Researchers identify novel mechanism for regulation of gene expression

Sep 26, 2008

The Stowers Institute's Conaway Lab has demonstrated that an enzyme called Uch37 is kept in check when it is part of a human chromatin remodeling complex, INO80. The results were published in today's issue of Molecular Cell.

Uch37 is a "deubiquitinating enzyme" that can remove protein tags (called ubiquitin) from other proteins. The presence of one kind of ubiquitin tag on a protein can mark it for destruction, but others serve as marks to affect the activity of a protein. INO80 is a chromatin remodeling complex that is believed to function in both gene regulation and DNA repair by "unpacking" DNA from nucleosomes to allow access to chromosomal DNA.

Previously, the Conaway Lab demonstrated that Uch37 is associated with another multiprotein complex, the proteasome — a large protein complex that degrades unneeded or damaged proteins. In the new paper, the team shows that when bound to INO80, Uch37 can also be activated in the presence of proteasomes. Although the mechanism involved isn't totally clear, it seems to occur via a "touch and go" mechanism, in which proteasomes interact transiently with Uch37.

"Our findings suggest that activation of INO80-associated Uch37 by transient association of proteasomes with the INO80 complex could be one way proteasomes help to regulate gene expression," said Tingting Yao, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Research Fellow and lead author on the paper.

"Tingting's discovery of communication between INO80 and the proteasome provides new clues into the functions of both of these regulatory complexes," said Joan Conaway, Ph.D., Investigator and senior author on the paper. "In addition, it provides new insights into how deubiquitinating enzymes can be regulated — the ability to regulate these enzymes is very important because promiscuous removal of ubiquitin marks could lead to a failure to regulate properly the activities or levels of key enzymes and proteins in cells."

Source: Stowers Institute for Medical Research

Explore further: Honey bees sting Texas man about 1,000 times

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Social Security spent $300M on 'IT boondoggle'

7 hours ago

(AP)—Six years ago the Social Security Administration embarked on an aggressive plan to replace outdated computer systems overwhelmed by a growing flood of disability claims.

Cheaper wireless plans cut into AT&T 2Q profit

7 hours ago

(AP)—AT&T posted lower net income for the latest quarter due to cheaper cellphone plans it introduced as a response to aggressive pricing from smaller competitor T-Mobile US.

Awarded a Pell Grant? Better double-check

7 hours ago

(AP)—Potentially tens of thousands of students awarded a Pell Grant or other need-based federal aid for the coming school year could find it taken away because of a mistake in filling out the form.

Recommended for you

Study indicates large raptors in Africa used for bushmeat

10 hours ago

Bushmeat, the use of native animal species for food or commercial food sale, has been heavily documented to be a significant factor in the decline of many species of primates and other mammals. However, a new study indicates ...

The microbes make the sake brewery

11 hours ago

A sake brewery has its own microbial terroir, meaning the microbial populations found on surfaces in the facility resemble those found in the product, creating the final flavor according to research published ahead of print ...

Fighting bacteria—with viruses

12 hours ago

Research published today in PLOS Pathogens reveals how viruses called bacteriophages destroy the bacterium Clostridium difficile (C. diff), which is becoming a serious problem in hospitals and healthcare institutes, due to its re ...

User comments : 0