C data with active and repressive histone marks, CTCF binding sites, nucleosome-depleted regions, and transcriptome profiling, we identify topologically associating domains (TADs) that change in size and epigenetic states between normal and prostate cancer cells. Moreover, we identify normal and prostate cancer-specific enhancer-promoter loops and involved transcription factors. For example, we show that FOXA1 is enriched in prostate cancer-specific enhancer-promoter loop anchors. We also find that the chromatin structure surrounding the androgen receptor (AR) locus is altered in the prostate cancer cells with many cancer-specific enhancer-promoter loops. This creation of 3D epigenomic maps enables a better understanding of prostate cancer biology and mechanisms of gene regulation.

RevDate: 2019-09-12

Williamson I, Kane L, Devenney PS, et al (2019)

Developmentally regulated Shh expression is robust to TAD perturbations.

Development (Cambridge, England) pii:dev.179523 [Epub ahead of print].

Topologically Associating Domains (TADs) have been proposed to both guide and constrain enhancer activity. Shh is located within a TAD known to contain all its enhancers. To investigate the importance of chromatin conformation and TAD integrity on developmental gene regulation, we have manipulated the Shh TAD - creating internal deletions, deleting CTCF sites, and deleting and inverting sequences at TAD boundaries. Chromosome conformation capture and fluorescence in situ hybridisation assays were used to investigate the changes in chromatin conformation that result from these manipulations. Our data suggest that these substantial alterations in TAD structure have no readily detectable effect on Shh expression patterns or levels of Shh expression during development - except where enhancers are deleted - and result in no detectable phenotypes. Only in the case of a larger deletion at one TAD boundary could ectopic influence of the Shh limb enhancer be detected on a gene (Mnx1) in the neighbouring TAD. Our data suggests that, contrary to expectations, the developmental regulation of Shh expression is remarkably robust to TAD perturbations.

RevDate: 2019-09-12

Liu Q, Lv H, R Jiang (2019)

hicGAN infers super resolution Hi-C data with generative adversarial networks.

Bioinformatics (Oxford, England), 35(14):i99-i107.

MOTIVATION: Hi-C is a genome-wide technology for investigating 3D chromatin conformation by measuring physical contacts between pairs of genomic regions. The resolution of Hi-C data directly impacts the effectiveness and accuracy of downstream analysis such as identifying topologically associating domains (TADs) and meaningful chromatin loops. High resolution Hi-C data are valuable resources which implicate the relationship between 3D genome conformation and function, especially linking distal regulatory elements to their target genes. However, high resolution Hi-C data across various tissues and cell types are not always available due to the high sequencing cost. It is therefore indispensable to develop computational approaches for enhancing the resolution of Hi-C data.

RESULTS: We proposed hicGAN, an open-sourced framework, for inferring high resolution Hi-C data from low resolution Hi-C data with generative adversarial networks (GANs). To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to apply GANs to 3D genome analysis. We demonstrate that hicGAN effectively enhances the resolution of low resolution Hi-C data by generating matrices that are highly consistent with the original high resolution Hi-C matrices. A typical scenario of usage for our approach is to enhance low resolution Hi-C data in new cell types, especially where the high resolution Hi-C data are not available. Our study not only presents a novel approach for enhancing Hi-C data resolution, but also provides fascinating insights into disclosing complex mechanism underlying the formation of chromatin contacts.

We release hicGAN as an open-sourced software at

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

RevDate: 2019-09-11

Ray J, Munn PR, Vihervaara A, et al (2019)

Chromatin conformation remains stable upon extensive transcriptional changes driven by heat shock.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America pii:1901244116 [Epub ahead of print].

Heat shock (HS) initiates rapid, extensive, and evolutionarily conserved changes in transcription that are accompanied by chromatin decondensation and nucleosome loss at HS loci. Here we have employed in situ Hi-C to determine how heat stress affects long-range chromatin conformation in human and Drosophila cells. We found that compartments and topologically associating domains (TADs) remain unchanged by an acute HS. Knockdown of Heat Shock Factor 1 (HSF1), the master transcriptional regulator of the HS response, identified HSF1-dependent genes and revealed that up-regulation is often mediated by distal HSF1 bound enhancers. HSF1-dependent genes were usually found in the same TAD as the nearest HSF1 binding site. Although most interactions between HSF1 binding sites and target promoters were established in the nonheat shock (NHS) condition, a subset increased contact frequency following HS. Integrating information about HSF1 binding strength, RNA polymerase abundance at the HSF1 bound sites (putative enhancers), and contact frequency with a target promoter accurately predicted which up-regulated genes were direct targets of HSF1 during HS. Our results suggest that the chromatin conformation necessary for a robust HS response is preestablished in NHS cells of diverse metazoan species.

RevDate: 2019-09-10

Kikuchi M, Hara N, Hasegawa M, et al (2019)

Enhancer variants associated with Alzheimer's disease affect gene expression via chromatin looping.

BMC medical genomics, 12(1):128 pii:10.1186/s12920-019-0574-8.

BACKGROUND: Genome-wide association studies (GWASs) have identified single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that may be genetic factors underlying Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, how these AD-associated SNPs (AD SNPs) contribute to the pathogenesis of this disease is poorly understood because most of them are located in non-coding regions, such as introns and intergenic regions. Previous studies reported that some disease-associated SNPs affect regulatory elements including enhancers. We hypothesized that non-coding AD SNPs are located in enhancers and affect gene expression levels via chromatin loops.

METHODS: To characterize AD SNPs within non-coding regions, we extracted 406 AD SNPs with GWAS p-values of less than 1.00 × 10- 6 from the GWAS catalog database. Of these, we selected 392 SNPs within non-coding regions. Next, we checked whether those non-coding AD SNPs were located in enhancers that typically regulate gene expression levels using publicly available data for enhancers that were predicted in 127 human tissues or cell types. We sought expression quantitative trait locus (eQTL) genes affected by non-coding AD SNPs within enhancers because enhancers are regulatory elements that influence the gene expression levels. To elucidate how the non-coding AD SNPs within enhancers affect the gene expression levels, we identified chromatin-chromatin interactions by Hi-C experiments.

RESULTS: We report the following findings: (1) nearly 30% of non-coding AD SNPs are located in enhancers; (2) eQTL genes affected by non-coding AD SNPs within enhancers are associated with amyloid beta clearance, synaptic transmission, and immune responses; (3) 95% of the AD SNPs located in enhancers co-localize with their eQTL genes in topologically associating domains suggesting that regulation may occur through chromatin higher-order structures; (4) rs1476679 spatially contacts the promoters of eQTL genes via CTCF-CTCF interactions; (5) the effect of other AD SNPs such as rs7364180 is likely to be, at least in part, indirect through regulation of transcription factors that in turn regulate AD associated genes.

CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that non-coding AD SNPs may affect the function of enhancers thereby influencing the expression levels of surrounding or distant genes via chromatin loops. This result may explain how some non-coding AD SNPs contribute to AD pathogenesis.

RevDate: 2019-09-09

Anderson EC, Frankino PA, Higuchi-Sanabria R, et al (2019)

X Chromosome Domain Architecture Regulates Caenorhabditis elegans Lifespan but Not Dosage Compensation.

Developmental cell pii:S1534-5807(19)30664-1 [Epub ahead of print].

Mechanisms establishing higher-order chromosome structures and their roles in gene regulation are elusive. We analyzed chromosome architecture during nematode X chromosome dosage compensation, which represses transcription via a dosage-compensation condensin complex (DCC) that binds hermaphrodite Xs and establishes megabase-sized topologically associating domains (TADs). We show that DCC binding at high-occupancy sites (rex sites) defines eight TAD boundaries. Single rex deletions disrupted boundaries, and single insertions created new boundaries, demonstrating that a rex site is necessary and sufficient to define DCC-dependent boundary locations. Deleting eight rex sites (8rexΔ) recapitulated TAD structure of DCC mutants, permitting analysis when chromosome-wide domain architecture was disrupted but most DCC binding remained. 8rexΔ animals exhibited no changes in X expression and lacked dosage-compensation mutant phenotypes. Hence, TAD boundaries are neither the cause nor the consequence of DCC-mediated gene repression. Abrogating TAD structure did, however, reduce thermotolerance, accelerate aging, and shorten lifespan, implicating chromosome architecture in stress responses and aging.

RevDate: 2019-09-06

Kaaij LJT, Mohn F, van der Weide RH, et al (2019)

The ChAHP Complex Counteracts Chromatin Looping at CTCF Sites that Emerged from SINE Expansions in Mouse.

Cell, 178(6):1437-1451.e14.

CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) and cohesin are key players in three-dimensional chromatin organization. The topologically associating domains (TADs) demarcated by CTCF are remarkably well conserved between species, although genome-wide CTCF binding has diverged substantially following transposon-mediated motif expansions. Therefore, the CTCF consensus motif poorly predicts TADs, and additional factors must modulate CTCF binding and subsequent TAD formation. Here, we demonstrate that the ChAHP complex (CHD4, ADNP, HP1) competes with CTCF for a common set of binding motifs. In Adnp knockout cells, novel insulated regions are formed at sites normally bound by ChAHP, whereas proximal canonical boundaries are weakened. These data reveal that CTCF-mediated loop formation is modulated by a distinct zinc-finger protein complex. Strikingly, ChAHP-bound loci are mainly situated within less diverged SINE B2 transposable elements. This implicates ChAHP in maintenance of evolutionarily conserved spatial chromatin organization by buffering novel CTCF binding sites that emerged through SINE expansions.

RevDate: 2019-08-26

Tan G, Polychronopoulos D, B Lenhard (2019)

CNEr: A toolkit for exploring extreme noncoding conservation.

PLoS computational biology, 15(8):e1006940 pii:PCOMPBIOL-D-19-00365 [Epub ahead of print].

Conserved Noncoding Elements (CNEs) are elements exhibiting extreme noncoding conservation in Metazoan genomes. They cluster around developmental genes and act as long-range enhancers, yet nothing that we know about their function explains the observed conservation levels. Clusters of CNEs coincide with topologically associating domains (TADs), indicating ancient origins and stability of TAD locations. This has suggested further hypotheses about the still elusive origin of CNEs, and has provided a comparative genomics-based method of estimating the position of TADs around developmentally regulated genes in genomes where chromatin conformation capture data is missing. To enable researchers in gene regulation and chromatin biology to start deciphering this phenomenon, we developed CNEr, a R/Bioconductor toolkit for large-scale identification of CNEs and for studying their genomic properties. We apply CNEr to two novel genome comparisons-fruit fly vs tsetse fly, and two sea urchin genomes-and report novel insights gained from their analysis. We also show how to reveal interesting characteristics of CNEs by coupling CNEr with existing Bioconductor packages. CNEr is available at Bioconductor ( and maintained at github (

RevDate: 2019-08-30

Li X, An Z, Z Zhang (2019)

Comparison of computational methods for 3D genome analysis at single-cell Hi-C level.

Methods (San Diego, Calif.) pii:S1046-2023(19)30089-1 [Epub ahead of print].

Hi-C is a high-throughput chromosome conformation capture technology that is becoming routine in the literature. Although the price of sequencing has been dropping dramatically, high-resolution Hi-C data are not always an option for many studies, such as in single cells. However, the performance of current computational methods based on Hi-C at the ultra-sparse data condition has yet to be fully assessed. Therefore, in this paper, after briefly surveying the primary computational methods for Hi-C data analysis, we assess the performance of representative methods on data normalization, identification of compartments, Topologically Associating Domains (TADs) and chromatin loops under the condition of ultra-low resolution. We showed that most state-of-the-art methods do not work properly for that condition. Then, we applied the three best-performing methods on real single-cell Hi-C data, and their performance indicates that compartments may be a statistical feature emerging from the cell population, while TADs and chromatin loops may dynamically exist in single cells.

RevDate: 2019-08-27

Abdalla MOA, Yamamoto T, Maehara K, et al (2019)

The Eleanor ncRNAs activate the topological domain of the ESR1 locus to balance against apoptosis.

Nature communications, 10(1):3778 pii:10.1038/s41467-019-11378-4.

MCF7 cells acquire estrogen-independent proliferation after long-term estrogen deprivation (LTED), which recapitulates endocrine therapy resistance. LTED cells can become primed for apoptosis, but the underlying mechanism is largely unknown. We previously reported that Eleanor non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) upregulate the ESR1 gene in LTED cells. Here, we show that Eleanors delineate the topologically associating domain (TAD) of the ESR1 locus in the active nuclear compartment of LTED cells. The TAD interacts with another transcriptionally active TAD, which is 42.9 Mb away from ESR1 and contains a gene encoding the apoptotic transcription factor FOXO3. Inhibition of a promoter-associated Eleanor suppresses all genes inside the Eleanor TAD and the long-range interaction between the two TADs, but keeps FOXO3 active to facilitate apoptosis in LTED cells. These data indicate a role of ncRNAs in chromatin domain regulation, which may underlie the apoptosis-prone nature of therapy-resistant breast cancer cells and could be good therapeutic targets.

RevDate: 2019-09-05

Zhang Y, Li T, Preissl S, et al (2019)

Transcriptionally active HERV-H retrotransposons demarcate topologically associating domains in human pluripotent stem cells.

Nature genetics, 51(9):1380-1388.

Chromatin architecture has been implicated in cell type-specific gene regulatory programs, yet how chromatin remodels during development remains to be fully elucidated. Here, by interrogating chromatin reorganization during human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC) differentiation, we discover a role for the primate-specific endogenous retrotransposon human endogenous retrovirus subfamily H (HERV-H) in creating topologically associating domains (TADs) in hPSCs. Deleting these HERV-H elements eliminates their corresponding TAD boundaries and reduces the transcription of upstream genes, while de novo insertion of HERV-H elements can introduce new TAD boundaries. The ability of HERV-H to create TAD boundaries depends on high transcription, as transcriptional repression of HERV-H elements prevents the formation of boundaries. This ability is not limited to hPSCs, as these actively transcribed HERV-H elements and their corresponding TAD boundaries also appear in pluripotent stem cells from other hominids but not in more distantly related species lacking HERV-H elements. Overall, our results provide direct evidence for retrotransposons in actively shaping cell type- and species-specific chromatin architecture.

RevDate: 2019-09-03

Miura H, Takahashi S, Poonperm R, et al (2019)

Single-cell DNA replication profiling identifies spatiotemporal developmental dynamics of chromosome organization.

Nature genetics, 51(9):1356-1368.

In mammalian cells, chromosomes are partitioned into megabase-sized topologically associating domains (TADs). TADs can be in either A (active) or B (inactive) subnuclear compartments, which exhibit early and late replication timing (RT), respectively. Here, we show that A/B compartments change coordinately with RT changes genome wide during mouse embryonic stem cell (mESC) differentiation. While A to B compartment changes and early to late RT changes were temporally inseparable, B to A changes clearly preceded late to early RT changes and transcriptional activation. Compartments changed primarily by boundary shifting, altering the compartmentalization of TADs facing the A/B compartment interface, which was conserved during reprogramming and confirmed in individual cells by single-cell Repli-seq. Differentiating mESCs altered single-cell Repli-seq profiles gradually but uniformly, transiently resembling RT profiles of epiblast-derived stem cells (EpiSCs), suggesting that A/B compartments might also change gradually but uniformly toward a primed pluripotent state. These results provide insights into how megabase-scale chromosome organization changes in individual cells during differentiation.

