Forming the major protein component of chromatin, histones are essential to the structure and organization of chromosomes, forming the nucleosome around which DNA is packaged and wrapped.
Antibody studies have revealed histones undergo various posttranslational modifications which affect their interaction with DNA and nuclear proteins, allowing them to play diverse roles in biological processes such as cell division, gene regulation and DNA repair. For example, the outer “tail” of H3 and H4, and central core of H2A, H2B and H3 can undergo covalent modification via methylation, ubiquitination, phosphorylation and many other routes. These modifications constitute an epigenetic “histone code,” denoted by the name of the protein, the amino acid modified, and the type of modification. For example, H3K4me1 tells us that the histone H3 underwent monomethylation of lysine residue 4 (denoted by K4).
Research of histone modification in higher eukaryotes has been hampered by lack of a suitable experimental model. Now, researchers at Göttingen’s Max Planck Institute have succeeded in creating a genetic system that enables direct observation of histone modification and function in fruit flies, allowing both in vitro and in vivo effects to be studied. The system involves replacing the canonical histone complement of the flies with experimentally modified and coded histones from other organisms. This provides a direct cellular and antibody assay system, allowing in-depth analysis of histone modification on chromatin assembly, cell function, cell division and many other aspects of cell biology.
We at Novus Biologicals anticipate this new genetic tool will generate a lot of excitement among users of our antibody database.
Novus Biologicals offers many Histone reagents for your research needs including: