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Sometimes one just isn't enough: do vertebrates contain an H2A.Z hyper-variant?

Monika Mehta, Hyun-Soo Kim and Michael-Christopher Keogh*

Author Affiliations

Department of Cell Biology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York, NY 10461, USA

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Journal of Biology 2010, 9:3  doi:10.1186/jbiol214

Published: 21 January 2010


How much functional specialization can one component histone confer on a single nucleosome? The histone variant H2A.Z seems to be an extreme example. Genome-wide distribution maps show non-random (and evolutionarily conserved) patterns, with localized enrichment or depletion giving a tantalizing suggestion of function. Multiple post-translational modifications on the protein indicate further regulation. An additional layer of complexity has now been uncovered: the vertebrate form is actually encoded by two non-allelic genes that differ by expression pattern and three amino acids.

See research articles webcite and webcite.