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Enzyme controls transport of genomic building blocks
Date:3/6/2014

ecessary to maintain a certain cellular identity. For example, heart genes needs only to be turned on in heart cells, but turned off in other cell types.

"We show that TLK can boost the supply of histones at critical time points. By controlling the transport of histones to our DNA, TLK and Asf1 ensure that the chromatin architecture and its information are copied correctly during cell division, so that cell identity is maintained", explains Ilnaz Klimovskaia.

Loss of chromatin integrity in cancer development

A tight coordination between DNA duplication and supply of major chromatin building blocks like histones, are crucial to maintain normal function of our cells. If the chromatin architecture is wrong, it can affect both gene expression as well as the stability of our DNA. Together, this is a dangerous cocktail that might fuel cellular changes and lead to cancer development.

"Our research adds a new layer to the understanding of how chromatin is maintained when cells in our body divides. This information is crucial to understand how cells maintain their identity and protect their genome, which is essential to avoid cancer development", says associate professor Anja Groth, who has been heading the research team.

The next step for the research team is to dig deeper into the understanding of how chromatin duplication is controlled. The team is also exploring whether targeting of the TLK enzyme could be useful in cancer therapy, as they speculate that reducing the supply of histones in highly dividing cancer cells, might make tumor cells more vulnerable to already existing cancer drugs.


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Contact: Katrine Sonne-Hansen
katrine.sonne@bric.ku.dk
45-21-32-90-40
University of Copenhagen
Source:Eurekalert  

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