Dynamic interaction between chromatin boundaries in the Drosophila homeotic gene complexes
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Chromatin boundaries, or insulators, partition the genome into structural and functional domains. Previous studies show that insulators can modulate enhancer-promoter interactions and therefore regulate gene expression. Interactions between chromatin boundaries could also alter chromatin structure through an unknown mechanism to regulate gene expression, indirectly. Our lab recently discovered that one Drosophila insulator, SF1, interacts with multiple regions within Antennapedia complex (ANT-C). In order to understand how boundary interactions regulate gene expressions in different tissues, we used the Chromatin Conformation Capture (3C) technique to detect the interactions between DNA segments. By comparing the interaction using tissues with different gene expression patterns or different developmental stages, we found that the chromatin boundary interactions are distinct in tissues with different gene expressions, indicating that boundary interactions play a critical role in altering gene expression in different tissues.