UMMS Affiliation

Program in Bioinformatics and Integrative Biology

Publication Date


Document Type



Amino Acids, Peptides, and Proteins | Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Structural Biology | Bioinformatics | Cell Biology | Cells | Developmental Biology | Embryonic Structures | Genetic Phenomena | Genetics and Genomics


The linker histone H1 is critical to maintenance of higher-order chromatin structures and to gene expression regulation. However, H1 dynamics and its functions in embryonic development remain unresolved. Here, we profiled gene expression, nucleosome positions, and H1 locations in early Drosophila embryos. The results show that H1 binding is positively correlated with the stability of beads-on-a-string nucleosome organization likely through stabilizing nucleosome positioning and maintaining nucleosome spacing. Strikingly, nucleosomes with H1 placement deviating to the left or the right relative to the dyad shift to the left or the right, respectively, during early Drosophila embryonic development. H1 occupancy on genic nucleosomes is inversely correlated with nucleosome distance to the transcription start sites. This inverse correlation reduces as gene transcription levels decrease. Additionally, H1 occupancy is lower at the 5' border of genic nucleosomes than that at the 3' border. This asymmetrical pattern of H1 occupancy on genic nucleosomes diminishes as gene transcription levels decrease. These findings shed new lights into how H1 placement dynamics correlates with nucleosome positioning and gene transcription during early Drosophila embryonic development.

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© The Author(s) 2018. Open Access: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any mediumor format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit

DOI of Published Version



Cell Death Dis. 2018 Jul 9;9(7):765. doi: 10.1038/s41419-018-0819-z. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Cell death and disease

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.



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