Christian J. Janzen

Learn More
The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II transactivator CIITA plays a pivotal role in the control of the cellular immune response through the quantitative regulation of MHC class II expression. We have analyzed a region of CIITA with similarity to leucine-rich repeats (LRRs). CIITA LRR alanine mutations abolish both the transactivation capacity(More)
Several biological processes in Trypanosoma brucei are affected by chromatin structure, including gene expression, cell cycle regulation, and life-cycle stage differentiation. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae and other organisms, chromatin structure is dependent upon posttranslational modifications of histones, which have been mapped in detail. The tails of the(More)
To evade the host immune system, several pathogens periodically change their cell-surface epitopes. In the African trypanosomes, antigenic variation is achieved by tightly regulating the expression of a multigene family encoding a large repertoire of variant surface glycoproteins (VSGs). Immune evasion relies on two important features: exposing a single(More)
To start to understand the role of chromatin structure in regulating transcription in trypanosomes, we analyzed covalent modifications on the four core histones of Trypanosoma brucei. We found unusually few modifications in the N-terminal tails, which are abundantly modified in other organisms and whose sequences, but not composition, are highly divergent(More)
Bunyaviruses replicate in the cytoplasm of infected cells. New viral particles are formed by budding of nucleocapsids into the Golgi apparatus. We have previously shown that the IFN-induced human MxA protein inhibits bunyavirus replication by an unknown mechanism. Here we demonstrate that MxA binds to the nucleocapsid protein of La Crosse virus (LACV) and(More)
H2AZ is a widely conserved histone variant that is implicated in protecting euchromatin from the spread of heterochromatin. H2AZ is incorporated into nucleosomes as a heterodimer with H2B, by the SWR1 ATP-dependent chromatin-remodeling complex. We have identified a homolog of H2AZ in the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma brucei, along with a novel variant of(More)
DOT1 is an evolutionarily conserved histone H3 lysine 79 (H3K79) methyltransferase. K79 methylation is associated with transcriptional activation, meiotic checkpoint control, and DNA double-strand break (DSB) responses. Trypanosoma brucei has two homologs, DOT1A and DOT1B, which are responsible for dimethylation and trimethylation of H3K76, respectively(More)
Adenosine-to-inosine editing in the anticodon of tRNAs is essential for viability. Enzymes mediating tRNA adenosine deamination in bacteria and yeast contain cytidine deaminase-conserved motifs, suggesting an evolutionary link between the two reactions. In trypanosomatids, tRNAs undergo both cytidine-to-uridine and adenosine-to-inosine editing, but the(More)
Trypanosoma brucei developed a sophisticated life cycle to adapt to different host environments. Although developmental differentiation of T. brucei has been the topic of intensive research for decades, the mechanisms responsible for adaptation to different host environments are not well understood. We developed stable isotope labeling by amino acids in(More)
Post-translational histone modifications have been studied intensively in several eukaryotes. It has been proposed that these modifications constitute a 'histone code' that specifies epigenetic information for transcription regulation. With a limited number of histone-modifying enzymes, implying less redundancy, Trypanosoma brucei represents an excellent(More)