Nucleic Acids Research, 11 May, 2020, DOI：
Histone variant H2A.Z regulates nucleosome unwrapping and CTCF binding in mouse ES cells
Zengqi Wen, Liwei Zhang, Haihe Ruan, Guohong Li
Nucleosome is the basic structural unit of chromatin, and its dynamics plays critical roles in the regulation of genome functions. However, how the nucleosome structure is regulated by histone variants in vivo is still largely uncharacterized. Here, by employing Micrococcal nuclease (MNase) digestion of crosslinked chromatin followed by chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) and paired-end sequencing (MNase-X-ChIP-seq), we mapped unwrapping states of nucleosomes containing histone variant H2A.Z in mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells. We found that H2A.Z nucleosomes are more enriched with unwrapping states compared with canonical nucleosomes. Interestingly, +1 H2A.Z nucleosomes with 30–80 bp DNA is correlated with less active genes compared with +1 H2A.Z nucleosomes with 120–140 bp DNA. We confirmed the unwrapping of H2A.Z nucleosomes under native condition by re-ChIP of H2A.Z and H2A after CTCF CUT&RUN in mouse ES cells. Importantly, we found that depletion of H2A.Z results in decreased unwrapping of H3.3 nucleosomes and increased CTCF binding. Taken together, through MNase-X-ChIP-seq, we showed that histone variant H2A.Z regulates nucleosome unwrapping in vivo and that its function in regulating transcription or CTCF binding is correlated with unwrapping states of H2A.Z nucleosomes.