In mammals, heterochromatin is characterized by DNA methylation at CpG dinucleotides and methylation at lysine 9 of histone H3. It is currently unclear whether there is a coordinated transmission of these two epigenetic modifications through DNA replication. Here we show that the methyl-CpG binding protein MBD1 forms a stable complex with histone H3-K9 methylase SETDB1. Moreover, during DNA replication, MBD1 recruits SETDB1 to the large subunit of chromatin assembly factor CAF-1 to form an S phase-specific CAF-1/MBD1/SETDB1 complex that facilitates methylation of H3-K9 during replication-coupled chromatin assembly. In the absence of MBD1, H3-K9 methylation is lost at multiple genomic loci and results in activation of p53BP2 gene, normally repressed by MBD1 in HeLa cells. Our data suggest a model in which H3-K9 methylation by SETDB1 is dependent on MBD1 and is heritably maintained through DNA replication to support the formation of stable heterochromatin at methylated DNA.
SciCrunch is a data sharing and display platform. Anyone can create a custom portal where they can select searchable subsets of hundreds of data sources, brand their web pages and create their community. SciCrunch will push data updates automatically to all portals on a weekly basis. User communities can also add their own data to SciCrunch, however this is not currently a free service.