Molecular Genetics and Genomics

, Volume 270, Issue 1, pp 46–55 | Cite as

Nucleosome transactions on the Hypocrea jecorina ( Trichoderma reesei) cellulase promoter cbh2 associated with cellulase induction

  • S. ZeilingerEmail author
  • M. Schmoll
  • M. Pail
  • R. L. Mach
  • C. P. Kubicek
Original Paper


The 5′ regulatory region of the cbh2 gene of Hypocrea jecorina contains the cbh2 activating element (CAE) which is essential for induction of cbh2 gene expression by sophorose and cellulose. The CAE consists of two motifs, a CCAAT box on the template strand and a GTAATA box on the coding strand, which cooperate during induction. Northern analyses of cbh2 gene expression has revealed an absolute dependence on induction, but no direct effect of Cre1-mediated carbon catabolite repression. Investigation of the chromatin structure in the wild-type strain showed that, under repressing conditions, there is a nucleosome free region (nfr) around the CAE, which is flanked by strictly positioned nucleosomes. Induction results in a loss of positioning of nucleosomes −1 and −2 downstream of the CAE, thus making the TATA box accessible. Simultaneous mutation of both motifs of the CAE, or of the CCAAT-box alone, also leads to shifting of nucleosome −1, which normally covers the TATA-box under repressing conditions, whereas mutation of the GTAATA element results in a narrowing of the nfr, indicating that the proteins that bind to both motifs in the CAE interact with chromatin, although in different ways. A cellulase-negative mutant strain, which has previously been shown to be altered in protein binding to the CAE, still displayed the induction-specific changes in nucleosome structure, indicating that none of the proteins that directly interact with CAE are affected, and that nucleosome rearrangement and induction of cbh2 expression are uncoupled. Interestingly, the carbon catabolite repressor Cre1 is essential for strict nucleosome positioning in the 5′ regulatory sequences of cbh2 under all of the conditions tested, and induction can occur in a promoter that lacks positioned nucleosomes. These data suggest that Cre1, the Hap2/3/5 complex and the GTAATA-binding protein are all involved in nucleosome assembly on the cbh2 promoter, and that the latter two respond to inducing conditions by repositioning nucleosome −1.


Hypocrea jecorina  Trichoderma reesei Chromatin  cbh2 promoter 



This work was supported by a grant from the Fonds zur Förderung Wissenschaftlicher Forschung (P13672) to CPK. We thank A. Czsifersky for providing strain CK11


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Zeilinger
    • 1
    Email author
  • M. Schmoll
    • 1
  • M. Pail
    • 1
  • R. L. Mach
    • 1
  • C. P. Kubicek
    • 1
  1. 1.Microbial Biochemistry and Gene Technology Department, Institute for Chemical EngineeringTechnical University of ViennaWienAustria

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