PerspectiveCircadian Rhythms

A New Histone Code for Clocks?

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  30 Sep 2011:
Vol. 333, Issue 6051, pp. 1833-1834
DOI: 10.1126/science.1212842

You are currently viewing the summary.

View Full Text

Log in to view the full text

Log in through your institution

Log in through your institution


The DNA of eukaryotic cells is wrapped around proteins, mainly histones, in a complex called chromatin. According to the famous histone code hypothesis of Allis and colleagues, posttranslational modifications of these histone proteins serve not necessarily to change the stability of chromatin structure, but rather as combinatorial recognition sites for the binding of other proteins that either modify chromatin or directly modulate transcription (1). Several recent articles (28), including that by DiTacchio et al. on page 1881 of this issue (9), show that the circadian clock that governs diurnal rhythms of physiology and behavior uses this histone code extensively. But how?