Chromosoma

, 118:11

Chromatin: linking structure and function in the nucleolus

Authors

    • Department of Cell and Developmental BiologyJohn Innes Centre, Norwich Research Park
  • Peter J. Shaw
    • Department of Cell and Developmental BiologyJohn Innes Centre, Norwich Research Park
Review

DOI: 10.1007/s00412-008-0184-2

Cite this article as:
McKeown, P.C. & Shaw, P.J. Chromosoma (2009) 118: 11. doi:10.1007/s00412-008-0184-2

Abstract

The nucleolus is an informative model structure for studying how chromatin-regulated transcription relates to nuclear organisation. In this review, we describe how chromatin controls nucleolar structure through both the modulation of rDNA activity by convergently-evolved remodelling complexes and by direct effects upon rDNA packaging. This packaging not only regulates transcription but may also be important for suppressing internal recombination between tandem rDNA repeats. The identification of nucleolar histone chaperones and novel chromatin proteins by mass spectrometry suggests that structure-specific chromatin components remain to be characterised and may regulate the nucleolus in novel ways. However, it also suggests that there is considerable overlap between nucleolar and non-nucleolar-chromatin components. We conclude that a fuller understanding of nucleolar chromatin will be essential for understanding how gene organisation is linked with nuclear architecture.

Abbreviations

DNMT

DNA methyltransferase

HAT

histone acetyltransferase

HDAC

histone deacetylase

HMT

histone methyltransferase

MS

mass spectrometry

NOR

nucleolar organiser region

rDNA

ribosomal DNA

rRNA

ribosomal RNA

UBF

upstream binding factor.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008