PubMed | The Center for Molecular Medicine and Genetics
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Gene therapy & molecular biology | Year: 2010
The ordered packaging of DNA within the nucleus of somatic cells reflects a dynamic supportive structure that facilitates stable transcription interrupted by intermittent cycles of extreme condensation. This dynamic mode of packing and unpacking chromatin is intimately linked to the ability of the genome to specifically complex with both histones and non-histone proteins. Understanding the underlying mechanism that governs the formation of higher order chromatin structures is a key to understanding how local architecture modulates transcription. In part, the formation of these structures appears to be regulated through genomic looping that is dynamically mediated by attachment to the nuclear scaffold/matrix at S/MARs, i.e., Scaffold/Matrix Attachment Regions. Although the mechanism guiding the formation and use of these higher-ordered structures remains unknown, S/MARs continue to reveal a multitude of roles in development and the pathogenesis of disease.