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J Mol Biol June 30, 2017; 429 (13): 2075-2092.

Regulation of Nucleosome Stacking and Chromatin Compaction by the Histone H4 N-Terminal Tail-H2A Acidic Patch Interaction.

Chen Q , Yang R , Korolev N , Liu CF , Nordenskiƶld L .

Chromatin folding and dynamics are critically dependent on nucleosome-nucleosome interactions with important contributions from internucleosome binding of the histone H4 N-terminal tail K16-R23 domain to the surface of the H2A/H2B dimer. The H4 Lys16 plays a pivotal role in this regard. Using in vitro reconstituted 12-mer nucleosome arrays, we have investigated the mechanism of the H4 N-terminal tail in maintaining nucleosome-nucleosome stacking and mediating intra- and inter-array chromatin compaction, with emphasis on the role of K16 and the positive charge region, R17-R23. Analytical ultracentrifugation sedimentation velocity experiments and precipitation assays were employed to analyze effects on chromatin folding and self-association, respectively. Effects on chromatin folding caused by various mutations and modifications at position K16 in the H4 histone were studied. Additionally, using charge-quenching mutations, we characterized the importance of the interaction of the residues within the H4 positive charge region R17-R23 with the H2A acidic patch of the adjacent nucleosome. Furthermore, crosslinking experiments were conducted to establish the proximity of the basic tail region to the acidic patch. Our data indicate that the positive charge and length of the side chain of H4 K16 are important for its access to the adjacent nucleosome in the process of nucleosome-nucleosome stacking and array folding. The location and orientation of the H4 R17-R23 domain on the H2A/H2B dimer surface of the neighboring nucleosome core particle (NCP) in the compacted chromatin fiber were established. The dominance of electrostatic interactions in maintaining intra-array interaction was demonstrated.

PubMed ID: 28322915
Article link: J Mol Biol

Genes referenced: hist2h2ab

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