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Rouse model with transient intramolecular contacts on a timescale of seconds recapitulates folding and fluctuation of yeast chromosomes

Abstract : DNA folding and dynamics along with major nuclear functions are determined by chromosome structural properties, which remain, thus far, elusive in vivo. Here, we combine polymer modeling and single particle tracking experiments to determine the physico-chemical parameters of chromatin in vitro and in living yeast. We find that the motion of reconstituted chromatin fibers can be recapitulated by the Rouse model using mechanical parameters of nu-cleosome arrays deduced from structural simulations. Conversely, we report that the Rouse model shows some inconsistencies to analyze the motion and structural properties inferred from yeast chromosomes determined with chromosome conformation capture techniques (specifically, Hi-C). We hence introduce the Rouse model with Transient Internal Contacts (RouseTIC), in which random association and dissociation occurs along the chromosome contour. The parametrization of this model by fitting motion and Hi-C data allows us to measure the kinetic parameters of the contact formation reaction. Chromosome contacts appear to be transient; associated to a lifetime of seconds and characterized by an attractive energy of-0.3 to-0.5 k B T. We suggest attributing this energy to the occurrence of histone tail-DNA contacts and notice that its amplitude sets chromosomes in 'theta' conditions, in which they are poised for compartmentalization and phase separation.
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Marius Socol, Renjie Wang, Daniel Jost, Pascal Carrivain, Cédric Vaillant, et al.. Rouse model with transient intramolecular contacts on a timescale of seconds recapitulates folding and fluctuation of yeast chromosomes. Nucleic Acids Research, Oxford University Press, 2019, 47 (12), pp.6195-6207. ⟨10.1093/nar/gkz374⟩. ⟨hal-02276944⟩

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