Research Positions Available:
Histone Acetylation and Gene Expression in Drosophila
Several research positions (postdoctoral and/or research associate)
are immediately available in the laboratory of Dr. C. David Allis.
Please note that my lab, presently located in Rochester, NY (visit
our current web site at:
will be relocating to the University of Virginia Health Science
Center in Charlottesville, Virginia (for details see below).
Our Drosphila studies are being supported in part by a Human
Frontier of Science Program that involves active collaborations
between the labs of Mitzi Kuroda, Bryan Turner and Peter Becker. In
addition, we are closely aligned with the laboratories of John
Lucchesi, John Belote and Joel Eissenberg. Preference will be given
to applicants with background/training in Drosophila. Because of our
close ongoing collaboration with the Lucchesi lab (Emory University,
http://www.emory.edu/BIOLOGY/JCL/main.htm), it would be possible to
consider a research experience in both groups where appropriate.
Our studies focus upon understanding the biological function of
histone acetylation and the enzyme systems responsible for its
establishment and maintenance using yeast, Tetrahymena and Drosophila
as experimental models. Antibodies have been developed that are
highly selective for both unacetylated and acetylated core histone
N-termini, and these antibodies react appropriately in all organisms
tested, including Drosophila. These antibodies are being used in
pairwise sets to fractionate chromatin by cross-linking and
immunoaffinity methods. By determining the DNA sequences associated,
we are testing the general hypothesis that changes in the level of
histone acetylation (hyper- or hypoacetylation) is correlated with
alterations in gene expression.
Currents efforts also involve understanding the contributions made
by other potential HATs including the Drosophila homolog of Gcn5p.
Recently, we have also shown that a member of the SAS2 family,
yEsa1p, possesses HAT activity and that it preferentially acetylates
specific histones at unique sites. Unlike the other SAS2 family
members, this gene is essential for growth and thus represents the
first HAT required for growth in yeast. Interestingly, this protein
is similar to a protein involved in dosage compensation if flies
dMofp (Hilfiker et al., 1997).
1.Brownell, J.E., Zhou, J., Ranalli, T., Kobayashi, R., Edmondson,
D.G., Roth, S.Y. and Allis, C.D. (1996) Tetrahymena histone
acetyltransferase A: A homolog to yeast Gcn5p linking histone
acetylation to gene activation. Cell 84, 843-851. 2.Brownell, J.E.and
Allis, C.D. (1996) Special HATs for special occasions:
Linking histone acetylation to chromatin assembly and gene
activation. Curr. Op. Genet. and Dev. 6, 176-184. 3.Braunstein,
M.,Sobel, R.E., Allis, C.D., Turner, B.M. and Broach, J.R. (1996)
Efficient transcriptional silencing in Saccharomyces cerevisiae
requires a heterochromatin histone acetylation pattern. Mol. Cell.
Biol. 16, 4349-4356. 4.Kuo, M.-H., Brownell, J.E., Sobel,
R.E.,Ranalli, T.A., Cook, R.G., Edmondson, D.G., Roth, S.Y. and
Allis, C.D.(1996) Transcription-associated acetylation of histones H3
and H4 at specific lysines by Gcn5p. Nature 383, 269-272. 5.Roth,
S.Y. and Allis, C.D. (1996) The subunit exchange model of histone
acetylation. Trends in Cell Biol. 6, 371-375 6.Roth, S.Y. and Allis,
C.D. (1996) Histone acetylation and chromatin assembly: a single
escort, multiple dances? Cell 87, 5-8. 7.Mizzen, C.A, Yang, X.-J.,
Kokubo, T., Brownell, J.E., Bannister, A.J., Owen-Hughes, T.,
Workman, J., Berger, S.L., Kouzarides, T., Nakatani, Y. Allis, C.D.