RevDate: 2019-08-24

Arnould C, G Legube (2019)

The Secret Life of Chromosome Loops upon DNA Double-Strand Break.

Journal of molecular biology pii:S0022-2836(19)30497-8 [Epub ahead of print].

DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) are harmful lesions that severely challenge genomic integrity, and recent evidence suggests that DSBs occur more frequently on the genome than previously thought. These lesions activate a complex and multilayered response called the DNA damage response, which allows to coordinate their repair with the cell cycle progression. While the mechanistic details of repair processes have been narrowed, thanks to several decades of intense studies, our knowledge of the impact of DSB on chromatin composition and chromosome architecture is still very sparse. However, the recent development of various tools to induce DSB at annotated loci, compatible with next-generation sequencing-based approaches, is opening a new framework to tackle these questions. Here we discuss the influence of initial and DSB-induced chromatin conformation and the strong potential of 3C-based technologies to decipher the contribution of chromosome architecture during DSB repair.

RevDate: 2019-08-10

Yao S, Dong SS, Ding JM, et al (2019)

Sex-specific SNP-SNP interaction analyses within topologically associated domains reveals ANGPT1 as a novel tumor suppressor gene for lung cancer.

Genes, chromosomes & cancer [Epub ahead of print].

Genetic interaction has been recognized to be an important cause of the missing heritability. The topologically associating domain (TAD) is a self-interacting genomic region, and the DNA sequences within a TAD physically interact with each other more frequently. Sex differences influence cancer susceptibility at the genetic level. Here, we performed both regular and sex-specific genetic interaction analyses within TAD to identify susceptibility genes for lung cancer in 5204 lung cancer patients and 7389 controls. We found that one SNP pair, rs4262299-rs1654701, was associated with lung cancer in women after multiple testing corrections (combined P = 8.52 × 10-9). Single-SNP analyses did not detect significant association signals for these two SNPs. Both identified SNPs are located in the intron region of ANGPT1. We further found that 5% of nonsmall cell lung cancer patients have an alteration in ANGPT1, indicated the potential role of ANGPT1 in the neoplastic progression in lung cancer. The expression of ANGPT1 was significantly down-regulated in patients in lung squamous cell carcinoma and lung adenocarcinoma. We checked the interaction effect on the ANGPT1 expression and lung cancer and found that the minor allele "G" of rs1654701 increased ANGPT1 gene expression and decreased lung cancer risk with the increased dosage of "A" of rs4262299, which consistent with the tumor suppressor function of ANGPT1. Survival analyses found that the high expression of ANGPT1 was individually associated with a higher survival probability in lung cancer patients. In summary, our results suggest that ANGPT1 may be a novel tumor suppressor gene for lung cancer.

RevDate: 2019-08-09

Xie T, Zhang FG, Zhang HY, et al (2019)

Biased gene retention during diploidization in Brassica linked to three-dimensional genome organization.

Nature plants, 5(8):822-832.

The non-random three-dimensional (3D) organization of the genome in the nucleus is critical to gene regulation and genome function. Using high-throughput chromatin conformation capture, we generated chromatin interaction maps for Brassica rapa and Brassica oleracea at a high resolution and characterized the conservation and divergence of chromatin organization in these two species. Large-scale chromatin structures, including A/B compartments and topologically associating domains, are notably conserved between B. rapa and B. oleracea, yet their KNOT structures are highly divergent. We found that genes retained in less fractionated subgenomes exhibited stronger interaction strengths, and diploidization-resistant duplicates retained in pairs or triplets are more likely to be colocalized in both B. rapa and B. oleracea. These observations suggest that spatial constraint in duplicated genes is correlated to their biased retention in the diploidization process. In addition, we found strong similarities in the epigenetic modification and Gene Ontology terms of colocalized paralogues, which were largely conserved across B. rapa and B. oleracea, indicating functional constraints on their 3D positioning in the nucleus. This study presents an investigation of the spatial organization of genomes in Brassica and provides insights on the role of 3D organization in the genome evolution of this genus.

RevDate: 2019-08-08

Kim D, An H, Shearer RS, et al (2019)

A principled strategy for mapping enhancers to genes.

Scientific reports, 9(1):11043 pii:10.1038/s41598-019-47521-w.

Mapping enhancers to genes is a fundamental goal of modern biology. We have developed an innovative strategy that maps enhancers to genes in a principled manner. We illustrate its power by applying it to Myrf. Despite being a master regulator of oligodendrocytes, oligodendrocyte enhancers governing Myrf expression remain elusive. Since chromatin conformation capture studies have shown that a gene and its enhancer tend to be found in the same topologically associating domain (TAD), we started with the delineation of the Myrf TAD. A genome-wide map of putative oligodendrocyte enhancers uncovered 6 putative oligodendrocyte enhancers in the Myrf TAD, narrowing down the search space for Myrf enhancers from the entire genome to 6 loci in a principled manner. Epigenome editing experiments revealed that two of them govern Myrf expression for oligodendrocyte development. Our new method is simple, principled, and powerful, providing a systematic way to find enhancers that regulate the expression of a gene of interest. Since it can be applied to most cell types, it would greatly facilitate our effort to unravel transcriptional regulatory networks of diverse cell types.

RevDate: 2019-09-04

Sadowski M, Kraft A, Szalaj P, et al (2019)

Spatial chromatin architecture alteration by structural variations in human genomes at the population scale.

Genome biology, 20(1):148 pii:10.1186/s13059-019-1728-x.

BACKGROUND: The number of reported examples of chromatin architecture alterations involved in the regulation of gene transcription and in disease is increasing. However, no genome-wide testing has been performed to assess the abundance of these events and their importance relative to other factors affecting genome regulation. This is particularly interesting given that a vast majority of genetic variations identified in association studies are located outside coding sequences. This study attempts to address this lack by analyzing the impact on chromatin spatial organization of genetic variants identified in individuals from 26 human populations and in genome-wide association studies.

RESULTS: We assess the tendency of structural variants to accumulate in spatially interacting genomic segments and design an algorithm to model chromatin conformational changes caused by structural variations. We show that differential gene transcription is closely linked to the variation in chromatin interaction networks mediated by RNA polymerase II. We also demonstrate that CTCF-mediated interactions are well conserved across populations, but enriched with disease-associated SNPs. Moreover, we find boundaries of topological domains as relatively frequent targets of duplications, which suggest that these duplications can be an important evolutionary mechanism of genome spatial organization.

CONCLUSIONS: This study assesses the critical impact of genetic variants on the higher-order organization of chromatin folding and provides insight into the mechanisms regulating gene transcription at the population scale, of which local arrangement of chromatin loops seems to be the most significant. It provides the first insight into the variability of the human 3D genome at the population scale.

RevDate: 2019-08-15

Dumur T, Duncan S, Graumann K, et al (2019)

Probing the 3D architecture of the plant nucleus with microscopy approaches: challenges and solutions.

Nucleus (Austin, Tex.), 10(1):181-212.

The eukaryotic cell nucleus is a central organelle whose architecture determines genome function at multiple levels. Deciphering nuclear organizing principles influencing cellular responses and identity is a timely challenge. Despite many similarities between plant and animal nuclei, plant nuclei present intriguing specificities. Complementary to molecular and biochemical approaches, 3D microscopy is indispensable for resolving nuclear architecture. However, novel solutions are required for capturing cell-specific, sub-nuclear and dynamic processes. We provide a pointer for utilising high-to-super-resolution microscopy and image processing to probe plant nuclear architecture in 3D at the best possible spatial and temporal resolution and at quantitative and cell-specific levels. High-end imaging and image-processing solutions allow the community now to transcend conventional practices and benefit from continuously improving approaches. These promise to deliver a comprehensive, 3D view of plant nuclear architecture and to capture spatial dynamics of the nuclear compartment in relation to cellular states and responses. Abbreviations: 3D and 4D: Three and Four dimensional; AI: Artificial Intelligence; ant: antipodal nuclei (ant); CLSM: Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy; CTs: Chromosome Territories; DL: Deep Learning; DLIm: Dynamic Live Imaging; ecn: egg nucleus; FACS: Fluorescence-Activated Cell Sorting; FISH: Fluorescent In Situ Hybridization; FP: Fluorescent Proteins (GFP, RFP, CFP, YFP, mCherry); FRAP: Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching; GPU: Graphics Processing Unit; KEEs: KNOT Engaged Elements; INTACT: Isolation of Nuclei TAgged in specific Cell Types; LADs: Lamin-Associated Domains; ML: Machine Learning; NA: Numerical Aperture; NADs: Nucleolar Associated Domains; PALM: Photo-Activated Localization Microscopy; Pixel: Picture element; pn: polar nuclei; PSF: Point Spread Function; RHF: Relative Heterochromatin Fraction; SIM: Structured Illumination Microscopy; SLIm: Static Live Imaging; SMC: Spore Mother Cell; SNR: Signal to Noise Ratio; SRM: Super-Resolution Microscopy; STED: STimulated Emission Depletion; STORM: STochastic Optical Reconstruction Microscopy; syn: synergid nuclei; TADs: Topologically Associating Domains; Voxel: Volumetric pixel.

RevDate: 2019-08-09

Kim K, Eom J, I Jung (2019)

Characterization of Structural Variations in the Context of 3D Chromatin Structure.

Molecules and cells, 42(7):512-522.

Chromosomes located in the nucleus form discrete units of genetic material composed of DNA and protein complexes. The genetic information is encoded in linear DNA sequences, but its interpretation requires an understanding of threedimensional (3D) structure of the chromosome, in which distant DNA sequences can be juxtaposed by highly condensed chromatin packing in the space of nucleus to precisely control gene expression. Recent technological innovations in exploring higher-order chromatin structure have uncovered organizational principles of the 3D genome and its various biological implications. Very recently, it has been reported that large-scale genomic variations may disrupt higher-order chromatin organization and as a consequence, greatly contribute to disease-specific gene regulation for a range of human diseases. Here, we review recent developments in studying the effect of structural variation in gene regulation, and the detection and the interpretation of structural variations in the context of 3D chromatin structure.

RevDate: 2019-07-30

Caporale AL, Gonda CM, LF Franchini (2019)

Transcriptional Enhancers in the FOXP2 Locus Underwent Accelerated Evolution in the Human Lineage.

Molecular biology and evolution pii:5540333 [Epub ahead of print].

Unique human features such as complex language are the result of molecular evolutionary changes that modified developmental programs of our brain. The human-specific evolution of the forkhead box P2 (FOXP2) gene coding region has been linked to the emergence of speech and language in the human kind. However, little is known about how the expression of FOXP2 is regulated and if its regulatory machinery evolved in a lineage-specific manner in humans. In order to identify FOXP2 regulatory regions containing human-specific changes we used databases of human accelerated non-coding sequences or HARs. We found that the topologically associating domain (TAD) determined using developing human cerebral cortex containing the FOXP2 locus includes two clusters of 12 HARs, placing the locus occupied by FOXP2 among the top regions showing fast acceleration rates in non-coding regions in the human genome. Using in vivo enhancer assays in zebrafish, we found that at least five FOXP2-HARs behave as transcriptional enhancers throughout different developmental stages. In addition, we found that at least two FOXP2-HARs direct the expression of the reporter gene EGFP to foxP2 expressing regions and cells. Moreover, we uncovered two FOXP2-HARs showing reporter expression gain of function in the nervous system when compared with the chimpanzee ortholog sequences. Our results indicate that regulatory sequences in the FOXP2 locus underwent a human-specific evolutionary process suggesting that the transcriptional machinery controlling this gene could have also evolved differentially in the human lineage.

RevDate: 2019-08-01

Despang A, Schöpflin R, Franke M, et al (2019)

Functional dissection of the Sox9-Kcnj2 locus identifies nonessential and instructive roles of TAD architecture.

Nature genetics, 51(8):1263-1271.

The genome is organized in three-dimensional units called topologically associating domains (TADs), through a process dependent on the cooperative action of cohesin and the DNA-binding factor CTCF. Genomic rearrangements of TADs have been shown to cause gene misexpression and disease, but genome-wide depletion of CTCF has no drastic effects on transcription. Here, we investigate TAD function in vivo in mouse limb buds at the Sox9-Kcnj2 locus. We show that the removal of all major CTCF sites at the boundary and within the TAD resulted in a fusion of neighboring TADs, without major effects on gene expression. Gene misexpression and disease phenotypes, however, were achieved by redirecting regulatory activity through inversions and/or the repositioning of boundaries. Thus, TAD structures provide robustness and precision but are not essential for developmental gene regulation. Aberrant disease-related gene activation is not induced by a mere loss of insulation but requires CTCF-dependent redirection of enhancer-promoter contacts.

RevDate: 2019-08-07

Eres IE, Luo K, Hsiao CJ, et al (2019)

Reorganization of 3D genome structure may contribute to gene regulatory evolution in primates.

PLoS genetics, 15(7):e1008278 pii:PGENETICS-D-18-02323.

A growing body of evidence supports the notion that variation in gene regulation plays a crucial role in both speciation and adaptation. However, a comprehensive functional understanding of the mechanisms underlying regulatory evolution remains elusive. In primates, one of the crucial missing pieces of information towards a better understanding of regulatory evolution is a comparative annotation of interactions between distal regulatory elements and promoters. Chromatin conformation capture technologies have enabled genome-wide quantifications of such distal 3D interactions. However, relatively little comparative research in primates has been done using such technologies. To address this gap, we used Hi-C to characterize 3D chromatin interactions in induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from humans and chimpanzees. We also used RNA-seq to collect gene expression data from the same lines. We generally observed that lower-order, pairwise 3D genomic interactions are conserved in humans and chimpanzees, but higher order genomic structures, such as topologically associating domains (TADs), are not as conserved. Inter-species differences in 3D genomic interactions are often associated with gene expression differences between the species. To provide additional functional context to our observations, we considered previously published chromatin data from human stem cells. We found that inter-species differences in 3D genomic interactions, which are also associated with gene expression differences between the species, are enriched for both active and repressive marks. Overall, our data demonstrate that, as expected, an understanding of 3D genome reorganization is key to explaining regulatory evolution.

RevDate: 2019-08-01

Ghavi-Helm Y, Jankowski A, Meiers S, et al (2019)

Highly rearranged chromosomes reveal uncoupling between genome topology and gene expression.

Nature genetics, 51(8):1272-1282.

Chromatin topology is intricately linked to gene expression, yet its functional requirement remains unclear. Here, we comprehensively assessed the interplay between genome topology and gene expression using highly rearranged chromosomes (balancers) spanning ~75% of the Drosophila genome. Using transheterozyte (balancer/wild-type) embryos, we measured allele-specific changes in topology and gene expression in cis, while minimizing trans effects. Through genome sequencing, we resolved eight large nested inversions, smaller inversions, duplications and thousands of deletions. These extensive rearrangements caused many changes to chromatin topology, disrupting long-range loops, topologically associating domains (TADs) and promoter interactions, yet these are not predictive of changes in expression. Gene expression is generally not altered around inversion breakpoints, indicating that mis-appropriate enhancer-promoter activation is a rare event. Similarly, shuffling or fusing TADs, changing intra-TAD connections and disrupting long-range inter-TAD loops does not alter expression for the majority of genes. Our results suggest that properties other than chromatin topology ensure productive enhancer-promoter interactions.

