Chromatin assembly. Relationship of chromatin structure to DNA sequence during simian virus 40 replication

L. C. Tack, P. M. Wassarman, M. L. DePamphilis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


The accessibility of five specific DNA sequences to six different single site restriction endonucleases was evaluated in replicating and mature simian virus 40 chromosomes isolated by three different methods. Electron microscopic and gel electrophoretic analysis of the DNA digestion products demonstrated that DNA accessibility in chromatin was established within 400 base pairs of replication forks and remained essentially unchanged during production of mature chromosomes and their subsequent re-entry into the replication pool. Saturating amounts of each enzyme reproducibly cut a fraction of the chromosomes, ranging from 13 to 49%. This is consistent with a nearly random phasing of chromatin structure. Examples in which all chromosomes were either cleaved or intact were never observed. Although variation in the accessibility of DNA sites near the origin of replication could be interpreted as preferred phasing in about 25% of the chromosomes, the finding that two isoschizomers, Hpa II and Msp I, did not cut chromosomes to the same extent precludes an unambiguous interpretation of the extents of cleavage of individual restriction enzymes. Since the extent of DNA cleavage observed at each restriction site was essentially indistinguishable in replicating as compared to mature chromosomes, the accesssibility of DNA sequences near the origin is not obviously related to replication. Furthermore, the accessibility of DNA sites on one arm of a single replication fork was the same as the homologous sites of the other arm, consistent with a nearly random phasing of chromatin structure on both arms. This suggests that chromatin assembly occurs independently on the 2 sibling molecules of a single replicating chromosome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8821-8828
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number16
StatePublished - 1981
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Chromatin assembly. Relationship of chromatin structure to DNA sequence during simian virus 40 replication'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this