Plant Molecular Biology

, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 507–515 | Cite as

Chromosomal proteins of Arabidopsis thaliana

  • Charles P. Moehs
  • Elizabeth F. McElwain
  • Steven Spiker
Article

Abstract

In plants with large genomes, each of the classes of the histones (H1, H2A, H2B, H3 and H4) are not unique polypeptides, but rather families of closely related proteins that are called histone variants. The small genome and preponderance of single-copy DNA in Arabidopsis thaliana has led us to ask if this plant has such families of histone variants. We have thus isolated histones from Arabidopsis and analyzed them on four polyacrylamide gel electrophoretic systems: an SDS system; an acetic acid-urea system; a Triton transverse gradient system; and a two-dimensional system combining SDS and Triton-acetic acid-urea systems. This approach has allowed us to identify all four of the nucleosomal core histones in Arabidopsis and to establish the existence of a set of H2A and H2B variants. Arabidopsis has at least four H2A variants and three H2B variants of distinct molecular weights as assessed by electrophoretic mobility on SDS-polyacrylamide gels. Thus, Arabidopsis displays a diversity in these histones similar to the diversity displayed by plants with larger genomes such as wheat.

The high mobility group (HMG) non-histone chromatin proteins have attracted considerable attention because of the evidence implicating them as structural proteins of transcriptionally active chromatin. We have isolated a group of non-histone chromatin proteins from Arabidopsis that meet the operational criteria to be classed as HMG proteins and that cross-react with antisera to HMG proteins of wheat.

Key words

Arabidopsis thaliana histone variants high mobility group proteins 

Abbreviations

HMG

high mobility group

SDS

sodium dodecyl sulfate

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    Allis CD, Richman R, Gorovsky MA, Ziegler YS, Touchstone B, Bradley WA, Cook RG: hvl is an evolutionarily conserved H2A variant that is preferentially associated with active genes. J Biol Chem 261: 1941–1948 (1986).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Allis CD, Glover CVC, Bowen JK, Gorovsky MA: Histone variants specific to the transcriptionally active, amitotically dividing macronucleus of the unicellular eucaryote, Tetrahymena thermophila. Cell 20: 609–617 (1980).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Chaboute MA, Chaubet N, Philipps G, Ehling M, Gigot C: Genomic organization and nucleotide sequences of two histone H3 and two histone H4 genes of Arabidopsis thaliana. Plant Mol Biol 8: 179–191 (1987).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Goodwin GH, Sanders C, Johns EW: A new group of chromatin-associated proteins with a high content of acidic and basic amino acids. Eur J Biochem 38: 14–19 (1973).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Isenberg I: Histones. Ann Rev Biochem 48: 159–191 (1979).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Johns EW: History, definitions and problems. In: Johns EW (ed) The HMG Chromosomal Proteins, pp. 1–7. Academic Press, London (1982).Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Karpenchuk KG, Klimyuk VI: Identification of plant histones by nonionic detergent binding: The evolutionary argument. Mol Biol (Moscow) (English Trans.) 21: 813–822 (1987).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Kolodrubetz D, Rykowski MC, Grunstein M: Histone H2A subtypes associate interchangeably in vivo with histone H2B subtypes. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 79: 7814–7818 (1982).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Langenbuch J, Philipps G, Gigot C: Fractionation and characterization of histones from barley (Hordeum vulgare) leaves. Plant Mol Biol 2: 207–220 (1983).Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Leutwiler LS, Hough-Evans BR, Meyerowitz EM: The DNA of Arabidopsis thaliana. Mol Gen Genet 194: 15–23 (1984).Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Lohr D, Hereford L: Yeast chromatin is uniformly digested by DNase I. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 76: 4285–4288 (1979).Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Matsudaira PT, Burgess DR: SDS microslab linear gradient polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Anal Biochem 87: 386–396 (1978).Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Mayes ELV: Species and tissue specificity. In: Johns EW (ed) The HMG Chromosomal Proteins, pp. 9–40. Academic Press, London (1982).Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Pruitt RE, Meyerowitz EM: Characterization of the genome of Arabidopsis thaliana. J Mol Biol 187: 169–183 (1986).Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Rodrigues J, Brandt WF, Von Holt C: Plant histone 2 from wheat germ, a family of histone H2A variants: partial amino acid sequences. Biochim Biophys Acta 579: 196–206 (1979).Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Rodrigues J, Brandt WF, Von Holt C: The amino acid sequence of wheat histone H2A(1): a core histone with a C-terminal extension. Eur J Biochem 150: 499–506 (1985).Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Rykowski MC, Wallis JW, Choe J, Grunstein M: Histone H2B subtypes are dispensable during the yeast cell cycle. Cell 25: 477–487 (1981).Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Simon JH, Becker WM: A polyethylene glycol/dextran procedure for the isolation of chromatin proteins (histones and non-histones) from wheat germ. Biochim Biophys Acta 454: 154–171 (1976).Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Simpson RT: Modulation of nucleosome structure by histone subtypes in sea urchin embryos. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 78: 6803–6807 (1981).Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Spiker S: A modification of the acetic-acid urea system for use in microslab polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Anal Biochem 108: 263–265 (1980).Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Spiker S: Histone variants in plants. J Biol Chem 257: 14250–14255 (1982).Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Spiker S: High-Mobility Group chromosomal proteins of wheat. J Biol Chem 259: 12007–12013 (1984).Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Spiker S: Histones and HMG proteins of higher plants. In: Kahl G (ed) Architecture of Eukaryotic Genes, pp. 143–162. VCH Verlagsgesellschaft, Weinheim (1988).Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Spiker S, Key JL, Wakim B: Identification and fractionation of plant histones. Arch Biochem Biophys 176: 510–518 (1976).Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Spiker S, Mardian JKW, Isenberg I: Chromosomal HMG proteins occur in three eukaryotic kingdoms. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 82: 129–135 (1978).Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Spiker S, Everett KM: Blotting index of dissimilarity: use to study immunological relatedness of plant and animal high mobility group (HMG) chromosomal proteins. Plant Mol Biol 9: 431–442 (1987).Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Spiker S, Hopkins R, Fischer R, Quatrano R: Synthesis of nucleosomal histone variants during wheat grain development. Biochim Biophys Acta 910: 157–162 (1987).Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Vincentz M, Gigot C: HMG-like protein in barley and corn nuclei. Plant Mol Biol 4: 161–168 (1985).Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Waterborg JH, Winicov I, Harrington RH: Histone variants and acetylated species from the alfalfa plant Medicago sativa. Arch Biochem Biophys 256: 167–178 (1987).Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Weisbrod S: Active chromatin. Nature (London) 297: 289–295 (1982).Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Wu RS, Panusz HT, Hatch CT, Bonner WM: Histones and their modifications. Crit Rev Biochem 20: 201–263 (1986).Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Zweidler A: Resolution of histones by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis in the presence of nonionic detergents. Methods Cell Biol 17: 223–233 (1978).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Charles P. Moehs
    • 1
  • Elizabeth F. McElwain
    • 1
  • Steven Spiker
    • 1
  1. 1.Genetics DepartmentNorth Carolina State UniversityRaleighUSA

Personalised recommendations