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The basic structural elements of chromatin and chromosomes are reviewed. Then a model involving only three architectural motifs, nucleosomes, chromatin loops and transcription factories/chromomeres, is presented. Loops are tied through transcription factors and RNA polymerases to factories during interphase and to the remnants of those factories, chromomeres, during mitosis. On entry into mitosis, increased adhesiveness between nucleosomes and between factories drives a 'sticky-end' aggregation to the most compact and stable structure, a cylinder of nucleosomes around an axial chromomeric core.

Type

Journal article

Journal

J Cell Sci

Publication Date

09/1995

Volume

108 ( Pt 9)

Pages

2927 - 2935

Keywords

Cell Nucleolus, Cell Nucleus, Chromatin, Chromosome Banding, Chromosomes, Humans, Models, Genetic, Nucleosomes, Transcription, Genetic