EVOGENE seminar: Rein Aasland
Long distance gene regulation in chromatin
Many genes are subject to regulation from long distance. In animal cells, tissue-specific cis-regulatory elements such as enhancers can contact and influence promoters that are separated by tens or hundreds of thousand base pairs on the same chromosome. It has recently become clear that enhancers are themselves also transcription units with many of the same features as promoters. Yet, it is still unclear how enhancers and promoters communicate productively to regulate gene expression. What distinguishes enhancers from promoters? Are enhancers subject to epigenetic regulation? I will present data from our investigations of the role of a particular histone modification that is characteristic for active enhancer chromatin and discuss these in light of emerging ideas for gene regulation.