Boundaries of loop domains (insulators): Determinants of chromosome form and function in multicellular eukaryotes

Darya Chetverina, Miki Fujioka, Maksim Erokhin, Pavel Georgiev, James B. Jaynes, Paul Schedl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Chromosomes in multicellular animals are subdivided into a series of looped domains. In addition to being the underlying principle for organizing the chromatin fiber, looping is critical for processes ranging from gene regulation to recombination and repair. The subdivision of chromosomes into looped domains depends upon a special class of architectural elements called boundaries or insulators. These elements are distributed throughout the genome and are ubiquitous building blocks of chromosomes. In this review, we focus on features of boundaries that are critical in determining the topology of the looped domains and their genetic properties. We highlight the properties of fly boundaries that are likely to have an important bearing on the organization of looped domains in vertebrates, and discuss the functional consequences of the observed similarities and differences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1600233
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


  • TADs
  • chromosome architecture
  • gene regulation
  • insulators
  • loop topology
  • looped domain


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