Resolving Heart Regeneration by Replacement Histone Profiling. Academic Article uri icon


  • Chromatin regulation is a principal mechanism governing animal development, yet it is unclear to what extent structural changes in chromatin underlie tissue regeneration. Non-mammalian vertebrates such as zebrafish activate cardiomyocyte (CM) division after tissue damage to regenerate lost heart muscle. Here, we generated transgenic zebrafish expressing a biotinylatable H3.3 histone variant in CMs and derived cell-type-specific profiles of histone replacement. We identified an emerging program of putative¬†enhancers that revise H3.3 occupancy during regeneration, overlaid upon a genome-wide reduction of H3.3 from promoters. In transgenic reporter lines, H3.3-enriched elements directed gene expression in subpopulations of CMs. Other elements increased H3.3 enrichment and displayed enhancer activity in settings of injury- and/or Neuregulin1-elicited CM proliferation. Dozens of consensus sequence motifs containing predicted transcription factor binding sites were enriched in genomic regions with regeneration-responsive H3.3 occupancy. Thus, cell-type-specific regulatory programs of tissue regeneration can be revealed by genome-wide H3.3 profiling.

publication date

  • February 27, 2017