RevDate: 2019-07-24

Rodríguez-Carballo E, Lopez-Delisle L, Yakushiji-Kaminatsui N, et al (2019)

Impact of genome architecture on the functional activation and repression of Hox regulatory landscapes.

BMC biology, 17(1):55 pii:10.1186/s12915-019-0677-x.

BACKGROUND: The spatial organization of the mammalian genome relies upon the formation of chromatin domains of various scales. At the level of gene regulation in cis, collections of enhancer sequences define large regulatory landscapes that usually match with the presence of topologically associating domains (TADs). These domains often contain ranges of enhancers displaying similar or related tissue specificity, suggesting that in some cases, such domains may act as coherent regulatory units, with a global on or off state. By using the HoxD gene cluster, which specifies the topology of the developing limbs via highly orchestrated regulation of gene expression, as a paradigm, we investigated how the arrangement of regulatory domains determines their activity and function.

RESULTS: Proximal and distal cells in the developing limb express different levels of Hoxd genes, regulated by flanking 3' and 5' TADs, respectively. We characterized the effect of large genomic rearrangements affecting these two TADs, including their fusion into a single chromatin domain. We show that, within a single hybrid TAD, the activation of both proximal and distal limb enhancers globally occurred as when both TADs are intact. However, the activity of the 3' TAD in distal cells is generally increased in the fused TAD, when compared to wild type where it is silenced. Also, target gene activity in distal cells depends on whether or not these genes had previously responded to proximal enhancers, which determines the presence or absence of H3K27me3 marks. We also show that the polycomb repressive complex 2 is mainly recruited at the Hox gene cluster and can extend its coverage to far-cis regulatory sequences as long as confined to the neighboring TAD structure.

CONCLUSIONS: We conclude that antagonistic limb proximal and distal enhancers can exert their specific effects when positioned into the same TAD and in the absence of their genuine target genes. We also conclude that removing these target genes reduced the coverage of a regulatory landscape by chromatin marks associated with silencing, which correlates with its prolonged activity in time.

RevDate: 2019-07-12

Mizi A, Gade Gusmao E, A Papantonis (2019)

iHi-C 2.0: A simple approach for mapping native spatial chromatin organisation from low cell numbers.

Methods (San Diego, Calif.) pii:S1046-2023(19)30010-6 [Epub ahead of print].

Genome organization is now understood to be tightly linked to all genomic functions. Thus, the high-resolution mapping of higher-order chromosomal structures via 3C-based approaches has become an integral tool for studying transcriptional and cell cycle regulation, signaling effects or disease onset. Nonetheless, 3C-based protocols are not without caveats, like dependencies on fixation conditions, restriction enzyme pervasiveness in crosslinked chromatin and ligation efficiency. To address some of these caveats, we describe here the streamlined iHi-C 2.0 protocol that allows for the genome-wide interrogation of native spatial chromatin contacts without a need for chemical fixation. This approach improves ligation efficiency and presents minimal material losses, and is thus suitable for analysing samples with limiting cell numbers. Following high throughput sequencing, iHi-C 2.0 generates high signal-to-noise and focal maps of the interactions within and between mammalian chromosomes under native conditions.

RevDate: 2019-08-09

Huang H, Chen ST, Titus KR, et al (2019)

A subset of topologically associating domains fold into mesoscale core-periphery networks.

Scientific reports, 9(1):9526 pii:10.1038/s41598-019-45457-9.

Mammalian genomes are folded into a hierarchy of compartments, topologically associating domains (TADs), subTADs, and long-range looping interactions. The higher-order folding patterns of chromatin contacts within TADs and how they localize to disease-associated single nucleotide variants (daSNVs) remains an open area of investigation. Here, we analyze high-resolution Hi-C data with graph theory to understand possible mesoscale network architecture within chromatin domains. We identify a subset of TADs exhibiting strong core-periphery mesoscale structure in embryonic stem cells, neural progenitor cells, and cortical neurons. Hyper-connected core nodes co-localize with genomic segments engaged in multiple looping interactions and enriched for occupancy of the architectural protein CCCTC binding protein (CTCF). CTCF knockdown and in silico deletion of CTCF-bound core nodes disrupts core-periphery structure, whereas in silico mutation of cell type-specific enhancer or gene nodes has a negligible effect. Importantly, neuropsychiatric daSNVs are significantly more likely to localize with TADs folded into core-periphery networks compared to domains devoid of such structure. Together, our results reveal that a subset of TADs encompasses looping interactions connected into a core-periphery mesoscale network. We hypothesize that daSNVs in the periphery of genome folding networks might preserve global nuclear architecture but cause local topological and functional disruptions contributing to human disease. By contrast, daSNVs co-localized with hyper-connected core nodes might cause severe topological and functional disruptions. Overall, these findings shed new light into the mesoscale network structure of fine scale genome folding within chromatin domains and its link to common genetic variants in human disease.

RevDate: 2019-07-01

Li Y, Wu A, Liu G, et al (2019)

A Review of Methods to Quantify the Genomic Similarity of Topological Associating Domains.

Journal of computational biology : a journal of computational molecular cell biology [Epub ahead of print].

Topologically associating domains (TADs) are the most fundamental elements and significant structures of the eukaryotic genome. Currently, algorithms have been developed to find the TADs. But few algorithms are reported to compare the similarity of TADs between genomes. In this study, mice Hi-C sequencing data of four contrasts were enrolled. Seventeen algorithms, including BPscore, Jaccard index (JI) distance, VI distance, image hash, image subtraction, image variance, and so on, were used to quantify the genomic similarity of TADs. Image subtraction, Euclidean distance, and Manhattan distance were significantly better for TAD difference detection than the others. Deferent Hash (dHash) with the best zoom size ranked the second, followed by improved Hamming distance algorithm and JI distance. Advantages and disadvantages of various algorithms for quantifying the similarity of TADs were compared. Our work could provide the fundament for TADs comparison.

RevDate: 2019-07-23

Zhou J, Ma J, Chen Y, et al (2019)

Robust single-cell Hi-C clustering by convolution- and random-walk-based imputation.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 116(28):14011-14018.

Three-dimensional genome structure plays a pivotal role in gene regulation and cellular function. Single-cell analysis of genome architecture has been achieved using imaging and chromatin conformation capture methods such as Hi-C. To study variation in chromosome structure between different cell types, computational approaches are needed that can utilize sparse and heterogeneous single-cell Hi-C data. However, few methods exist that are able to accurately and efficiently cluster such data into constituent cell types. Here, we describe scHiCluster, a single-cell clustering algorithm for Hi-C contact matrices that is based on imputations using linear convolution and random walk. Using both simulated and real single-cell Hi-C data as benchmarks, scHiCluster significantly improves clustering accuracy when applied to low coverage datasets compared with existing methods. After imputation by scHiCluster, topologically associating domain (TAD)-like structures (TLSs) can be identified within single cells, and their consensus boundaries were enriched at the TAD boundaries observed in bulk cell Hi-C samples. In summary, scHiCluster facilitates visualization and comparison of single-cell 3D genomes.

RevDate: 2019-06-19

Cuadrado A, Giménez-Llorente D, Kojic A, et al (2019)

Specific Contributions of Cohesin-SA1 and Cohesin-SA2 to TADs and Polycomb Domains in Embryonic Stem Cells.

Cell reports, 27(12):3500-3510.e4.

Cohesin exists in two variants carrying either STAG/SA1 or SA2. Here we have addressed their specific contributions to the unique spatial organization of the mouse embryonic stem cell genome, which ensures super-enhancer-dependent transcription of pluripotency factors and repression of lineage-specification genes within Polycomb domains. We find that cohesin-SA2 facilitates Polycomb domain compaction through Polycomb repressing complex 1 (PRC1) recruitment and promotes the establishment of long-range interaction networks between distant Polycomb-bound promoters that are important for gene repression. Cohesin-SA1, in contrast, disrupts these networks, while preserving topologically associating domain (TAD) borders. The diverse effects of both complexes on genome topology may reflect two modes of action of cohesin. One, likely involving loop extrusion, establishes overall genome arrangement in TADs together with CTCF and prevents excessive segregation of same-class compartment regions. The other is required for organization of local transcriptional hubs such as Polycomb domains and super-enhancers, which define cell identity.

RevDate: 2019-07-12

Cattoglio C, Pustova I, Walther N, et al (2019)

Determining cellular CTCF and cohesin abundances to constrain 3D genome models.

eLife, 8: pii:40164.

Achieving a quantitative and predictive understanding of 3D genome architecture remains a major challenge, as it requires quantitative measurements of the key proteins involved. Here, we report the quantification of CTCF and cohesin, two causal regulators of topologically associating domains (TADs) in mammalian cells. Extending our previous imaging studies (Hansen et al., 2017), we estimate bounds on the density of putatively DNA loop-extruding cohesin complexes and CTCF binding site occupancy. Furthermore, co-immunoprecipitation studies of an endogenously tagged subunit (Rad21) suggest the presence of cohesin dimers and/or oligomers. Finally, based on our cell lines with accurately measured protein abundances, we report a method to conveniently determine the number of molecules of any Halo-tagged protein in the cell. We anticipate that our results and the established tool for measuring cellular protein abundances will advance a more quantitative understanding of 3D genome organization, and facilitate protein quantification, key to comprehend diverse biological processes.

RevDate: 2019-07-24

Holzmann J, Politi AZ, Nagasaka K, et al (2019)

Absolute quantification of cohesin, CTCF and their regulators in human cells.

eLife, 8: pii:46269.

The organisation of mammalian genomes into loops and topologically associating domains (TADs) contributes to chromatin structure, gene expression and recombination. TADs and many loops are formed by cohesin and positioned by CTCF. In proliferating cells, cohesin also mediates sister chromatid cohesion, which is essential for chromosome segregation. Current models of chromatin folding and cohesion are based on assumptions of how many cohesin and CTCF molecules organise the genome. Here we have measured absolute copy numbers and dynamics of cohesin, CTCF, NIPBL, WAPL and sororin by mass spectrometry, fluorescence-correlation spectroscopy and fluorescence recovery after photobleaching in HeLa cells. In G1-phase, there are ~250,000 nuclear cohesin complexes, of which ~ 160,000 are chromatin-bound. Comparison with chromatin immunoprecipitation-sequencing data implies that some genomic cohesin and CTCF enrichment sites are unoccupied in single cells at any one time. We discuss the implications of these findings for how cohesin can contribute to genome organisation and cohesion.

RevDate: 2019-07-09
CmpDate: 2019-07-09

Shukron O, Piras V, Noordermeer D, et al (2019)

Statistics of chromatin organization during cell differentiation revealed by heterogeneous cross-linked polymers.

Nature communications, 10(1):2626 pii:10.1038/s41467-019-10402-x.

Chromatin of mammalian nucleus folds into discrete contact enriched regions such as Topologically Associating Domains (TADs). Folding hierarchy and internal organization of TADs is highly dynamic throughout cellular differentiation, and are correlated with gene activation and silencing. To account for multiple interacting TADs, we developed a parsimonious randomly cross-linked (RCL) polymer model that maps high frequency Hi-C encounters within and between TADs into direct loci interactions using cross-links at a given base-pair resolution. We reconstruct three TADs of the mammalian X chromosome for three stages of differentiation. We compute the radius of gyration of TADs and the encounter probability between genomic segments. We found 1) a synchronous compaction and decompaction of TADs throughout differentiation and 2) high order organization into meta-TADs resulting from weak inter-TAD interactions. Finally, the present framework allows to infer transient properties of the chromatin from steady-state statistics embedded in the Hi-C/5C data.

RevDate: 2019-08-23

Zheng H, W Xie (2019)

The role of 3D genome organization in development and cell differentiation.

Nature reviews. Molecular cell biology, 20(9):535-550.

In eukaryotes, the genome does not exist as a linear molecule but instead is hierarchically packaged inside the nucleus. This complex genome organization includes multiscale structural units of chromosome territories, compartments, topologically associating domains, which are often demarcated by architectural proteins such as CTCF and cohesin, and chromatin loops. The 3D organization of chromatin modulates biological processes such as transcription, DNA replication, cell division and meiosis, which are crucial for cell differentiation and animal development. In this Review, we discuss recent progress in our understanding of the general principles of chromatin folding, its regulation and its functions in mammalian development. Specifically, we discuss the dynamics of 3D chromatin and genome organization during gametogenesis, embryonic development, lineage commitment and stem cell differentiation, and focus on the functions of chromatin architecture in transcription regulation. Finally, we discuss the role of 3D genome alterations in the aetiology of developmental disorders and human diseases.

RevDate: 2019-06-30

Qi Y, B Zhang (2019)

Predicting three-dimensional genome organization with chromatin states.

PLoS computational biology, 15(6):e1007024 pii:PCOMPBIOL-D-18-02053.

We introduce a computational model to simulate chromatin structure and dynamics. Starting from one-dimensional genomics and epigenomics data that are available for hundreds of cell types, this model enables de novo prediction of chromatin structures at five-kilo-base resolution. Simulated chromatin structures recapitulate known features of genome organization, including the formation of chromatin loops, topologically associating domains (TADs) and compartments, and are in quantitative agreement with chromosome conformation capture experiments and super-resolution microscopy measurements. Detailed characterization of the predicted structural ensemble reveals the dynamical flexibility of chromatin loops and the presence of cross-talk among neighboring TADs. Analysis of the model's energy function uncovers distinct mechanisms for chromatin folding at various length scales and suggests a need to go beyond simple A/B compartment types to predict specific contacts between regulatory elements using polymer simulations.

RevDate: 2019-08-14

Elias MS, Wright SC, Remenyi J, et al (2019)

EMSY expression affects multiple components of the skin barrier with relevance to atopic dermatitis.

The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology, 144(2):470-481.

BACKGROUND: Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a common, complex, and highly heritable inflammatory skin disease. Genome-wide association studies offer opportunities to identify molecular targets for drug development. A risk locus on chromosome 11q13.5 lies between 2 candidate genes, EMSY and LRRC32 (leucine-rich repeat-containing 32) but the functional mechanisms affecting risk of AD remain unclear.

OBJECTIVES: We sought to apply a combination of genomic and molecular analytic techniques to investigate which genes are responsible for genetic risk at this locus and to define mechanisms contributing to atopic skin disease.

METHODS: We used interrogation of available genomic and chromosome conformation data in keratinocytes, small interfering RNA (siRNA)-mediated knockdown in skin organotypic culture and functional assessment of barrier parameters, mass spectrometric global proteomic analysis and quantitative lipid analysis, electron microscopy of organotypic skin, and immunohistochemistry of human skin samples.

RESULTS: Genomic data indicate active promoters in the genome-wide association study locus and upstream of EMSY; EMSY, LRRC32, and intergenic variants all appear to be within a single topologically associating domain. siRNA-knockdown of EMSY in organotypic culture leads to enhanced development of barrier function, reflecting increased expression of structural and functional proteins, including filaggrin and filaggrin-2, as well as long-chain ceramides. Conversely, overexpression of EMSY in keratinocytes leads to a reduction in markers of barrier formation. Skin biopsy samples from patients with AD show greater EMSY staining in the nucleus, which is consistent with an increased functional effect of this transcriptional control protein.

