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Heterochromatin as an Important Driver of Genome Organization

Authors
  • Penagos-Puig, Andrés
  • Furlan-Magaril, Mayra
Type
Published Article
Journal
Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology
Publisher
Frontiers Media SA
Publication Date
Sep 18, 2020
Volume
8
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3389/fcell.2020.579137
PMID: 33072761
PMCID: PMC7530337
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

Heterochromatin is a constituent of eukaryotic genomes with functions spanning from gene expression silencing to constraining DNA replication and repair. Inside the nucleus, heterochromatin segregates spatially from euchromatin and is localized preferentially toward the nuclear periphery and surrounding the nucleolus. Despite being an abundant nuclear compartment, little is known about how heterochromatin regulates and participates in the mechanisms driving genome organization. Here, we review pioneer and recent evidence that explores the functional role of heterochromatin in the formation of distinct chromatin compartments and how failure of the molecular mechanisms forming heterochromatin leads to disarray of genome conformation and disease.

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