Dynamic multifactor hubs interact transiently with sites of active transcription in Drosophila embryos.

Journal: 
Elife
Publication Year: 
2018
Authors: 
Mustafa Mir
Michael R Stadler
Stephan A Ortiz
Colleen E Hannon
Melissa M Harrison
Xavier Darzacq
Michael B Eisen
PubMed link: 
30589412
Public Summary: 
The regulation of transcription requires the coordination of numerous activities on DNA, yet how transcription factors mediate these activities remains poorly understood. Here, we use lattice light-sheet microscopy to integrate single-molecule and high-speed 4D imaging in developing Drosophila embryos to study the nuclear organization and interactions of the key transcription factors Zelda and Bicoid. In contrast to previous studies suggesting stable, cooperative binding, we show that both factors interact with DNA with surprisingly high off-rates. We find that both factors form dynamic subnuclear hubs, and that Bicoid binding is enriched within Zelda hubs. Remarkably, these hubs are both short lived and interact only transiently with sites of active Bicoid-dependent transcription. Based on our observations, we hypothesize that, beyond simply forming bridges between DNA and the transcription machinery, transcription factors can organize other proteins into hubs that transiently drive multiple activities at their gene targets. Editorial note: This article has been through an editorial process in which the authors decide how to respond to the issues raised during peer review. The Reviewing Editor's assessment is that all the issues have been addressed (see decision letter).
Scientific Abstract: 
The regulation of transcription requires the coordination of numerous activities on DNA, yet how transcription factors mediate these activities remains poorly understood. Here, we use lattice light-sheet microscopy to integrate single-molecule and high-speed 4D imaging in developing Drosophila embryos to study the nuclear organization and interactions of the key transcription factors Zelda and Bicoid. In contrast to previous studies suggesting stable, cooperative binding, we show that both factors interact with DNA with surprisingly high off-rates. We find that both factors form dynamic subnuclear hubs, and that Bicoid binding is enriched within Zelda hubs. Remarkably, these hubs are both short lived and interact only transiently with sites of active Bicoid-dependent transcription. Based on our observations, we hypothesize that, beyond simply forming bridges between DNA and the transcription machinery, transcription factors can organize other proteins into hubs that transiently drive multiple activities at their gene targets. Editorial note: This article has been through an editorial process in which the authors decide how to respond to the issues raised during peer review. The Reviewing Editor's assessment is that all the issues have been addressed (see decision letter).