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eLife

The zinc finger proteins ZNF644 and WIZ regulate the G9a/GLP complex for gene repression.


PMID 25789554

Abstract

The G9a/GLP complex mediates mono- and dimethylation of Lys9 of histone H3 at specific gene loci, which is associated with transcriptional repression. However, the molecular mechanism by which the G9a/GLP complex is targeted to the specific gene loci for H3K9 methylation is unclear. In this study, with unbiased protein affinity purification, we found ZNF644 and WIZ as two core subunits in the G9a/GLP complex. ZNF644 and WIZ interact with the transcription activation domain of G9a and GLP, respectively. Moreover, both ZNF644 and WIZ contain multiple zinc finger motifs that recognize consensus DNA sequences. ZNF644 and WIZ target G9a and GLP to the chromatin and mediate the G9a/GLP complex-dependent H3K9 methylation as well as gene repression. Thus, our studies reveal two key subunits in the G9a/GLP complex that regulate the function of this histone methyltransferase complex.