Nuclear and nucleolar activity of linker histone variant H1.0
- Andrzej Kowalski
- Cellular & Molecular Biology Letters
Histone H1(0) has a number of unusual properties that set it apart from other H1 subtypes (for review see ref. 1). For example, H1(0) synthesis is not strictly coupled to DNA synthesis, it is absent from the embryonic liver of mice (but present shortly after birth) and its synthesis is hormone-dependent in some of the glands of adult rodents. All the H1 subtypes differ in their DNA binding properties, and H1(0) has been shown to be preferentially associated with nuclease-resistant chromatin. These features suggest that the H1(0) may have a role in developmental gene control. To investigate this further, we have fractionated the H1(0)-containing nucleosomes of chromatin from adult mouse liver. We report here that the gene for alpha-fetoprotein, which is expressed in embryonic tissue but repressed soon after birth, is preferentially associated with the H1(0)-containing nucleosomes. The related gene for albumin, which is expressed in both embryonic and adult tissues, is absent from the H1(0)-containing nucleosome fraction. These results support a role for histone H1(0) in the control of gene expression.