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Drosophila neural development undergoes extensive chromatin remodeling and precise epigenetic regulation. However, the roles of chromatin remodeling in establishment and maintenance of cell identity during cell fate transition remain enigmatic. Here, we compared the changes in gene expression, as well as the dynamics of nucleosome positioning and key histone modifications between the four major neural cell types during Drosophila neural development. We find that the neural progenitors can be separated from the terminally differentiated cells based on their gene expression profiles, whereas nucleosome distribution in the flanking regions of transcription start sites fails to identify the relationships between the progenitors and the differentiated cells. H3K27me3 signal in promoters and enhancers can not only distinguish the progenitors from the differentiated cells but also identify the differentiation path of the neural stem cells (NSCs) to the intermediate progenitor cells to the glial cells. In contrast, H3K9ac signal fails to identify the differentiation path, although it activates distinct sets of genes with neuron-specific and glia-related functions during the differentiation of the NSCs into neurons and glia, respectively. Together, our study provides novel insights into the crucial roles of chromatin remodeling in determining cell type during Drosophila neural development.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Genomics, proteomics & bioinformatics
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Nucleotide sequences, usually upstream, which are recognized by specific regulatory transcription factors, thereby causing gene response to various regulatory agents. These elements may be found in both promoter and enhancer regions.
A family of transcription factors that share an N-terminal HELIX-TURN-HELIX MOTIF and bind INTERFERON-inducible promoters to control GENE expression. IRF proteins bind specific DNA sequences such as interferon-stimulated response elements, interferon regulatory elements, and the interferon consensus sequence.
Nucleic acid regulatory sequences that limit or oppose the action of ENHANCER ELEMENTS and define the boundary between differentially regulated gene loci.
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