The Mi-2/NuRD complex associates with pericentromeric heterochromatin during S phase in rapidly proliferating lymphoid cells

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Chromosomal replication results in the duplication not only of DNA sequence but also of the patterns of histone modification, DNA methylation, and nucleoprotein structure that constitute epigenetic information. Pericentromeric heterochromatin in human cells is characterized by unique patterns of histone and DNA modification. Here, we describe association of the Mi-2/NuRD complex with specific segments of pericentromeric heterochromatin consisting of Satellite II/III DNA located on human chromosomes 1, 9, and 16 in some but not all cell types. This association is linked in part to DNA replication and chromatin assembly and may suggest a role in these processes. Mi-2/NuRD accumulation is independent of Polycomb association and is characterized by a unique pattern of histone modification. We propose that Mi-2/NuRD constitutes an enzymatic component of a pathway for assembly and maturation of chromatin utilized by rapidly proliferating lymphoid cells for replication of constitutive heterochromatin.

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