CONCLUSION: Our findings demonstrate an important role for EMSY in transcriptional regulation and skin barrier formation, supporting EMSY inhibition as a therapeutic approach.

RevDate: 2019-07-25
CmpDate: 2019-07-09

van Bemmel JG, Galupa R, Gard C, et al (2019)

The bipartite TAD organization of the X-inactivation center ensures opposing developmental regulation of Tsix and Xist.

Nature genetics, 51(6):1024-1034.

The mouse X-inactivation center (Xic) locus represents a powerful model for understanding the links between genome architecture and gene regulation, with the non-coding genes Xist and Tsix showing opposite developmental expression patterns while being organized as an overlapping sense/antisense unit. The Xic is organized into two topologically associating domains (TADs) but the role of this architecture in orchestrating cis-regulatory information remains elusive. To explore this, we generated genomic inversions that swap the Xist/Tsix transcriptional unit and place their promoters in each other's TAD. We found that this led to a switch in their expression dynamics: Xist became precociously and ectopically upregulated, both in male and female pluripotent cells, while Tsix expression aberrantly persisted during differentiation. The topological partitioning of the Xic is thus critical to ensure proper developmental timing of X inactivation. Our study illustrates how the genomic architecture of cis-regulatory landscapes can affect the regulation of mammalian developmental processes.

RevDate: 2019-06-14

Redolfi J, Zhan Y, Valdes-Quezada C, et al (2019)

DamC reveals principles of chromatin folding in vivo without crosslinking and ligation.

Nature structural & molecular biology, 26(6):471-480.

Current understanding of chromosome folding is largely reliant on chromosome conformation capture (3C)-based experiments, where chromosomal interactions are detected as ligation products after chromatin crosslinking. To measure chromosome structure in vivo, quantitatively and without crosslinking and ligation, we implemented a modified version of DNA adenine methyltransferase identification (DamID) named DamC, which combines DNA methylation-based detection of chromosomal interactions with next-generation sequencing and biophysical modeling of methylation kinetics. DamC performed in mouse embryonic stem cells provides the first in vivo validation of the existence of topologically associating domains (TADs), CTCF loops and confirms 3C-based measurements of the scaling of contact probabilities. Combining DamC with transposon-mediated genomic engineering shows that new loops can be formed between ectopic and endogenous CTCF sites, which redistributes physical interactions within TADs. DamC provides the first crosslinking- and ligation-free demonstration of the existence of key structural features of chromosomes and provides novel insights into how chromosome structure within TADs can be manipulated.

RevDate: 2019-09-05

Bompadre O, G Andrey (2019)

Chromatin topology in development and disease.

Current opinion in genetics & development, 55:32-38 pii:S0959-437X(18)30150-3 [Epub ahead of print].

The discovery of domains of preferential interaction or Topologically Associating Domains (TADs) has provided a framework to understand the relation between enhancers and promoters within intricate regulatory landscapes. It has also enabled the conceptualization of the effect of non-coding structural variants on TADs structure and insulation and reveal new patho-mechanisms leading to disease. Here, we will review current knowledge on enhancer-promoter communication in relation to TAD structure. In particular, we will discuss how enhancer-promoter interaction dynamics is established within or outside of TADs. We will further provide an overview of how mutations affect the normal organization of the genome and how it impacts the normal ability of enhancers to induce transcription at their cognate promoters in disease. Finally, we will discuss the future directions to be explored to understand the mutual influences between 3D chromatin topology and gene regulation.

RevDate: 2019-06-10

Borsos M, Perricone SM, Schauer T, et al (2019)

Genome-lamina interactions are established de novo in the early mouse embryo.

Nature, 569(7758):729-733.

In mammals, the emergence of totipotency after fertilization involves extensive rearrangements of the spatial positioning of the genome1,2. However, the contribution of spatial genome organization to the regulation of developmental programs is unclear3. Here we generate high-resolution maps of genomic interactions with the nuclear lamina (a filamentous meshwork that lines the inner nuclear membrane) in mouse pre-implantation embryos. We reveal that nuclear organization is not inherited from the maternal germline but is instead established de novo shortly after fertilization. The two parental genomes establish lamina-associated domains (LADs)4 with different features that converge after the 8-cell stage. We find that the mechanism of LAD establishment is unrelated to DNA replication. Instead, we show that paternal LAD formation in zygotes is prevented by ectopic expression of Kdm5b, which suggests that LAD establishment may be dependent on remodelling of H3K4 methylation. Our data suggest a step-wise assembly model whereby early LAD formation precedes consolidation of topologically associating domains.

RevDate: 2019-07-20
CmpDate: 2019-07-09

Dellino GI, Palluzzi F, Chiariello AM, et al (2019)

Release of paused RNA polymerase II at specific loci favors DNA double-strand-break formation and promotes cancer translocations.

Nature genetics, 51(6):1011-1023.

It is not clear how spontaneous DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) form and are processed in normal cells, and whether they predispose to cancer-associated translocations. We show that DSBs in normal mammary cells form upon release of paused RNA polymerase II (Pol II) at promoters, 5' splice sites and active enhancers, and are processed by end-joining in the absence of a canonical DNA-damage response. Logistic and causal-association models showed that Pol II pausing at long genes is the main predictor and determinant of DSBs. Damaged introns with paused Pol II-pS5, TOP2B and XRCC4 are enriched in translocation breakpoints, and map at topologically associating domain boundary-flanking regions showing high interaction frequencies with distal loci. Thus, in unperturbed growth conditions, release of paused Pol II at specific loci and chromatin territories favors DSB formation, leading to chromosomal translocations.

RevDate: 2019-05-22

Lesage A, Dahirel V, Victor JM, et al (2019)

Polymer coil-globule phase transition is a universal folding principle of Drosophila epigenetic domains.

Epigenetics & chromatin, 12(1):28 pii:10.1186/s13072-019-0269-6.

BACKGROUND: Localized functional domains within chromosomes, known as topologically associating domains (TADs), have been recently highlighted. In Drosophila, TADs are biochemically defined by epigenetic marks, this suggesting that the 3D arrangement may be the "missing link" between epigenetics and gene activity. Recent observations (Boettiger et al. in Nature 529(7586):418-422, 2016) provide access to structural features of these domains with unprecedented resolution thanks to super-resolution experiments. In particular, they give access to the distribution of the radii of gyration for domains of different linear length and associated with different transcriptional activity states: active, inactive or repressed. Intriguingly, the observed scaling laws lack consistent interpretation in polymer physics.

RESULTS: We develop a new methodology conceived to extract the best information from such super-resolution data by exploiting the whole distribution of gyration radii, and to place these experimental results on a theoretical framework. We show that the experimental data are compatible with the finite-size behavior of a self-attracting polymer. The same generic polymer model leads to quantitative differences between active, inactive and repressed domains. Active domains behave as pure polymer coils, while inactive and repressed domains both lie at the coil-globule crossover. For the first time, the "color-specificity" of both the persistence length and the mean interaction energy are estimated, leading to important differences between epigenetic states.

CONCLUSION: These results point toward a crucial role of criticality to enhance the system responsivity, resulting in both energy transitions and structural rearrangements. We get strong indications that epigenetically induced changes in nucleosome-nucleosome interaction can cause chromatin to shift between different activity states.

RevDate: 2019-08-21

Battle SL, Doni Jayavelu N, Azad RN, et al (2019)

Enhancer Chromatin and 3D Genome Architecture Changes from Naive to Primed Human Embryonic Stem Cell States.

Stem cell reports, 12(5):1129-1144.

During mammalian embryogenesis, changes in morphology and gene expression are concurrent with epigenomic reprogramming. Using human embryonic stem cells representing the preimplantation blastocyst (naive) and postimplantation epiblast (primed), our data in 2iL/I/F naive cells demonstrate that a substantial portion of known human enhancers are premarked by H3K4me1, providing an enhanced open chromatin state in naive pluripotency. The 2iL/I/F enhancer repertoire occupies 9% of the genome, three times that of primed cells, and can exist in broad chromatin domains over 50 kb. Enhancer chromatin states are largely poised. Seventy-seven percent of 2iL/I/F enhancers are decommissioned in a stepwise manner as cells become primed. While primed topologically associating domains are largely unaltered upon differentiation, naive 2iL/I/F domains expand across primed boundaries, affecting three-dimensional genome architecture. Differential topologically associating domain edges coincide with 2iL/I/F H3K4me1 enrichment. Our results suggest that naive-derived 2iL/I/F cells have a unique chromatin landscape, which may reflect early embryogenesis.

RevDate: 2019-05-08

Delaneau O, Zazhytska M, Borel C, et al (2019)

Chromatin three-dimensional interactions mediate genetic effects on gene expression.

Science (New York, N.Y.), 364(6439):.

Studying the genetic basis of gene expression and chromatin organization is key to characterizing the effect of genetic variability on the function and structure of the human genome. Here we unravel how genetic variation perturbs gene regulation using a dataset combining activity of regulatory elements, gene expression, and genetic variants across 317 individuals and two cell types. We show that variability in regulatory activity is structured at the intra- and interchromosomal levels within 12,583 cis-regulatory domains and 30 trans-regulatory hubs that highly reflect the local (that is, topologically associating domains) and global (that is, open and closed chromatin compartments) nuclear chromatin organization. These structures delimit cell type-specific regulatory networks that control gene expression and coexpression and mediate the genetic effects of cis- and trans-acting regulatory variants on genes.

RevDate: 2019-05-10

Yu J, Hu M, C Li (2019)

Joint analyses of multi-tissue Hi-C and eQTL data demonstrate close spatial proximity between eQTLs and their target genes.

BMC genetics, 20(1):43 pii:10.1186/s12863-019-0744-x.

BACKGROUND: Gene regulation is important for cells and tissues to function. It has been studied from two aspects at the genomic level, the identification of expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs) and identification of long-range chromatin interactions. It is important to understand their relationship, such as whether eQTLs regulate their target genes through physical chromatin interaction. Although chromatin interactions have been widely believed to be one of the main mechanisms underlying eQTLs, most evidence came from studies of cell lines and yet no direct evidence exists for tissues.

RESULTS: We performed various joint analyses of eQTL and high-throughput chromatin conformation capture (Hi-C) data from 11 human primary tissue types and 2 human cell lines. We found that chromatin interaction frequency is positively associated with the number of genes that have eQTLs and that eQTLs and their target genes tend to fall into the same topologically associating domain (TAD). These results are consistent across all tissues and cell lines we evaluated. Moreover, in 6 out of 11 tissues (aorta, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, hippocampus, pancreas, small bowel, and spleen), tissue-specific eQTLs are significantly enriched in tissue-specific frequently interacting regions (FIREs).

CONCLUSIONS: Our data have demonstrated the close spatial proximity between eQTLs and their target genes among multiple human primary tissues.

RevDate: 2019-05-02

Majumder K, Boftsi M, DJ Pintel (2019)

Viral Chromosome Conformation Capture (V3C) Assays for Identifying Trans-interaction Sites between Lytic Viruses and the Cellular Genome.

Bio-protocol, 9(6):.

The folding mechanisms of the mammalian genome package our genetic material into the nucleus, and in doing so, dictate its appropriate replication and expression. Chromosome conformation capture technology has enabled the dissection of the folding principles of the cellular genome. This has led to a better understanding of the role played by architectural proteins in forming and dissolving 3D-chromatin-structure. These assays are based on the principle of crosslinking distant cellular sites that are proximal to each other in 3D space using formaldehyde followed by digestion of formed hybrid DNA junctions. Invading viruses, such as the lytic parvovirus Minute Virus of Mice (MVM), establish distinct replication centers within the nuclear environment at cellular sites that preferentially undergo DNA damage, but do not integrate into the cellular DNA. We have adapted chromosome conformation capture technology to study the trans-interaction between MVM and the cellular genome, which we have dubbed V3C, which can be extended to a whole-genome analysis we term V3C-seq. This protocol describes the procedure for performing, as well as analyzing V3C-seq assays, and can be adapted for mapping the cellular interaction sites of any non-integrating DNA virus.

RevDate: 2019-05-22

Liu G, A Dean (2019)

Enhancer long-range contacts: The multi-adaptor protein LDB1 is the tie that binds.

Biochimica et biophysica acta. Gene regulatory mechanisms, 1862(6):625-633.

The eukaryotic genome is organized at varying levels into chromosome territories, transcriptional compartments and topologically associating domains (TADs), which are architectural features largely shared between different cell types and across species. In contrast, within TADs, chromatin loops connect enhancers and their target genes to establish unique transcriptomes that distinguish cells and tissues from each other and underlie development and differentiation. How these tissue-specific and temporal stage-specific long-range contacts are formed and maintained is a fundamental question in biology. The widely expressed Lim domain binding 1 protein, LDB1, plays a critical role in connecting enhancers and genes by forming complexes with cell-type specificity across diverse developmental pathways including neurogenesis, cardiogenesis, retinogenesis and hematopoiesis. Here we review the multiple roles of LDB1 in cell fate determination and in chromatin loop formation, with an emphasis on mammalian systems, to illuminate how LDB1 functions in normal cells and in diseases such as cancer.

RevDate: 2019-06-14
CmpDate: 2019-06-10

Paulsen J, Liyakat Ali TM, Nekrasov M, et al (2019)

Long-range interactions between topologically associating domains shape the four-dimensional genome during differentiation.

Nature genetics, 51(5):835-843.

Genomic information is selectively used to direct spatial and temporal gene expression during differentiation. Interactions between topologically associating domains (TADs) and between chromatin and the nuclear lamina organize and position chromosomes in the nucleus. However, how these genomic organizers together shape genome architecture is unclear. Here, using a dual-lineage differentiation system, we report long-range TAD-TAD interactions that form constitutive and variable TAD cliques. A differentiation-coupled relationship between TAD cliques and lamina-associated domains suggests that TAD cliques stabilize heterochromatin at the nuclear periphery. We also provide evidence of dynamic TAD cliques during mouse embryonic stem-cell differentiation and somatic cell reprogramming and of inter-TAD associations in single-cell high-resolution chromosome conformation capture (Hi-C) data. TAD cliques represent a level of four-dimensional genome conformation that reinforces the silencing of repressed developmental genes.

RevDate: 2019-05-08

Ma CY, Madden P, Gontarz P, et al (2019)

FeatSNP: An Interactive Database for Brain-Specific Epigenetic Annotation of Human SNPs.

Frontiers in genetics, 10:262.

FeatSNP is an online tool and a curated database for exploring 81 million common SNPs' potential functional impact on the human brain. FeatSNP uses the brain transcriptomes of the human population to improve functional annotation of human SNPs by integrating transcription factor binding prediction, public eQTL information, and brain specific epigenetic landscape, as well as information of Topologically Associating Domains (TADs). FeatSNP supports both single and batched SNP searching, and its interactive user interface enables users to explore the functional annotations and generate publication-quality visualization results. FeatSNP is freely available on the internet at with all major web browsers supported.

RevDate: 2019-04-18

Szabo Q, Bantignies F, G Cavalli (2019)

Principles of genome folding into topologically associating domains.

Science advances, 5(4):eaaw1668 pii:aaw1668.

