Ush regulates hemocyte-specific gene expression, fatty acid metabolism and cell cycle progression and cooperates with dNuRD to orchestrate hematopoiesis
PublisherPublic Library of Science
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AbstractThe generation of lineage-specific gene expression programmes that alter proliferation capacity, metabolic profile and cell type-specific functions during differentiation from multipotent stem cells to specialised cell types is crucial for development. During differentiation gene expression programmes are dynamically modulated by a complex interplay between sequence-specific transcription factors, associated cofactors and epigenetic regulators. Here, we study U-shaped (Ush), a multi-zinc finger protein that maintains the multipotency of stem cell-like hemocyte progenitors during Drosophila hematopoiesis. Using genomewide approaches we reveal that Ush binds to promoters and enhancers and that it controls the expression of three gene classes that encode proteins relevant to stem cell-like functions and differentiation: cell cycle regulators, key metabolic enzymes and proteins conferring specific functions of differentiated hemocytes. We employ complementary biochemical approaches to characterise the molecular mechanisms of Ush-mediated gene regulation. We uncover distinct Ush isoforms one of which binds the Nucleosome Remodeling and Deacetylation (NuRD) complex using an evolutionary conserved peptide motif. Remarkably, the Ush/NuRD complex specifically contributes to the repression of lineage-specific genes but does not impact the expression of cell cycle regulators or metabolic genes. This reveals a mechanism that enables specific and concerted modulation of functionally related portions of a wider gene expression programme. Finally, we use genetic assays to demonstrate that Ush and NuRD regulate enhancer activity during hemocyte differentiation in vivo and that both cooperate to suppress the differentiation of lamellocytes, a highly specialised blood cell type. Our findings reveal that Ush coordinates proliferation, metabolism and cell type-specific activities by isoform-specific cooperation with an epigenetic regulator.
Identifier to cite or link to this itemhttp://hdl.handle.net/10713/14969
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