Kidney cell type-specific changes in the chromatin and transcriptome landscapes following epithelial Hdac1 and Hdac2 knockdown

Academic Article


  • Recent studies have identified at least 20 different kidney cell types based upon chromatin structure and gene expression. Histone deacetylases (HDACs) are epigenetic transcriptional repressors via deacetylation of histone lysines resulting in inaccessi-ble chromatin. We reported that kidney epithelial HDAC1 and HDAC2 activity is critical for maintaining a healthy kidney and pre-venting fluid-electrolyte abnormalities. However, to what extent does Hdac1/Hdac2 knockdown affect chromatin structure and subsequent transcript expression in the kidney? To answer this question, we used single nucleus assay for transposase-accessi-ble chromatin-sequencing (snATAC-seq) and snRNA-seq to profile kidney nuclei from male and female, control, and littermate kidney epithelial Hdac1/Hdac2 knockdown mice. Hdac1/Hdac2 knockdown resulted in significant changes in the chromatin structure predominantly within the promoter region of gene loci involved in fluid-electrolyte balance such as the aquaporins, with both increased and decreased accessibility captured. Moreover, Hdac1/Hdac2 knockdown resulted different gene loci being ac-cessible with a corresponding increased transcript number in the kidney, but among all mice only 24%–30% of chromatin accessibility agreed with transcript expression (e.g., open chromatin and increased transcript). To conclude, although chromatin structure does affect transcription, ~70% of the differentially expressed genes cannot be explained by changes in chromatin accessibility and HDAC1/HDAC2 had a minimal effect on these global patterns. Yet, the genes that are targets of HDAC1 and HDAC2 are critically important for maintaining kidney function.
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    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Hyndman KA; Crossman DK
  • Start Page

  • 45
  • End Page

  • 57
  • Volume

  • 54
  • Issue

  • 2