, Volume 64, Issue 4, pp 449-457,
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Epigenetic control of nuclear architecture


The cell nucleus is a highly structured compartment where nuclear components are thought to localize in non-random positions. Correct positioning of large chromatin domains may have a direct impact on the localization of other nuclear components, and can therefore influence the global functionality of the nuclear compartment. DNA methylation of cytosine residues in CpG dinucleotides is a prominent epigenetic modification of the chromatin fiber. DNA methylation, in conjunction with the biochemical modification pattern of histone tails, is known to lock chromatin in a close and transcriptionally inactive conformation. The relationship between DNA methylation and large-scale organization of nuclear architecture, however, is poorly understood. Here we briefly summarize present concepts of nuclear architecture and current data supporting a link between DNA methylation and the maintenance of large-scale nuclear organization.

Received 3 August 2006; received after revision 26 September 2006; accepted 22 November 2006