MeCP2 is a transcriptional repressor with abundant binding sites in genomic chromatin

X Nan, F J Campoy, Adrian Bird

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

MeCP2 is an abundant mammalian protein that binds to methylated CpG. We have found that native and recombinant MeCP2 repress transcription in vitro from methylated promoters but do not repress nonmethylated promoters. Repression is nonlinearly dependent on the local density of methylation, becoming significant at the density found in bulk vertebrate genomic DNA. Transient transfection using fusions with the GAL4 DNA binding domain identified a region of MeCP2 that is capable of long-range repression in vivo. Moreover, MeCP2 is able to displace histone H1 from preassembled chromatin that contains methyl-CpG. These properties, together with the abundance of MeCP2 and the high frequency of its 2 bp binding site, suggest a role as a global transcriptional repressor in vertebrate genomes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)471-81
Number of pages11
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 21 Feb 1997

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Animals
  • Binding Sites
  • Brain Chemistry
  • Chromatin
  • Chromosomal Proteins, Non-Histone
  • DNA Methylation
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Genome
  • Histones
  • Methyl-CpG-Binding Protein 2
  • Nucleosomes
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Rats
  • Repressor Proteins
  • Transcription, Genetic


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