Variants of sequence family B Thermococcus kodakaraensis DNA polymerase with increased mismatch extension selectivity
2017-08-23, Huber, Claudia, Marx, Andreas
Fidelity and selectivity of DNA polymerases are critical determinants for the biology of life, as well as important tools for biotechnological applications. DNA polymerases catalyze the formation of DNA strands by adding deoxynucleotides to a primer, which is complementarily bound to a template. To ensure the integrity of the genome, DNA polymerases select the correct nucleotide and further extend the nascent DNA strand. Thus, DNA polymerase fidelity is pivotal for ensuring that cells can replicate their genome with minimal error. DNA polymerases are, however, further optimized for more specific biotechnological or diagnostic applications. Here we report on the semi-rational design of mutant libraries derived by saturation mutagenesis at single sites of a 3'-5'-exonuclease deficient variant of Thermococcus kodakaraensis DNA polymerase (KOD pol) and the discovery for variants with enhanced mismatch extension selectivity by screening. Sites of potential interest for saturation mutagenesis were selected by their proximity to primer or template strands. The resulting libraries were screened via quantitative real-time PCR. We identified three variants with single amino acid exchanges-R501C, R606Q, and R606W-which exhibited increased mismatch extension selectivity. These variants were further characterized towards their potential in mismatch discrimination. Additionally, the identified enzymes were also able to differentiate between cytosine and 5-methylcytosine. Our results demonstrate the potential in characterizing and developing DNA polymerases for specific PCR based applications in DNA biotechnology and diagnostics.
Histone H2A C-terminus regulates chromatin dynamics, remodeling, and histone H1 binding
2010-12-09, Vogler, Christine, Huber, Claudia, Waldmann, Tanja, Ettig, Ramona, Braun, Lora, Izzo, Annalisa, Daujat, Sylvain, Chassignet, Isabelle, Längst, Gernot, Schneider, Robert
The tails of histone proteins are central players for all chromatin-mediated processes. Whereas the N-terminal histone tails have been studied extensively, little is known about the function of the H2A C-terminus. Here, we show that the H2A C-terminal tail plays a pivotal role in regulating chromatin structure and dynamics. We find that cells expressing C-terminally truncated H2A show increased stress sensitivity. Moreover, both the complete and the partial deletion of the tail result in increased histone exchange kinetics and nucleosome mobility in vivo and in vitro. Importantly, our experiments reveal that the H2A C-terminus is required for efficient nucleosome translocation by ISWI-type chromatin remodelers and acts as a novel recognition module for linker histone H1. Thus, we suggest that the H2A C-terminal tail has a bipartite function: stabilisation of the nucleosomal core particle, as well as mediation of the protein interactions that control chromatin dynamics and conformation.
CHD3 and CHD4 form distinct NuRD complexes with different yet overlapping functionality
2017, Hoffmeister, Helen, Fuchs, Andreas, Erdel, Fabian, Pinz, Sophia, Gröbner-Ferreira, Regina, Bruckmann, Astrid, Huber, Claudia, Dendorfer, Anne-Sarah, Rippe, Karsten, Längst, Gernot
CHD3 and CHD4 (Chromodomain Helicase DNA binding protein), two highly similar representatives of the Mi-2 subfamily of SF2 helicases, are coexpressed in many cell lines and tissues and have been reported to act as the motor subunit of the NuRD complex (nucleosome remodeling and deacetylase activities). Besides CHD proteins, NuRD contains several repressors like HDAC1/2, MTA2/3 and MBD2/3, arguing for a role as a transcriptional repressor. However, the subunit composition varies among cell- and tissue types and physiological conditions. In particular, it is unclear if CHD3 and CHD4 coexist in the same NuRD complex or whether they form distinct NuRD complexes with specific functions. We mapped the CHD composition of NuRD complexes in mammalian cells and discovered that they are isoform-specific, containing either the monomeric CHD3 or CHD4 ATPase. Both types of complexes exhibit similar intranuclear mobility, interact with HP1 and rapidly accumulate at UV-induced DNA repair sites. But, CHD3 and CHD4 exhibit distinct nuclear localization patterns in unperturbed cells, revealing a subset of specific target genes. Furthermore, CHD3 and CHD4 differ in their nucleosome remodeling and positioning behaviour in vitro. The proteins form distinct CHD3- and CHD4-NuRD complexes that do not only repress, but can just as well activate gene transcription of overlapping and specific target genes.
5-methylcytosine-sensitive variants of Thermococcus kodakaraensis DNA polymerase
2016, Huber, Claudia, von Watzdorf, Janina, Marx, Andreas
DNA methylation of cytosine in eukaryotic cells is a common epigenetic modification, which plays an important role in gene expression and thus affects various cellular processes like development and carcinogenesis. The occurrence of 5-methyl-2'-deoxycytosine (5mC) as well as the distribution pattern of this epigenetic marker were shown to be crucial for gene regulation and can serve as important biomarkers for diagnostics. DNA polymerases distinguish little, if any, between incorporation opposite C and 5mC, which is not surprising since the site of methylation is not involved in Watson-Crick recognition. Here, we describe the development of a DNA polymerase variant that incorporates the canonical 2'-deoxyguanosine 5'-monophosphate (dGMP) opposite C with higher efficiency compared to 5mC. The variant of Thermococcus kodakaraensis (KOD) exo- DNA polymerase was discovered by screening mutant libraries that were built by rational design. We discovered that an amino acid substitution at a single site that does not directly interact with the templating nucleobase, may alter the ability of the DNA polymerase in processing C in comparison to 5mC. Employing these findings in combination with a nucleotide, which is fluorescently labeled at the terminal phosphate, indicates the potential use of the mutant DNA polymerase in the detection of 5mC.