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Cell May 1, 1984; 37 (1): 33-41.

Chromatin assembly in Xenopus oocytes: in vitro studies.

Glikin GC , Ruberti I , Worcel A .

We describe and characterize a complex reaction that catalyzes DNA supercoiling and chromatin assembly in vitro. A Xenopus oocyte extract supplemented with ATP and Mg++ converts DNA circles into minichromosomes that display a native, 200 bp periodicity. When supercoiled DNA is added to this extract it undergoes a time-dependent series of topological changes, which precisely mimic those found when the DNA is microinjected into oocytes. As judged by the conformation of the subsequently deproteinized DNA, the supercoiled DNA is first relaxed, in a reaction that takes 4 min, and then it is resupercoiled in a slower process that takes 4 hr. The relaxation is partially inhibited by EDTA, to an extent that suggests that that it is catalyzed by a type I DNA topoisomerase. The resupercoiling , on the other hand, requires ATP and Mg++, is completely inhibited by EDTA, and is inhibited by novobiocin in a manner that suggests it is catalyzed by a type II DNA topoisomerase. These findings, and the ones reported in the preceding paper ( Ryoji and Worcel , 1984), lead us to propose that chromatin assembly is an active, ATP-driven process.

PubMed ID: 6327057
Article link: Cell