Understanding the mechanisms that underlie chromosome folding within cell nuclei is essential to determine the relationship between genome structure and function. The recent application of "chromosome conformation capture" techniques has revealed that the genome of many species is organized into domains of preferential internal chromatin interactions called "topologically associating domains" (TADs). This chromosome chromosome folding has emerged as a key feature of higher-order genome organization and function through evolution. Although TADs have now been described in a wide range of organisms, they appear to have specific characteristics in terms of size, structure, and proteins involved in their formation. Here, we depict the main features of these domains across species and discuss the relation between chromatin structure, genome activity, and epigenome, highlighting mechanistic principles of TAD formation. We also consider the potential influence of TADs in genome evolution.

RevDate: 2019-04-15

Luo H, Sobh A, Vulpe CD, et al (2019)

HOX Loci Focused CRISPR/sgRNA Library Screening Identifying Critical CTCF Boundaries.

Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE.

CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF)-mediated stable topologically associating domains (TADs) play a critical role in constraining interactions of DNA elements that are located in neighboring TADs. CTCF plays an important role in regulating the spatial and temporal expression of HOX genes that control embryonic development, body patterning, hematopoiesis, and leukemogenesis. However, it remains largely unknown whether and how HOX loci associated CTCF boundaries regulate chromatin organization and HOX gene expression. In the current protocol, a specific sgRNA pooled library targeting all CTCF binding sites in the HOXA/B/C/D loci has been generated to examine the effects of disrupting CTCF-associated chromatin boundaries on TAD formation and HOX gene expression. Through CRISPR-Cas9 genetic screening, the CTCF binding site located between HOXA7/HOXA9 genes (CBS7/9) has been identified as a critical regulator of oncogenic chromatin domain, as well as being important for maintaining ectopic HOX gene expression patterns in MLL-rearranged acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Thus, this sgRNA library screening approach provides novel insights into CTCF mediated genome organization in specific gene loci and also provides a basis for the functional characterization of the annotated genetic regulatory elements, both coding and noncoding, during normal biological processes in the post-human genome project era.

RevDate: 2019-05-03

Laugsch M, Bartusel M, Rehimi R, et al (2019)

Modeling the Pathological Long-Range Regulatory Effects of Human Structural Variation with Patient-Specific hiPSCs.

Cell stem cell, 24(5):736-752.e12.

The pathological consequences of structural variants disrupting 3D genome organization can be difficult to elucidate in vivo due to differences in gene dosage sensitivity between mice and humans. This is illustrated by branchiooculofacial syndrome (BOFS), a rare congenital disorder caused by heterozygous mutations within TFAP2A, a neural crest regulator for which humans, but not mice, are haploinsufficient. Here, we present a BOFS patient carrying a heterozygous inversion with one breakpoint located within a topologically associating domain (TAD) containing enhancers essential for TFAP2A expression in human neural crest cells (hNCCs). Using patient-specific hiPSCs, we show that, although the inversion shuffles the TFAP2A hNCC enhancers with novel genes within the same TAD, this does not result in enhancer adoption. Instead, the inversion disconnects one TFAP2A allele from its cognate enhancers, leading to monoallelic and haploinsufficient TFAP2A expression in patient hNCCs. Our work illustrates the power of hiPSC differentiation to unveil long-range pathomechanisms.

RevDate: 2019-04-29
CmpDate: 2019-04-29

Yang M, Vesterlund M, Siavelis I, et al (2019)

Proteogenomics and Hi-C reveal transcriptional dysregulation in high hyperdiploid childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

Nature communications, 10(1):1519 pii:10.1038/s41467-019-09469-3.

Hyperdiploidy, i.e. gain of whole chromosomes, is one of the most common genetic features of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), but its pathogenetic impact is poorly understood. Here, we report a proteogenomic analysis on matched datasets from genomic profiling, RNA-sequencing, and mass spectrometry-based analysis of >8,000 genes and proteins as well as Hi-C of primary patient samples from hyperdiploid and ETV6/RUNX1-positive pediatric ALL. We show that CTCF and cohesin, which are master regulators of chromatin architecture, display low expression in hyperdiploid ALL. In line with this, a general genome-wide dysregulation of gene expression in relation to topologically associating domain (TAD) borders were seen in the hyperdiploid group. Furthermore, Hi-C of a limited number of hyperdiploid childhood ALL cases revealed that 2/4 cases displayed a clear loss of TAD boundary strength and 3/4 showed reduced insulation at TAD borders, with putative leukemogenic effects.

RevDate: 2019-06-27

Ye Y, Gao L, S Zhang (2019)

MSTD: an efficient method for detecting multi-scale topological domains from symmetric and asymmetric 3D genomic maps.

Nucleic acids research, 47(11):e65.

The chromosome conformation capture (3C) technique and its variants have been employed to reveal the existence of a hierarchy of structures in three-dimensional (3D) chromosomal architecture, including compartments, topologically associating domains (TADs), sub-TADs and chromatin loops. However, existing methods for domain detection were only designed based on symmetric Hi-C maps, ignoring long-range interaction structures between domains. To this end, we proposed a generic and efficient method to identify multi-scale topological domains (MSTD), including cis- and trans-interacting regions, from a variety of 3D genomic datasets. We first applied MSTD to detect promoter-anchored interaction domains (PADs) from promoter capture Hi-C datasets across 17 primary blood cell types. The boundaries of PADs are significantly enriched with one or the combination of multiple epigenetic factors. Moreover, PADs between functionally similar cell types are significantly conserved in terms of domain regions and expression states. Cell type-specific PADs involve in distinct cell type-specific activities and regulatory events by dynamic interactions within them. We also employed MSTD to define multi-scale domains from typical symmetric Hi-C datasets and illustrated its distinct superiority to the-state-of-art methods in terms of accuracy, flexibility and efficiency.

RevDate: 2019-06-04
CmpDate: 2019-06-04

Braun R, Ronquist S, Wangsa D, et al (2019)

Single Chromosome Aneuploidy Induces Genome-Wide Perturbation of Nuclear Organization and Gene Expression.

Neoplasia (New York, N.Y.), 21(4):401-412.

Chromosomal aneuploidy is a defining feature of carcinomas and results in tumor-entity specific genomic imbalances. For instance, most sporadic colorectal carcinomas carry extra copies of chromosome 7, an aneuploidy that emerges already in premalignant adenomas, and is maintained throughout tumor progression and in derived cell lines. A comprehensive understanding on how chromosomal aneuploidy affects nuclear organization and gene expression, i.e., the nucleome, remains elusive. We now analyzed a cell line established from healthy colon mucosa with a normal karyotype (46,XY) and its isogenic derived cell line that acquired an extra copy of chromosome 7 as its sole anomaly (47,XY,+7). We studied structure/function relationships consequent to aneuploidization using genome-wide chromosome conformation capture (Hi-C), RNA sequencing and protein profiling. The gain of chromosome 7 resulted in an increase of transcript levels of resident genes as well as genome-wide gene and protein expression changes. The Hi-C analysis showed that the extra copy of chromosome 7 is reflected in more interchromosomal contacts between the triploid chromosomes. Chromatin organization changes are observed genome-wide, as determined by changes in A/B compartmentalization and topologically associating domain (TAD) boundaries. Most notably, chromosome 4 shows a profound loss of chromatin organization, and chromosome 14 contains a large A/B compartment switch region, concurrent with resident gene expression changes. No changes to the nuclear position of the additional chromosome 7 territory were observed when measuring distances of chromosome painting probes by interphase FISH. Genome and protein data showed enrichment in signaling pathways crucial for malignant transformation, such as the HGF/MET-axis. We conclude that a specific chromosomal aneuploidy has profound impact on nuclear structure and function, both locally and genome-wide. Our study provides a benchmark for the analysis of cancer nucleomes with complex karyotypes.

RevDate: 2019-08-16
CmpDate: 2019-08-16

Huynh L, F Hormozdiari (2019)

TAD fusion score: discovery and ranking the contribution of deletions to genome structure.

Genome biology, 20(1):60 pii:10.1186/s13059-019-1666-7.

Deletions that fuse two adjacent topologically associating domains (TADs) can cause severe developmental disorders. We provide a formal method to quantify deletions based on their potential disruption of the three-dimensional genome structure, denoted as the TAD fusion score. Furthermore, we show that deletions that cause TAD fusion are rare and under negative selection in the general population. Finally, we show that our method correctly gives higher scores to deletions reported to cause various disorders, including developmental disorders and cancer, in comparison to the deletions reported in the 1000 Genomes Project. The TAD fusion score tool is publicly available at .

RevDate: 2019-07-09
CmpDate: 2019-07-09

Nagai LAE, Park SJ, K Nakai (2019)

Analyzing the 3D chromatin organization coordinating with gene expression regulation in B-cell lymphoma.

BMC medical genomics, 11(Suppl 7):127 pii:10.1186/s12920-018-0437-8.

BACKGROUND: Eukaryotes compact chromosomes densely and non-randomly, forming three-dimensional structures. Alterations of the chromatin structures are often associated with diseases. In particular, aggressive cancer development from the disruption of the humoral immune system presents abnormal gene regulation which is accompanied by chromatin reorganizations. How the chromatin structures orchestrate the gene expression regulation is still poorly understood. Herein, we focus on chromatin dynamics in normal and abnormal B cell lymphocytes, and investigate its functional impact on the regulation of gene expression.

METHODS: We conducted an integrative analysis using publicly available multi-omics data that include Hi-C, RNA-seq and ChIP-seq experiments with normal B cells, lymphoma and ES cells. We processed and re-analyzed the data exhaustively and combined different scales of genome structures with transcriptomic and epigenetic features.

RESULTS: We found that the chromatin organizations are highly preserved among the cells. 5.2% of genes at the specific repressive compartment in normal pro-B cells were switched to the permissive compartment in lymphoma along with increased gene expression. The genes are involved in B-cell related biological processes. Remarkably, the boundaries of topologically associating domains were not enriched by CTCF motif, but significantly enriched with Prdm1 motif that is known to be the key factor of B-cell dysfunction in aggressive lymphoma.

CONCLUSIONS: This study shows evidence of a complex relationship between chromatin reorganization and gene regulation. However, an unknown mechanism may exist to restrict the structural and functional changes of genomic regions and cognate genes in a specific manner. Our findings suggest the presence of an intricate crosstalk between the higher-order chromatin structure and cancer development.

RevDate: 2019-08-15

Chen D, EP Lei (2019)

Function and regulation of chromatin insulators in dynamic genome organization.

Current opinion in cell biology, 58:61-68.

Chromatin insulators are DNA-protein complexes that play a crucial role in regulating chromatin organization. Within the past two years, a plethora of genome-wide conformation capture studies have helped reveal that insulators are necessary for proper genome-wide organization of topologically associating domains, which are formed in a manner distinct from that of compartments. These studies have also provided novel insights into the mechanics of how CTCF/cohesin-dependent loops form in mammals, strongly supporting the loop extrusion model. In combination with single-cell imaging approaches in both Drosophila and mammals, the dynamics of insulator-mediated chromatin interactions are also coming to light. Insulator-dependent structures vary across individual cells and tissues, highlighting the need to study the regulation of insulators in particular temporal and spatial contexts throughout development.

RevDate: 2019-08-21
CmpDate: 2019-08-21

Liu T, Porter J, Zhao C, et al (2019)

TADKB: Family classification and a knowledge base of topologically associating domains.

BMC genomics, 20(1):217 pii:10.1186/s12864-019-5551-2.

BACKGROUND: Topologically associating domains (TADs) are considered the structural and functional units of the genome. However, there is a lack of an integrated resource for TADs in the literature where researchers can obtain family classifications and detailed information about TADs.

RESULTS: We built an online knowledge base TADKB integrating knowledge for TADs in eleven cell types of human and mouse. For each TAD, TADKB provides the predicted three-dimensional (3D) structures of chromosomes and TADs, and detailed annotations about the protein-coding genes and long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) existent in each TAD. Besides the 3D chromosomal structures inferred by population Hi-C, the single-cell haplotype-resolved chromosomal 3D structures of 17 GM12878 cells are also integrated in TADKB. A user can submit query gene/lncRNA ID/sequence to search for the TAD(s) that contain(s) the query gene or lncRNA. We also classified TADs into families. To achieve that, we used the TM-scores between reconstructed 3D structures of TADs as structural similarities and the Pearson's correlation coefficients between the fold enrichment of chromatin states as functional similarities. All of the TADs in one cell type were clustered based on structural and functional similarities respectively using the spectral clustering algorithm with various predefined numbers of clusters. We have compared the overlapping TADs from structural and functional clusters and found that most of the TADs in the functional clusters with depleted chromatin states are clustered into one or two structural clusters. This novel finding indicates a connection between the 3D structures of TADs and their DNA functions in terms of chromatin states.

CONCLUSION: TADKB is available at .

RevDate: 2019-04-05
CmpDate: 2019-04-05

Ulianov SV, Doronin SA, Khrameeva EE, et al (2019)

Nuclear lamina integrity is required for proper spatial organization of chromatin in Drosophila.

Nature communications, 10(1):1176 pii:10.1038/s41467-019-09185-y.

How the nuclear lamina (NL) impacts on global chromatin architecture is poorly understood. Here, we show that NL disruption in Drosophila S2 cells leads to chromatin compaction and repositioning from the nuclear envelope. This increases the chromatin density in a fraction of topologically-associating domains (TADs) enriched in active chromatin and enhances interactions between active and inactive chromatin. Importantly, upon NL disruption the NL-associated TADs become more acetylated at histone H3 and less compact, while background transcription is derepressed. Two-colour FISH confirms that a TAD becomes less compact following its release from the NL. Finally, polymer simulations show that chromatin binding to the NL can per se compact attached TADs. Collectively, our findings demonstrate a dual function of the NL in shaping the 3D genome. Attachment of TADs to the NL makes them more condensed but decreases the overall chromatin density in the nucleus by stretching interphase chromosomes.

RevDate: 2019-08-24

Al Bkhetan Z, Kadlof M, Kraft A, et al (2019)

Machine learning polymer models of three-dimensional chromatin organization in human lymphoblastoid cells.

Methods (San Diego, Calif.), 166:83-90.

We present machine learning models of human genome three-dimensional structure that combine one dimensional (linear) sequence specificity, epigenomic information, and transcription factor binding profiles, with the polymer-based biophysical simulations in order to explain the extensive long-range chromatin looping observed in ChIA-PET experiments for lymphoblastoid cells. Random Forest, Gradient Boosting Machine (GBM), and Deep Learning models were constructed and evaluated, when predicting high-resolution interactions within Topologically Associating Domains (TADs). The predicted interactions are consistent with the experimental long-read ChIA-PET interactions mediated by CTCF and RNAPOL2 for GM12878 cell line. The contribution of sequence information and chromatin state defined by epigenomic features to the prediction task is analyzed and reported, when using them separately and combined. Furthermore, we design three-dimensional models of chromatin contact domains (CCDs) using real (ChIA-PET) and predicted looping interactions. Initial results show a similarity between both types of 3D computational models (constructed from experimental or predicted interactions). This observation confirms the association between genome sequence, epigenomic and transcription factor profiles, and three-dimensional interactions.

RevDate: 2019-04-05

Zaborowski R, B Wilczyński (2019)

BPscore: An Effective Metric for Meaningful Comparisons of Structural Chromosome Segmentations.

