Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Title: Correlated Spatio-Temporal Fluctuations in Chromatin Compaction States Characterize Stem Cells
Authors: Talwar, Shefali
Kumar, Abhishek
Rao, Madan
Menon, Gautam I.
Shivashankar, G.V.
Issue Date: Feb-2013
Publisher: Biophysical Society
Citation: Biophysical Journal, 2013, Vol.104, p 553-564
Abstract: Stem cells integrate signals from the microenvironment to generate lineage-specific gene expression programs upon differentiation. Undifferentiated cell nuclei are easily deformable, with an active transcriptome, whereas differentiated cells have stiffer nuclei and condensed chromatin. Chromatin organization in the stem cell state is known to be highly dynamic but quantitative characterizations of its plasticity are lacking. Using fluorescence imaging, we study the spatio-temporal dynamics of nuclear architecture and chromatin compaction in mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells and differentiated states. Individual ES cells exhibit a relatively narrow variation in chromatin compaction, whereas primary Mouse embryonic fibroblasts (PMEF) show broad distributions. However, spatial correlations in chromatin compaction exhibit an emergent length scale in PMEFs, although they are unstructured and longer ranged in ES cells. We provide evidence for correlated fluctuations with large amplitude and long intrinsic timescales, including an oscillatory component, in both chromatin compaction and nuclear area in ES cells. Such fluctuations are largely frozen in PMEF. The role of actin and Lamin A/C in modulating these fluctuations is described. A simple theoretical formulation reproduces the observed dynamics. Our results suggest that, in addition to nuclear plasticity, correlated spatio-temporal structural fluctuations of chromatin in undifferentiated cells characterize the stem cell state.
Description: Restricted Access. An open-access version is available at (one of the alternative locations)
ISSN: 0006-3495
Alternative Location:
Copyright: 2013 Biophysical Society
Appears in Collections:Research Papers (TP)

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
2013_Biophysical Journal_V104_p553.pdf
  Restricted Access
Restricted Access2.27 MBAdobe PDFView/Open Request a copy

Items in RRI Digital Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.