Histone Modifications and the Maintenance of Telomere Integrity.

Author: Jezek M1, Green EM2
Author Information:
1Department of Biological Sciences, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD 21250, USA. mjezek1@umbc.edu.
2Department of Biological Sciences, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD 21250, USA. egreen@umbc.edu.
Conference/Journal: Cells.
Date published: 2019 Feb 25
Other: Volume ID: 8 , Issue ID: 2 , Special Notes: doi: 10.3390/cells8020199. , Word Count: 179

Telomeres, the nucleoprotein structures at the ends of eukaryotic chromosomes, play an integral role in protecting linear DNA from degradation. Dysregulation of telomeres can result in genomic instability and has been implicated in increased rates of cellular senescence and many diseases, including cancer. The integrity of telomeres is maintained by a coordinated network of proteins and RNAs, such as the telomerase holoenzyme and protective proteins that prevent the recognition of the telomere ends as a DNA double-strand breaks. The structure of chromatin at telomeres and within adjacent subtelomeres has been implicated in telomere maintenance pathways in model systems and humans. Specific post-translational modifications of histones, including methylation, acetylation, and ubiquitination, have been shown to be necessary for maintaining a chromatin environment that promotes telomere integrity. Here we review the current knowledge regarding the role of histone modifications in maintaining telomeric and subtelomeric chromatin, discuss the implications of histone modification marks as they relate to human disease, and highlight key areas for future research.

KEYWORDS: histone acetylation; histone methylation; histone modifications; post-translational modifications; telomere position effect; telomeres

PMID: 30823596 DOI: 10.3390/cells8020199