Journal of computational biology : a journal of computational molecular cell biology, 26(4):305-314.

Studying the three-dimensional structure of chromosomes is an emerging field flourishing in recent years because of rapid development of experimental approaches for studying chromosomal contacts. This has led to numerous studies providing results of segmentation of chromosome sequences of different species into so-called topologically associating domains (TADs). As the number of such studies grows steadily and many of them make claims about the perceived differences between TAD structures observed in different conditions, there is a growing need for good measures of similarity (or dissimilarity) between such segmentations. We provide here a bipartite (BP) score, which is a relatively simple distance metric based on the bipartite matching between two segmentations. In this article, we provide the rationale behind choosing specifically this function and show its results on several different data sets, both simulated and experimental. We show that not only the BP score is a proper metric satisfying the triangle inequality, but also that it is providing good granularity of scores for typical situations occurring between different TAD segmentations. We also introduce local variant of the BP metric and show that in actual comparisons between experimental data sets, the local BP score is correlating with the observed changes in gene expression and genome methylation. In summary, we consider the BP score a good foundation for analyzing the dynamics of chromosome structures. The methodology we present in this study could be used by many researchers in their ongoing analyses, making it a popular and useful tool.

RevDate: 2019-03-03

Wang C, Nanni L, Novakovic B, et al (2019)

Extensive epigenomic integration of the glucocorticoid response in primary human monocytes and in vitro derived macrophages.

Scientific reports, 9(1):2772 pii:10.1038/s41598-019-39395-9.

Glucocorticoid receptor is a transcription factor that is ubiquitously expressed. Glucocorticoids are circadian steroids that regulate a wide range of bodily functions, including immunity. Here we report that synthetic glucocorticoids affect 1035 mRNAs in isolated healthy human blood monocytes but only 165 in the respective six day-old monocyte-derived macrophages. The majority of the glucocorticoid response in monocytes concerns genes that are dynamic upon monocyte to macrophage differentiation, whereby macrophage-like mRNA levels are often reached in monocytes within four hours of treatment. Concomitantly, over 5000 chromosomal H3K27ac regions undergo remodelling, of which 60% involve increased H3K27ac signal. We find that chromosomal glucocorticoid receptor binding sites correlate with positive but not with negative local epigenomic effects. To investigate further we assigned our data to topologically associating domains (TADs). This shows that about 10% of macrophage TADs harbour at least one GR binding site and that half of all the glucocorticoid-induced H3K27ac regions are confined to these TADs. Our analyses are therefore consistent with the notion that TADs naturally accommodate information from sets of distal glucocorticoid response elements.

RevDate: 2019-06-13

Finn EH, Pegoraro G, Brandão HB, et al (2019)

Extensive Heterogeneity and Intrinsic Variation in Spatial Genome Organization.

Cell, 176(6):1502-1515.e10.

Several general principles of global 3D genome organization have recently been established, including non-random positioning of chromosomes and genes in the cell nucleus, distinct chromatin compartments, and topologically associating domains (TADs). However, the extent and nature of cell-to-cell and cell-intrinsic variability in genome architecture are still poorly characterized. Here, we systematically probe heterogeneity in genome organization. High-throughput optical mapping of several hundred intra-chromosomal interactions in individual human fibroblasts demonstrates low association frequencies, which are determined by genomic distance, higher-order chromatin architecture, and chromatin environment. The structure of TADs is variable between individual cells, and inter-TAD associations are common. Furthermore, single-cell analysis reveals independent behavior of individual alleles in single nuclei. Our observations reveal extensive variability and heterogeneity in genome organization at the level of individual alleles and demonstrate the coexistence of a broad spectrum of genome configurations in a cell population.

RevDate: 2019-07-15
CmpDate: 2019-07-15

Cardozo Gizzi AM, Cattoni DI, Fiche JB, et al (2019)

Microscopy-Based Chromosome Conformation Capture Enables Simultaneous Visualization of Genome Organization and Transcription in Intact Organisms.

Molecular cell, 74(1):212-222.e5.

Eukaryotic chromosomes are organized in multiple scales, from nucleosomes to chromosome territories. Recently, genome-wide methods identified an intermediate level of chromosome organization, topologically associating domains (TADs), that play key roles in transcriptional regulation. However, these methods cannot directly examine the interplay between transcriptional activation and chromosome architecture while maintaining spatial information. Here we present a multiplexed, sequential imaging approach (Hi-M) that permits simultaneous detection of chromosome organization and transcription in single nuclei. This allowed us to unveil the changes in 3D chromatin organization occurring upon transcriptional activation and homologous chromosome unpairing during awakening of the zygotic genome in intact Drosophila embryos. Excitingly, the ability of Hi-M to explore the multi-scale chromosome architecture with spatial resolution at different stages of development or during the cell cycle will be key to understanding the mechanisms and consequences of the 4D organization of the genome.

RevDate: 2019-08-18

Alavattam KG, Maezawa S, Sakashita A, et al (2019)

Attenuated chromatin compartmentalization in meiosis and its maturation in sperm development.

Nature structural & molecular biology, 26(3):175-184.

Germ cells manifest a unique gene expression program and regain totipotency in the zygote. Here, we perform Hi-C analysis to examine 3D chromatin organization in male germ cells during spermatogenesis. We show that the highly compartmentalized 3D chromatin organization characteristic of interphase nuclei is attenuated in meiotic prophase. Meiotic prophase is predominated by short-range intrachromosomal interactions that represent a condensed form akin to that of mitotic chromosomes. However, unlike mitotic chromosomes, meiotic chromosomes display weak genomic compartmentalization, weak topologically associating domains, and localized point interactions in prophase. In postmeiotic round spermatids, genomic compartmentalization increases and gives rise to the strong compartmentalization seen in mature sperm. The X chromosome lacks domain organization during meiotic sex-chromosome inactivation. We propose that male meiosis occurs amid global reprogramming of 3D chromatin organization and that strengthening of chromatin compartmentalization takes place in spermiogenesis to prepare the next generation of life.

RevDate: 2019-08-18

Patel L, Kang R, Rosenberg SC, et al (2019)

Dynamic reorganization of the genome shapes the recombination landscape in meiotic prophase.

Nature structural & molecular biology, 26(3):164-174.

In meiotic prophase, chromosomes are organized into compacted loop arrays to promote homolog pairing and recombination. Here, we probe the architecture of the mouse spermatocyte genome in early and late meiotic prophase using chromosome conformation capture (Hi-C). Our data support the established loop array model of meiotic chromosomes, and infer loops averaging 0.8-1.0 megabase pairs (Mb) in early prophase and extending to 1.5-2.0 Mb in late prophase as chromosomes compact and homologs undergo synapsis. Topologically associating domains (TADs) are lost in meiotic prophase, suggesting that assembly of the meiotic chromosome axis alters the activity of chromosome-associated cohesin complexes. While TADs are lost, physically separated A and B compartments are maintained in meiotic prophase. Moreover, meiotic DNA breaks and interhomolog crossovers preferentially form in the gene-dense A compartment, revealing a role for chromatin organization in meiotic recombination. Finally, direct detection of interhomolog contacts genome-wide reveals the structural basis for homolog alignment and juxtaposition by the synaptonemal complex.

RevDate: 2019-08-12
CmpDate: 2019-08-12

Zheng M, Tian SZ, Capurso D, et al (2019)

Multiplex chromatin interactions with single-molecule precision.

Nature, 566(7745):558-562.

The genomes of multicellular organisms are extensively folded into 3D chromosome territories within the nucleus1. Advanced 3D genome-mapping methods that combine proximity ligation and high-throughput sequencing (such as chromosome conformation capture, Hi-C)2, and chromatin immunoprecipitation techniques (such as chromatin interaction analysis by paired-end tag sequencing, ChIA-PET)3, have revealed topologically associating domains4 with frequent chromatin contacts, and have identified chromatin loops mediated by specific protein factors for insulation and regulation of transcription5-7. However, these methods rely on pairwise proximity ligation and reflect population-level views, and thus cannot reveal the detailed nature of chromatin interactions. Although single-cell Hi-C8 potentially overcomes this issue, this method may be limited by the sparsity of data that is inherent to current single-cell assays. Recent advances in microfluidics have opened opportunities for droplet-based genomic analysis9 but this approach has not yet been adapted for chromatin interaction analysis. Here we describe a strategy for multiplex chromatin-interaction analysis via droplet-based and barcode-linked sequencing, which we name ChIA-Drop. We demonstrate the robustness of ChIA-Drop in capturing complex chromatin interactions with single-molecule precision, which has not been possible using methods based on population-level pairwise contacts. By applying ChIA-Drop to Drosophila cells, we show that chromatin topological structures predominantly consist of multiplex chromatin interactions with high heterogeneity; ChIA-Drop also reveals promoter-centred multivalent interactions, which provide topological insights into transcription.

RevDate: 2019-05-30
CmpDate: 2019-05-30

Wang Y, Wang H, Zhang Y, et al (2019)

Reprogramming of Meiotic Chromatin Architecture during Spermatogenesis.

Molecular cell, 73(3):547-561.e6.

Chromatin organization undergoes drastic reconfiguration during gametogenesis. However, the molecular reprogramming of three-dimensional chromatin structure in this process remains poorly understood for mammals, including primates. Here, we examined three-dimensional chromatin architecture during spermatogenesis in rhesus monkey using low-input Hi-C. Interestingly, we found that topologically associating domains (TADs) undergo dissolution and reestablishment in spermatogenesis. Strikingly, pachytene spermatocytes, where synapsis occurs, are strongly depleted for TADs despite their active transcription state but uniquely show highly refined local compartments that alternate between transcribing and non-transcribing regions (refined-A/B). Importantly, such chromatin organization is conserved in mouse, where it remains largely intact upon transcription inhibition. Instead, it is attenuated in mutant spermatocytes, where the synaptonemal complex failed to be established. Intriguingly, this is accompanied by the restoration of TADs, suggesting that the synaptonemal complex may restrict TADs and promote local compartments. Thus, these data revealed extensive reprogramming of higher-order meiotic chromatin architecture during mammalian gametogenesis.

RevDate: 2019-02-28

Skibbens RV (2019)

Condensins and cohesins - one of these things is not like the other!.

Journal of cell science, 132(3): pii:132/3/jcs220491.

Condensins and cohesins are highly conserved complexes that tether together DNA loci within a single DNA molecule to produce DNA loops. Condensin and cohesin structures, however, are different, and the DNA loops produced by each underlie distinct cell processes. Condensin rods compact chromosomes during mitosis, with condensin I and II complexes producing spatially defined and nested looping in metazoan cells. Structurally adaptive cohesin rings produce loops, which organize the genome during interphase. Cohesin-mediated loops, termed topologically associating domains or TADs, antagonize the formation of epigenetically defined but untethered DNA volumes, termed compartments. While condensin complexes formed through cis-interactions must maintain chromatin compaction throughout mitosis, cohesins remain highly dynamic during interphase to allow for transcription-mediated responses to external cues and the execution of developmental programs. Here, I review differences in condensin and cohesin structures, and highlight recent advances regarding the intramolecular or cis-based tetherings through which condensins compact DNA during mitosis and cohesins organize the genome during interphase.

RevDate: 2019-06-13
CmpDate: 2019-06-13

Chathoth KT, NR Zabet (2019)

Chromatin architecture reorganization during neuronal cell differentiation in Drosophila genome.

Genome research, 29(4):613-625.

The organization of the genome into topologically associating domains (TADs) was shown to have a regulatory role in development and cellular function, but the mechanism involved in TAD establishment is still unclear. Here, we present the first high-resolution contact map of Drosophila neuronal cells (BG3) and identify different classes of TADs by comparing this to genome organization in embryonic cells (Kc167). We find that only some TADs are conserved in both cell lines, whereas the rest are cell-type-specific. This is supported by a change in the enrichment of architectural proteins at TAD borders, with BEAF-32 present in embryonic cells and CTCF in neuronal cells. Furthermore, we observe strong divergent transcription, together with RNA Polymerase II occupancy and an increase in DNA accessibility at the TAD borders. TAD borders that are specific to neuronal cells are enriched in enhancers controlled by neuronal-specific transcription factors. Our results suggest that TADs are dynamic across developmental stages and reflect the interplay between insulators, transcriptional states, and enhancer activities.

RevDate: 2019-04-10

Zheng Y, Ay F, S Keles (2019)

Generative modeling of multi-mapping reads with mHi-C advances analysis of Hi-C studies.

eLife, 8: pii:38070.

Current Hi-C analysis approaches are unable to account for reads that align to multiple locations, and hence underestimate biological signal from repetitive regions of genomes. We developed and validated mHi-C, a multi-read mapping strategy to probabilistically allocate Hi-C multi-reads. mHi-C exhibited superior performance over utilizing only uni-reads and heuristic approaches aimed at rescuing multi-reads on benchmarks. Specifically, mHi-C increased the sequencing depth by an average of 20% resulting in higher reproducibility of contact matrices and detected interactions across biological replicates. The impact of the multi-reads on the detection of significant interactions is influenced marginally by the relative contribution of multi-reads to the sequencing depth compared to uni-reads, cis-to-trans ratio of contacts, and the broad data quality as reflected by the proportion of mappable reads of datasets. Computational experiments highlighted that in Hi-C studies with short read lengths, mHi-C rescued multi-reads can emulate the effect of longer reads. mHi-C also revealed biologically supported bona fide promoter-enhancer interactions and topologically associating domains involving repetitive genomic regions, thereby unlocking a previously masked portion of the genome for conformation capture studies.

RevDate: 2019-04-11

Chapski DJ, Rosa-Garrido M, Hua N, et al (2018)

Spatial Principles of Chromatin Architecture Associated With Organ-Specific Gene Regulation.

Frontiers in cardiovascular medicine, 5:186.

Packaging of the genome in the nucleus is a non-random process that is thought to directly contribute to cell type-specific transcriptomes, although this hypothesis remains untested. Epigenome architecture, as assayed by chromatin conformation capture techniques, such as Hi-C, has recently been described in the mammalian cardiac myocyte and found to be remodeled in the setting of heart failure. In the present study, we sought to determine whether the structural features of the epigenome are conserved between different cell types by investigating Hi-C and RNA-seq data from heart and liver. Investigation of genes with enriched expression in heart or liver revealed nuanced interaction paradigms between organs: first, the log2 ratios of heart:liver (or liver:heart) intrachromosomal interactions are higher in organ-specific gene sets (p = 0.009), suggesting that organ-specific genes have specialized chromatin structural features. Despite similar number of total interactions between cell types, intrachromosomal interaction profiles in heart but not liver demonstrate that genes forming promoter-to-transcription-end-site loops in the cardiac nucleus tend to be involved in cardiac-related pathways. The same analysis revealed an analogous organ-specific interaction profile for liver-specific loop genes. Investigation of A/B compartmentalization (marker of chromatin accessibility) revealed that in the heart, 66.7% of cardiac-specific genes are in compartment A, while 66.1% of liver-specific genes are found in compartment B, suggesting that there exists a cardiac chromatin topology that allows for expression of cardiac genes. Analyses of interchromosomal interactions revealed a relationship between interchromosomal interaction count and organ-specific gene localization (p = 2.2 × 10-16) and that, for both organs, regions of active or inactive chromatin tend to segregate in 3D space (i.e., active with active, inactive with inactive). 3D models of topologically associating domains (TADs) suggest that TADs tend to interact with regions of similar compartmentalization across chromosomes, revealing trans structural interactions contributing to genomic compartmentalization at distinct structural scales. These models reveal discordant nuclear compaction strategies, with heart packaging compartment A genes preferentially toward the center of the nucleus and liver exhibiting preferential arrangement toward the periphery. Taken together, our data suggest that intra- and interchromosomal chromatin architecture plays a role in orchestrating tissue-specific gene expression.

