The chromatin remodelling enzymes SNF2H and SNF2L position nucleosomes adjacent to CTCF and other transcription

Nicola Wiechens (Lead / Corresponding author), Vijender Singh, Triantafyllos Gkikopoulos, Pieta Schofield, Sonia Rocha, Thomas Owen-Hughes

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Within the genomes of metazoans, nucleosomes are highly organised adjacent to the binding sites for a subset of transcription factors. Here we have sought to investigate which chromatin remodelling enzymes are responsible for this. We find that the ATP-dependent chromatin remodelling enzyme SNF2H plays a major role organising arrays of nucleosomes adjacent to the binding sites for the architectural transcription factor CTCF sites and acts to promote CTCF binding. At many other factor binding sites SNF2H and the related enzyme SNF2L contribute to nucleosome organisation. The action of SNF2H at CTCF sites is functionally important as depletion of CTCF or SNF2H affects transcription of a common group of genes. This suggests that chromatin remodelling ATPase's most closely related to the Drosophila ISWI protein contribute to the function of many human gene regulatory elements.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPLoS Genetics
Publication statusPublished - 28 Mar 2016



  • nucleosome positioning
  • chromatin remodeling
  • CTCF
  • gene regulation
  • chromatin structure

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