Structure, spacing, and phasing of nucleosomes on isolated forms of mature simian virus 40 chromosomes
Journal of Biological Chemistry
Mature Simian virus 40 (SV40) chromosomes were isolated from infected CV-1 monkey cells by a hypotonic extraction method that not only allowed replicating viral chromosomes to faithfully continue DNA replication in vitro, but also was found to assemble nascent DNA into nucleosomes with a structure and arrangement typical of native viral chromosomes. Detailed analysis of the DNA and nucleoprotein products from micrococcal nuclease and DNase I digestion of mature viral chromosomes assembled in
... act cells showed that the structure of SV40 and CV-1 cellular nucleosomes was the same. Furthermore, the histone composition of viral chromosome was indistinguishable from that of its host. In contrast to the identity in nucleosome structure, nucleosome spacing on isolated SV40 chromosomes was not as regular as on cellular chromatin. When 1% of the DNA was solubilized by micrococcal nuclease, as many as 20 cellular DNA bands were clearly resolved by gel electrophoresis, but only 6 to 7 viral DNA bands were observed and they were broader and less well resolved. In addition, micrococcal nuclease digested SV40 chromosomes at a faster initial rate and to a greater extent than CV-1 chromatin present in the same tube. Either BglI or EcoRI restriction endonuclease cut a single site in 30% of the SV40 chromosomes which suggested that viral nucleosomes were not located in a unique phase with respect to DNA sequence, but appeared to be randomly spaced around the genome. Viral chromosome structure was basically unaltered in hypotonically extracted chromosomes exposed to 200 or 600 mM NaCl and in isotonically extracted chromosomes prepared in the presence of Triton X-100 and EDTA. These results confirm and extend our previous data on the arrangement of SV40 nucleosomes inside isolated nuclei and demonstrate that the structure of viral chromosomes was not altered by the isolation procedures employed. The data are consistent with a model in which an average of 22 nucleosomes, randomly distributed around the SV40 genome, are separated by non-nucleosomal spacer regions which account for about 20% of the total DNA.