RevDate: 2019-05-18
CmpDate: 2019-04-24

Donaldson-Collier MC, Sungalee S, Zufferey M, et al (2019)

EZH2 oncogenic mutations drive epigenetic, transcriptional, and structural changes within chromatin domains.

Nature genetics, 51(3):517-528.

Chromatin is organized into topologically associating domains (TADs) enriched in distinct histone marks. In cancer, gain-of-function mutations in the gene encoding the enhancer of zeste homolog 2 protein (EZH2) lead to a genome-wide increase in histone-3 Lys27 trimethylation (H3K27me3) associated with transcriptional repression. However, the effects of these epigenetic changes on the structure and function of chromatin domains have not been explored. Here, we found a functional interplay between TADs and epigenetic and transcriptional changes mediated by mutated EZH2. Altered EZH2 (p.Tyr646* (EZH2Y646X)) led to silencing of entire domains, synergistically inactivating multiple tumor suppressors. Intra-TAD gene silencing was coupled with changes of interactions between gene promoter regions. Notably, gene expression and chromatin interactions were restored by pharmacological inhibition of EZH2Y646X. Our results indicate that EZH2Y646X alters the topology and function of chromatin domains to promote synergistic oncogenic programs.

RevDate: 2019-08-13

Yamamoto T, N Saitoh (2019)

Non-coding RNAs and chromatin domains.

Current opinion in cell biology, 58:26-33.

Large-scale transcriptome analyses have identified a variety of non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) that are not translated into proteins. Many of them are in the nucleus, where they associate with chromatin and regulate its structure and function. Interphase chromosomes are intricately folded into multiple layers and composed of domains. Recent studies using Hi-C technologies have identified a mega-base self-associating chromatin domain: the topologically associating domain (TAD). The domain boundaries are demarcated with the chromatin regulatory proteins CTCF and cohesin, which are often bound to or recruited by ncRNAs. Some ncRNAs form RNA clouds in the nucleus and coordinate the transcription of multiple genes in a chromatin domain. In this review, we describe the emerging link between long ncRNAs and chromatin domains in the nucleus.

RevDate: 2019-08-05
CmpDate: 2019-08-05

Fritz AJ, Sehgal N, Pliss A, et al (2019)

Chromosome territories and the global regulation of the genome.

Genes, chromosomes & cancer, 58(7):407-426.

Spatial positioning is a fundamental principle governing nuclear processes. Chromatin is organized as a hierarchy from nucleosomes to Mbp chromatin domains (CD) or topologically associating domains (TADs) to higher level compartments culminating in chromosome territories (CT). Microscopic and sequencing techniques have substantiated chromatin organization as a critical factor regulating gene expression. For example, enhancers loop back to interact with their target genes almost exclusively within TADs, distally located coregulated genes reposition into common transcription factories upon activation, and Mbp CDs exhibit dynamic motion and configurational changes in vivo. A longstanding question in the nucleus field is whether an interactive nuclear matrix provides a direct link between structure and function. The findings of nonrandom radial positioning of CT within the nucleus suggest the possibility of preferential interaction patterns among populations of CT. Sequential labeling up to 10 CT followed by application of computer imaging and geometric graph mining algorithms revealed cell-type specific interchromosomal networks (ICN) of CT that are altered during the cell cycle, differentiation, and cancer progression. It is proposed that the ICN correlate with the global level of genome regulation. These approaches also demonstrated that the large scale 3-D topology of CT is specific for each CT. The cell-type specific proximity of certain chromosomal regions in normal cells may explain the propensity of distinct translocations in cancer subtypes. Understanding how genes are dysregulated upon disruption of the normal "wiring" of the nucleus by translocations, deletions, and amplifications that are hallmarks of cancer, should enable more targeted therapeutic strategies.

RevDate: 2019-01-25

Ohno M, Ando T, Priest DG, et al (2019)

Sub-nucleosomal Genome Structure Reveals Distinct Nucleosome Folding Motifs.

Cell, 176(3):520-534.e25.

Elucidating the global and local rules that govern genome-wide, hierarchical chromatin architecture remains a critical challenge. Current high-throughput chromosome conformation capture (Hi-C) technologies have identified large-scale chromatin structural motifs, such as topologically associating domains and looping. However, structural rules at the smallest or nucleosome scale remain poorly understood. Here, we coupled nucleosome-resolved Hi-C technology with simulated annealing-molecular dynamics (SA-MD) simulation to reveal 3D spatial distributions of nucleosomes and their genome-wide orientation in chromatin. Our method, called Hi-CO, revealed distinct nucleosome folding motifs across the yeast genome. Our results uncovered two types of basic secondary structural motifs in nucleosome folding: α-tetrahedron and β-rhombus analogous to α helix and β sheet motifs in protein folding. Using mutants and cell-cycle-synchronized cells, we further uncovered motifs with specific nucleosome positioning and orientation coupled to epigenetic features at individual loci. By illuminating molecular-level structure-function relationships in eukaryotic chromatin, our findings establish organizational principles of nucleosome folding.

RevDate: 2019-08-02
CmpDate: 2019-05-29

Oomen ME, Hansen AS, Liu Y, et al (2019)

CTCF sites display cell cycle-dependent dynamics in factor binding and nucleosome positioning.

Genome research, 29(2):236-249.

CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) plays a key role in the formation of topologically associating domains (TADs) and loops in interphase. During mitosis TADs are absent, but how TAD formation is dynamically controlled during the cell cycle is not known. Several contradicting observations have been made regarding CTCF binding to mitotic chromatin using both genomics- and microscopy-based techniques. Here, we have used four different assays to address this debate. First, using 5C, we confirmed that TADs and CTCF loops are readily detected in interphase, but absent during prometaphase. Second, ATAC-seq analysis showed that CTCF sites display greatly reduced accessibility and lose the CTCF footprint in prometaphase, suggesting loss of CTCF binding and rearrangement of the nucleosomal array around the binding motif. In contrast, transcription start sites remain accessible in prometaphase, although adjacent nucleosomes can also become repositioned and occupy at least a subset of start sites during mitosis. Third, loss of site-specific CTCF binding was directly demonstrated using CUT&RUN. Histone modifications and histone variants are maintained in mitosis, suggesting a role in bookmarking of active CTCF sites. Finally, live-cell imaging, fluorescence recovery after photobleaching, and single molecule tracking showed that almost all CTCF chromatin binding is lost in prometaphase. Combined, our results demonstrate loss of CTCF binding to CTCF sites during prometaphase and rearrangement of the chromatin landscape around CTCF motifs. This, combined with loss of cohesin, would contribute to the observed loss of TADs and CTCF loops during mitosis and reveals that CTCF sites, key architectural cis-elements, display cell cycle stage-dependent dynamics in factor binding and nucleosome positioning.

RevDate: 2019-02-26
CmpDate: 2019-02-26

Tan ZW, Guarnera E, IN Berezovsky (2018)

Exploring chromatin hierarchical organization via Markov State Modelling.

PLoS computational biology, 14(12):e1006686 pii:PCOMPBIOL-D-18-00774.

We propose a new computational method for exploring chromatin structural organization based on Markov State Modelling of Hi-C data represented as an interaction network between genomic loci. A Markov process describes the random walk of a traveling probe in the corresponding energy landscape, mimicking the motion of a biomolecule involved in chromatin function. By studying the metastability of the associated Markov State Model upon annealing, the hierarchical structure of individual chromosomes is observed, and corresponding set of structural partitions is identified at each level of hierarchy. Then, the notion of effective interaction between partitions is derived, delineating the overall topology and architecture of chromosomes. Mapping epigenetic data on the graphs of intra-chromosomal effective interactions helps in understanding how chromosome organization facilitates its function. A sketch of whole-genome interactions obtained from the analysis of 539 partitions from all 23 chromosomes, complemented by distributions of gene expression regulators and epigenetic factors, sheds light on the structure-function relationships in chromatin, delineating chromosomal territories, as well as structural partitions analogous to topologically associating domains and active / passive epigenomic compartments. In addition to the overall genome architecture shown by effective interactions, the affinity between partitions of different chromosomes was analyzed as an indicator of the degree of association between partitions in functionally relevant genomic interactions. The overall static picture of whole-genome interactions obtained with the method presented in this work provides a foundation for chromatin structural reconstruction, for the modelling of chromatin dynamics, and for exploring the regulation of genome function. The algorithms used in this study are implemented in a freely available Python package ChromaWalker (

RevDate: 2019-06-10

Sima J, Chakraborty A, Dileep V, et al (2019)

Identifying cis Elements for Spatiotemporal Control of Mammalian DNA Replication.

Cell, 176(4):816-830.e18.

The temporal order of DNA replication (replication timing [RT]) is highly coupled with genome architecture, but cis-elements regulating either remain elusive. We created a series of CRISPR-mediated deletions and inversions of a pluripotency-associated topologically associating domain (TAD) in mouse ESCs. CTCF-associated domain boundaries were dispensable for RT. CTCF protein depletion weakened most TAD boundaries but had no effect on RT or A/B compartmentalization genome-wide. By contrast, deletion of three intra-TAD CTCF-independent 3D contact sites caused a domain-wide early-to-late RT shift, an A-to-B compartment switch, weakening of TAD architecture, and loss of transcription. The dispensability of TAD boundaries and the necessity of these "early replication control elements" (ERCEs) was validated by deletions and inversions at additional domains. Our results demonstrate that discrete cis-regulatory elements orchestrate domain-wide RT, A/B compartmentalization, TAD architecture, and transcription, revealing fundamental principles linking genome structure and function.

RevDate: 2019-04-15
CmpDate: 2019-04-15

Negi S, Bolt CC, Zhang H, et al (2019)

An extended regulatory landscape drives Tbx18 activity in a variety of prostate-associated cell lineages.

Developmental biology, 446(2):180-192.

The evolutionarily conserved transcription factor, Tbx18, is expressed in a dynamic pattern throughout embryonic and early postnatal life and plays crucial roles in the development of multiple organ systems. Previous studies have indicated that this dynamic function is controlled by an expansive regulatory structure, extending far upstream and downstream of the gene. With the goal of identifying elements that interact with the Tbx18 promoter in developing prostate, we coupled chromatin conformation capture (4C) and ATAC-seq from embryonic day 18.5 (E18.5) mouse urogenital sinus (UGS), where Tbx18 is highly expressed. The data revealed dozens of active chromatin elements distributed throughout a 1.5 million base pair topologically associating domain (TAD). To identify cell types contributing to this chromatin signal, we used lineage tracing methods with a Tbx18 Cre "knock-in" allele; these data show clearly that Tbx18-expressing precursors differentiate into wide array of cell types in multiple tissue compartments, most of which have not been previously reported. We also used a 209 kb Cre-expressing Tbx18 transgene, to partition enhancers for specific precursor types into two rough spatial domains. Within this central 209 kb compartment, we identified ECR1, previously described to regulate Tbx18 expression in ureter, as an active regulator of UGS expression. Together these data define the diverse fates of Tbx18+ precursors in prostate-associated tissues for the first time, and identify a highly active TAD controlling the gene's essential function in this tissue.

RevDate: 2019-02-15
CmpDate: 2019-02-04

Liu T, Z Wang (2018)

Reconstructing high-resolution chromosome three-dimensional structures by Hi-C complex networks.

BMC bioinformatics, 19(Suppl 17):496 pii:10.1186/s12859-018-2464-z.

BACKGROUND: Hi-C data have been widely used to reconstruct chromosomal three-dimensional (3D) structures. One of the key limitations of Hi-C is the unclear relationship between spatial distance and the number of Hi-C contacts. Many methods used a fixed parameter when converting the number of Hi-C contacts to wish distances. However, a single parameter cannot properly explain the relationship between wish distances and genomic distances or the locations of topologically associating domains (TADs).

RESULTS: We have addressed one of the key issues of using Hi-C data, that is, the unclear relationship between spatial distances and the number of Hi-C contacts, which is crucial to understand significant biological functions, such as the enhancer-promoter interactions. Specifically, we developed a new method to infer this converting parameter and pairwise Euclidean distances based on the topology of the Hi-C complex network (HiCNet). The inferred distances were modeled by clustering coefficient and multiple other types of constraints. We found that our inferred distances between bead-pairs within the same TAD were apparently smaller than those distances between bead-pairs from different TADs. Our inferred distances had a higher correlation with fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) data, fitted the localization patterns of Xist transcripts on DNA, and better matched 156 pairs of protein-enabled long-range chromatin interactions detected by ChIA-PET. Using the inferred distances and another round of optimization, we further reconstructed 40 kb high-resolution 3D chromosomal structures of mouse male ES cells. The high-resolution structures successfully illustrate TADs and DNA loops (peaks in Hi-C contact heatmaps) that usually indicate enhancer-promoter interactions.

CONCLUSIONS: We developed a novel method to infer the wish distances between DNA bead-pairs from Hi-C contacts. High-resolution 3D structures of chromosomes were built based on the newly-inferred wish distances. This whole process has been implemented as a tool named HiCNet, which is publicly available at .

RevDate: 2019-08-14

Rhie SK, Schreiner S, Witt H, et al (2018)

Using 3D epigenomic maps of primary olfactory neuronal cells from living individuals to understand gene regulation.

Science advances, 4(12):eaav8550 pii:aav8550.

As part of PsychENCODE, we developed a three-dimensional (3D) epigenomic map of primary cultured neuronal cells derived from olfactory neuroepithelium (CNON). We mapped topologically associating domains and high-resolution chromatin interactions using Hi-C and identified regulatory elements using chromatin immunoprecipitation and nucleosome positioning assays. Using epigenomic datasets from biopsies of 63 living individuals, we found that epigenetic marks at distal regulatory elements are more variable than marks at proximal regulatory elements. By integrating genotype and metadata, we identified enhancers that have different levels corresponding to differences in genetic variation, gender, smoking, and schizophrenia. Motif searches revealed that many CNON enhancers are bound by neuronal-related transcription factors. Last, we combined 3D epigenomic maps and gene expression profiles to predict enhancer-target gene interactions on a genome-wide scale. This study not only provides a framework for understanding individual epigenetic variation using a primary cell model system but also contributes valuable data resources for epigenomic studies of neuronal epithelium.

RevDate: 2019-07-01
CmpDate: 2019-04-25

Le Dily F, Vidal E, Cuartero Y, et al (2019)

Hormone-control regions mediate steroid receptor-dependent genome organization.

Genome research, 29(1):29-39.

