Being distinct from bacteria and eukaryotes, Archaea constitute a third domain of living things. The DNA replication, transcription, and translation machineries of Archaea are more similar to those of eukaryotes, whereas the genes involved in metabolic processes show more similarity to their bacterial counterparts. We report here that TK0471/TrmB-like 2 (TrmBL2), in addition to histone, is a novel type of abundant chromosomal protein in the model euryarchaeon Thermococcus kodakarensis. The chromosome of T. kodakarensis can be separated into regions enriched either with histone, in which the genetic material takes on a "beads-on-a-string" appearance, or with TK0471/TrmBL2, in which it assumes a thick fibrous structure. TK0471/TrmBL2 binds to both coding and intergenic regions and represses transcription when bound to the promoter region. These results show that the archaeal chromosome is organized into heterogeneous structures and that TK0471/TrmBL2 acts as a general chromosomal protein as well as a global transcriptional repressor.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology