Nucleic Acids Res 1992 Oct 25;20(20):5413-22
Department of Biology, University of Rochester, NY 14627.
We performed a high resolution analysis of the chromatin structure within the regions required for distal transcription of the Drosophila melanogaster alcohol dehydrogenase gene (Adh). Using dimethyl sulfate, DNase I, and micrococcal nuclease as structural probes, and comparing chromatin structure in tissues isolated from several developmental stages, we have identified several sites of stage- and tissue-specific DNA-protein interactions that correlate with distal transcription initiation. Most were within previously identified cis-acting elements and/or in vitro protein binding sites of the adult enhancer (AAE) and distal promoter, including the TATA box. We also detected a novel stage-specific DNA-protein interaction at the Adf-2a binding site where a non-histone protein was bound to the DNA on the surface of a positioned nucleosome previously identified between the distal promoter and adult enhancer. In addition to footprints, we have also revealed stage- and tissue-specific DNA helix deformations between many of the non-histone protein binding sites. These helix distortions suggest there are interactions among the adjacently bound proteins that result in bending or kinking of the intervening DNA. The distal promoter and AAE have an accessible chromatin conformation in fat body prior to the third larval instar and many of the regulatory proteins that bind in these regions are also available before distal transcription begins. Nevertheless, the timing of DNA-protein interactions in the distal promoter and AAE suggest these proteins do not bind individually or assemble progressively as they and their binding sites become available. Instead, there appears to be a coordinated assembly of a large cooperative complex of proteins interacting with the distal promoter, the positioned nucleosome, the enhancer of the distal promoter (the AAE), and each other.
PMID: 1437559, UI: 93065210