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Histone Deacetylases Regulate Multicellular Development in the Social Amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum

Sawarkar, Ritwick and Visweswariah, Sandhya S and Nellen, Wolfgang and Nanjundiah, Vidyanand (2009) Histone Deacetylases Regulate Multicellular Development in the Social Amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum. In: Journal of Molecular Biology, 391 (5). pp. 833-848.

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Epigenetic modifications of histones regulate gene expression and lead to the establishment and maintenance of cellular phenotypes during development. Histone acetylation depends on a balance between the activities of histone acetyltransferases and histone deacetylases (HDACs) and influences transcriptional regulation. In this study, we analyse the roles of HDACs during growth and development of one of the cellular slime moulds, the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum. The inhibition of HDAC activity by trichostatin A results in histone hyperacetylation and a delay in cell aggregation and differentiation. Cyclic AMP oscillations are normal in starved amoebae treated with trichostatin A but the expression of a subset of cAMP-regulated genes is delayed. Bioinformatic analysis indicates that there are four genes encoding putative HDACs in D. discoideum. Using biochemical, genetic and developmental approaches, we demonstrate that one of these four genes, hdaB, is dispensable for growth and development under laboratory conditions. A knockout of the hdaB gene results in a social context-dependent phenotype: hdaB- cells develop normally but sporulate less efficiently than the wild type in chimeras. We infer that HDAC activity is important for regulating the timing of gene expression during the development of D. discoideum and for defining aspects of the phenotype that mediate social behaviour in genetically heterogeneous groups.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Journal of Molecular Biology
Publisher: Elsevier Science
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to Elsevier Science.
Keywords: histone acetylation;trichostatin A;cyclic AMP;cell adhesion;heterochrony
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Molecular Reproduction, Development & Genetics
Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Date Deposited: 16 Dec 2009 09:54
Last Modified: 19 Sep 2010 05:47
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/23822

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