Independent formation of DNaseI hypersensitive sites in the murine β- globin locus control region

M. A. Bender, Michelle G. Mehaffey, Agnes Telling, Bruce Hug, Timothy J. Ley, Mark Groudine, Steven Fiering

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37 Scopus citations


Mammalian β-globin loci are composed of multiple orthologous genes whose expression is erythroid specific and developmentally regulated. The expression of these genes both from the endogenous locus and from transgenes is strongly influenced by a linked 15-kilobase region of clustered DNaseI hypersensitive sites (HSs) known as the locus control region (LCR). The LCR encompasses 5 major HSs, each of which is highly homologous among humans, mice, and other mammals. To analyze the function of individual HSs in the endogenous murine β-globin LCR, we have used homologous recombination in embryonic stem cells to produce 5 mouse lines, each of which is deficient for 1 of these major HSs. In this report, we demonstrate that deletion of the conserved region of 5'HS 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5/6 abolishes HS formation at the deletion site but has no influence on the formation of the remaining HSs in the LCR. Therefore, in the endogenous murine locus, there is no dominant or initiating site whose formation must precede the formation of the other HSs. This is consistent with the idea that HSs form autonomously. We discuss the implications of these findings for current models of β-globin regulation. (C) 2000 American Society of Hematology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3600-3604
Number of pages5
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 1 2000


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