In breast cancer cells, some topologically associating domains (TADs) behave as hormonal gene regulation units, within which gene transcription is coordinately regulated in response to steroid hormones. Here we further describe that responsive TADs contain 20- to 100-kb-long clusters of intermingled estrogen receptor (ESR1) and progesterone receptor (PGR) binding sites, hereafter called hormone-control regions (HCRs). In T47D cells, we identified more than 200 HCRs, which are frequently bound by unliganded ESR1 and PGR. These HCRs establish steady long-distance inter-TAD interactions between them and organize characteristic looping structures with promoters in their TADs even in the absence of hormones in ESR1+-PGR+ cells. This organization is dependent on the expression of the receptors and is further dynamically modulated in response to steroid hormones. HCRs function as platforms that integrate different signals, resulting in some cases in opposite transcriptional responses to estrogens or progestins. Altogether, these results suggest that steroid hormone receptors act not only as hormone-regulated sequence-specific transcription factors but also as local and global genome organizers.

RevDate: 2019-07-23
CmpDate: 2019-01-14

Wang D, Liu S, Warrell J, et al (2018)

Comprehensive functional genomic resource and integrative model for the human brain.

Science (New York, N.Y.), 362(6420):.

Despite progress in defining genetic risk for psychiatric disorders, their molecular mechanisms remain elusive. Addressing this, the PsychENCODE Consortium has generated a comprehensive online resource for the adult brain across 1866 individuals. The PsychENCODE resource contains ~79,000 brain-active enhancers, sets of Hi-C linkages, and topologically associating domains; single-cell expression profiles for many cell types; expression quantitative-trait loci (QTLs); and further QTLs associated with chromatin, splicing, and cell-type proportions. Integration shows that varying cell-type proportions largely account for the cross-population variation in expression (with >88% reconstruction accuracy). It also allows building of a gene regulatory network, linking genome-wide association study variants to genes (e.g., 321 for schizophrenia). We embed this network into an interpretable deep-learning model, which improves disease prediction by ~6-fold versus polygenic risk scores and identifies key genes and pathways in psychiatric disorders.

RevDate: 2019-04-25
CmpDate: 2019-04-25

Amat R, Böttcher R, Le Dily F, et al (2019)

Rapid reversible changes in compartments and local chromatin organization revealed by hyperosmotic shock.

Genome research, 29(1):18-28.

Nuclear architecture is decisive for the assembly of transcriptional responses. However, how chromosome organization is dynamically modulated to permit rapid and transient transcriptional changes in response to environmental challenges remains unclear. Here we show that hyperosmotic stress disrupts different levels of chromosome organization, ranging from A/B compartment changes to reduction in the number and insulation of topologically associating domains (TADs). Concomitantly, transcription is greatly affected, TAD borders weaken, and RNA Polymerase II runs off from hundreds of transcription end sites. Stress alters the binding profiles of architectural proteins, which explains the disappearance of local chromatin organization. These processes are dynamic, and cells rapidly reconstitute their default chromatin conformation after stress removal, uncovering an intrinsic organization. Transcription is not required for local chromatin reorganization, while compartment recovery is partially transcription-dependent. Thus, nuclear organization in mammalian cells can be rapidly modulated by environmental changes in a reversible manner.

RevDate: 2019-05-30
CmpDate: 2019-05-30

Chen X, Hao Y, Cui Y, et al (2019)

LncVar: Deciphering Genetic Variations Associated with Long Noncoding Genes.

Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.), 1870:189-198.

Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) are pervasively transcribed in various species and play important roles in many biological processes. The biological functions of most lncRNAs remain to be explored. Previous studies have revealed that a large amount of disease-associated variations are located in the lncRNA gene regions. To evaluate the effects of genetic variations on lncRNAs, we constructed a database of genetic variations associated with long noncoding genes, LncVar. In this chapter, we describe the process of collecting data (including lncRNAs, transcription factor binding sites and m6A modification sites of lncRNAs, putatively translated open reading frames in lncRNAs) and steps of evaluating the effects of variations on the transcriptional regulation and modification of lncRNAs.

RevDate: 2019-07-14

Nash AJ, B Lenhard (2018)

A Novel Measure of Non-coding Genome Conservation Identifies Genomic Regulatory Blocks Within Primates.

Bioinformatics (Oxford, England) pii:5233000 [Epub ahead of print].

Motivation: Clusters of extremely conserved non-coding elements (CNEs) mark genomic regions devoted to cis-regulation of key developmental genes in Metazoa. We have recently shown that their span coincides with that of topologically associating domains (TADs), making them useful for estimating conserved TAD boundaries in the absence of Hi-C data. The standard approach - detecting CNEs in genome alignments and then establishing the boundaries of their clusters - requires tuning of several parameters and breaks down when comparing closely related genomes.

Results: We present a novel, kurtosis-based measure of pairwise non-coding conservation that requires no pre-set thresholds for conservation level and length of CNEs. We show that it performs robustly across a large span of evolutionary distances, including across the closely related genomes of primates for which standard approaches fail. The method is straightforward to implement and enables detection and comparison of clusters of CNEs and estimation of underlying TADs across a vastly increased range of Metazoan genomes.

Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

RevDate: 2019-04-24
CmpDate: 2019-04-24

Fanucchi S, Fok ET, Dalla E, et al (2019)

Immune genes are primed for robust transcription by proximal long noncoding RNAs located in nuclear compartments.

Nature genetics, 51(1):138-150.

Accumulation of trimethylation of histone H3 at lysine 4 (H3K4me3) on immune-related gene promoters underlies robust transcription during trained immunity. However, the molecular basis for this remains unknown. Here we show three-dimensional chromatin topology enables immune genes to engage in chromosomal contacts with a subset of long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) we have defined as immune gene-priming lncRNAs (IPLs). We show that the prototypical IPL, UMLILO, acts in cis to direct the WD repeat-containing protein 5 (WDR5)-mixed lineage leukemia protein 1 (MLL1) complex across the chemokine promoters, facilitating their H3K4me3 epigenetic priming. This mechanism is shared amongst several trained immune genes. Training mediated by β-glucan epigenetically reprograms immune genes by upregulating IPLs in manner dependent on nuclear factor of activated T cells. The murine chemokine topologically associating domain lacks an IPL, and the Cxcl genes are not trained. Strikingly, the insertion of UMLILO into the chemokine topologically associating domain in mouse macrophages resulted in training of Cxcl genes. This provides strong evidence that lncRNA-mediated regulation is central to the establishment of trained immunity.

RevDate: 2019-05-28
CmpDate: 2019-05-28

Sun F, Chronis C, Kronenberg M, et al (2019)

Promoter-Enhancer Communication Occurs Primarily within Insulated Neighborhoods.

Molecular cell, 73(2):250-263.e5.

Metazoan chromosomes are sequentially partitioned into topologically associating domains (TADs) and then into smaller sub-domains. One class of sub-domains, insulated neighborhoods, are proposed to spatially sequester and insulate the enclosed genes through self-association and chromatin looping. However, it has not been determined functionally whether promoter-enhancer interactions and gene regulation are broadly restricted to within these loops. Here, we employed published datasets from murine embryonic stem cells (mESCs) to identify insulated neighborhoods that confine promoter-enhancer interactions and demarcate gene regulatory regions. To directly address the functionality of these regions, we depleted estrogen-related receptor β (Esrrb), which binds the Mediator co-activator complex, to impair enhancers of genes within 222 insulated neighborhoods without causing mESC differentiation. Esrrb depletion reduces Mediator binding, promoter-enhancer looping, and expression of both nascent RNA and mRNA within the insulated neighborhoods without significantly affecting the flanking genes. Our data indicate that insulated neighborhoods represent functional regulons in mammalian genomes.

RevDate: 2019-03-07
CmpDate: 2019-03-07

Zufferey M, Tavernari D, Oricchio E, et al (2018)

Comparison of computational methods for the identification of topologically associating domains.

Genome biology, 19(1):217 pii:10.1186/s13059-018-1596-9.

BACKGROUND: Chromatin folding gives rise to structural elements among which are clusters of densely interacting DNA regions termed topologically associating domains (TADs). TADs have been characterized across multiple species, tissue types, and differentiation stages, sometimes in association with regulation of biological functions. The reliability and reproducibility of these findings are intrinsically related with the correct identification of these domains from high-throughput chromatin conformation capture (Hi-C) experiments.

RESULTS: Here, we test and compare 22 computational methods to identify TADs across 20 different conditions. We find that TAD sizes and numbers vary significantly among callers and data resolutions, challenging the definition of an average TAD size, but strengthening the hypothesis that TADs are hierarchically organized domains, rather than disjoint structural elements. Performances of these methods differ based on data resolution and normalization strategy, but a core set of TAD callers consistently retrieve reproducible domains, even at low sequencing depths, that are enriched for TAD-associated biological features.

CONCLUSIONS: This study provides a reference for the analysis of chromatin domains from Hi-C experiments and useful guidelines for choosing a suitable approach based on the experimental design, available data, and biological question of interest.

RevDate: 2019-08-21

Pękowska A, Klaus B, Xiang W, et al (2018)

Gain of CTCF-Anchored Chromatin Loops Marks the Exit from Naive Pluripotency.

Cell systems, 7(5):482-495.e10.

The genome of pluripotent stem cells adopts a unique three-dimensional architecture featuring weakly condensed heterochromatin and large nucleosome-free regions. Yet, it is unknown whether structural loops and contact domains display characteristics that distinguish embryonic stem cells (ESCs) from differentiated cell types. We used genome-wide chromosome conformation capture and super-resolution imaging to determine nuclear organization in mouse ESC and neural stem cell (NSC) derivatives. We found that loss of pluripotency is accompanied by widespread gain of structural loops. This general architectural change correlates with enhanced binding of CTCF and cohesins and more pronounced insulation of contacts across chromatin boundaries in lineage-committed cells. Reprogramming NSCs to pluripotency restores the unique features of ESC domain topology. Domains defined by the anchors of loops established upon differentiation are enriched for developmental genes. Chromatin loop formation is a pervasive structural alteration to the genome that accompanies exit from pluripotency and delineates the spatial segregation of developmentally regulated genes.

RevDate: 2019-02-15
CmpDate: 2019-02-12

Haloupek N (2018)

Job Dekker: 2018 Edward Novitski Prize.

Genetics, 210(3):745-746.

The Genetics Society of America's (GSA) Edward Novitski Prize is awarded to researchers who have solved challenging problems in genetics through experiments that demonstrate exceptional creativity and ingenuity. Job Dekker of the University of Massachusetts Medical School has been selected for the 2018 award in recognition of his innovative approach to understanding chromosome interactions and nuclear organization. Among Dekker's contributions are the development of the now-ubiquitous approach of chromosome conformation capture and the discovery of topologically associating domains.

RevDate: 2019-08-20
CmpDate: 2019-08-20

Racko D, Benedetti F, Dorier J, et al (2019)

Are TADs supercoiled?.

Nucleic acids research, 47(2):521-532.

Topologically associating domains (TADs) are megabase-sized building blocks of interphase chromosomes in higher eukaryotes. TADs are chromosomal regions with increased frequency of internal interactions. On average a pair of loci separated by a given genomic distance contact each other 2-3 times more frequently when they are in the same TAD as compared to a pair of loci located in two neighbouring TADs. TADs are also functional blocks of chromosomes as enhancers and their cognate promoters are normally located in the same TAD, even if their genomic distance from each other can be as large as a megabase. The internal structure of TADs, causing their increased frequency of internal interactions, is not established yet. We survey here experimental studies investigating presence of supercoiling in interphase chromosomes. We also review numerical simulation studies testing whether transcription-induced supercoiling of chromatin fibres can explain how TADs are formed and how they can assure very efficient interactions between enhancers and their cognate promoters located in the same TAD.

RevDate: 2019-07-16
CmpDate: 2019-07-16

Rowley MJ, VG Corces (2018)

Organizational principles of 3D genome architecture.

Nature reviews. Genetics, 19(12):789-800.

Studies of 3D chromatin organization have suggested that chromosomes are hierarchically organized into large compartments composed of smaller domains called topologically associating domains (TADs). Recent evidence suggests that compartments are smaller than previously thought and that the transcriptional or chromatin state is responsible for interactions leading to the formation of small compartmental domains in all organisms. In vertebrates, CTCF forms loop domains, probably via an extrusion process involving cohesin. CTCF loops cooperate with compartmental domains to establish the 3D organization of the genome. The continuous extrusion of the chromatin fibre by cohesin may also be responsible for the establishment of enhancer-promoter interactions and stochastic aspects of the transcription process. These observations suggest that the 3D organization of the genome is an emergent property of chromatin and its components, and thus may not be only a determinant but also a consequence of its function.


ESP Quick Facts

ESP Origins

In the early 1990's, Robert Robbins was a faculty member at Johns Hopkins, where he directed the informatics core of GDB — the human gene-mapping database of the international human genome project. To share papers with colleagues around the world, he set up a small paper-sharing section on his personal web page. This small project evolved into The Electronic Scholarly Publishing Project.

ESP Support

In 1995, Robbins became the VP/IT of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, WA. Soon after arriving in Seattle, Robbins secured funding, through the ELSI component of the US Human Genome Project, to create the original ESP.ORG web site, with the formal goal of providing free, world-wide access to the literature of classical genetics.

ESP Rationale

Although the methods of molecular biology can seem almost magical to the uninitiated, the original techniques of classical genetics are readily appreciated by one and all: cross individuals that differ in some inherited trait, collect all of the progeny, score their attributes, and propose mechanisms to explain the patterns of inheritance observed.

ESP Goal

In reading the early works of classical genetics, one is drawn, almost inexorably, into ever more complex models, until molecular explanations begin to seem both necessary and natural. At that point, the tools for understanding genome research are at hand. Assisting readers reach this point was the original goal of The Electronic Scholarly Publishing Project.

ESP Usage

Usage of the site grew rapidly and has remained high. Faculty began to use the site for their assigned readings. Other on-line publishers, ranging from The New York Times to Nature referenced ESP materials in their own publications. Nobel laureates (e.g., Joshua Lederberg) regularly used the site and even wrote to suggest changes and improvements.

ESP Content

When the site began, no journals were making their early content available in digital format. As a result, ESP was obliged to digitize classic literature before it could be made available. For many important papers — such as Mendel's original paper or the first genetic map — ESP had to produce entirely new typeset versions of the works, if they were to be available in a high-quality format.

ESP Help

Early support from the DOE component of the Human Genome Project was critically important for getting the ESP project on a firm foundation. Since that funding ended (nearly 20 years ago), the project has been operated as a purely volunteer effort. Anyone wishing to assist in these efforts should send an email to Robbins.

ESP Plans

With the development of methods for adding typeset side notes to PDF files, the ESP project now plans to add annotated versions of some classical papers to its holdings. We also plan to add new reference and pedagogical material. We have already started providing regularly updated, comprehensive bibliographies to the ESP.ORG site.

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Papers in Classical Genetics

The ESP began as an effort to share a handful of key papers from the early days of classical genetics. Now the collection has grown to include hundreds of papers, in full-text format.

Digital Books

Along with papers on classical genetics, ESP offers a collection of full-text digital books, including many works by Darwin (and even a collection of poetry — Chicago Poems by Carl Sandburg).


ESP now offers a much improved and expanded collection of timelines, designed to give the user choice over subject matter and dates.


Biographical information about many key scientists.

Selected Bibliographies

Bibliographies on several topics of potential interest to the ESP community are now being automatically maintained and generated on the ESP site.

ESP Picks from Around the Web (updated 07 JUL 2018 )