(1996) The TAFII230/250 subunit of TFIID has histone
acetyltransferase activity Cell 87, 1261-1270. 8. Wang, L, Mizzen,
C., Brownell, J.E., Ying, C., Candau, R., Barlev, N., Allis, C.D.,
and Berger, S.L. (1997) Histone acetyltransferase activity is
conserved between yeast and human GCN5, and is required for
complementation of growth and transcriptional activation. Mol. Cell
Biol. 17, 519-527. 9.Candau, R., Zhou, J., Allis, C.D. and Berger,
S.L. (1997) Both histone acetyltransferase activity and interaction
with ADA2 are critical for GCN5 function in vivo. EMBO J. 16, 555-565
10. Lin, R., Allis, C.D., Elledge, S.J. (1996) PAT1: An
evolutionarily conserved acetyltransferase homolog, is required for
multiple steps in the cell cycle. Genes to Cells 1, 923-942 11.Grant,
P.A., Duggan, L., Cote, J., Roberts, S.M., Brownell, J.E., Candau,
R., Ohba, R., Owen-Hughes, T., Allis, C.D., Winston, F., Berger,
S.L., and Workman, J.L. (1997). Yeast Gcn5 functions in two
multisubunit complexes to acetylate nucleosomal histones:
characterization of an Ada complex and the SAGA (Spt/Ada) complex .
Genes Dev. 11, 1640-1650.
12.Spencer, T.E., Jenster, G., Allis, C.D., Zhou, J., Mizzen, C.A.,
McKenna N.J., Onate, S.A., Tsai, S.Y., Tsai, M.-J. and O'Malley,
B.W. (1997) Steroid receptor co-activator-1 is a histone
acetyltransferase. Nature 389: 194-198.
13.Kuo, M.-H., Zhou, J., Jambeck, P., Churchill, M. and Allis, C.D.
(1998) Histone acetyltransferase activity of yeast Gcn5p is required
for the activation of downstream target genes in vivo Genes Dev., in
14. Smith, E., Eisen, A., Gu W., Sattah, M.. Pannuti, A., Zhou,
J, Cook, R.G., Lucchesi, J.C. and Allis, C.D. (1998) Yeast ESA1 is a
histone acetyltransferase and is essential for growth, Proc. Natl.
Acad. Sci., USA , submitted.
15. Smith, E., Belote, J.M.. and Allis, C.D. (1998) Cloning and
molecular characterization of the Drosophila homolog of the histone
acetyltransferase PCAF, Nucleic Acids Res. submitted
The Allis lab is on the move!
NOTE: Sometime this summer (1998), pending the completion of
renovations, the Allis lab will be relocating to the University of
Virginia Health Science Center in Charlottesville, Virginia. The
above positions are available immediately (i.e. beginning in
Rochester, NY). However, individuals able to join the lab group
immediately should also be willing to make the move to
Charlottesville, VA sometime this summer. Individuals may also
apply who would only be able to join the lab in Virginia when it is ready.
Charlottesville is an attractive city nestled in the foothills of the
Blue Ridge Mountains and the Shenandoah Valley in central Virginia.
The nearby University of Virginia, founded in 1819 by Thomas
Jefferson, provides an extensive year-round program of cultural,
social and athletic events. The region is rich in historical and
recreational sites, including Jefferson's home, Monticello, and the
Skyline Drive which passes through the Shenandoah National Park. The
Virginia beaches and the Chesapeake Bay are within an easy driving
distance. The city itself has many of the cultural advantages of a
larger city without the attendant problems of congestion, pollution,
and high prices. A variety of living styles including urban
gentrified, suburban, rural and even waterfront are possible. Larger
metropolitan areas within a comfortable day's drive include Richmond,
Washington D.C. and Baltimore.
To apply, contact:
Dr. C. David Allis
Department of Biology
University of Rochester
Rochester, New York 14627
716-275-7586/cda at allis.biology.rochester.edu
visit our web site at
John C. Lucchesi Tel Office (404) 727 4234
Dept. of Biology Tel Lab (404) 727 4946
Emory University Fax (404) 727 2880
1510 Clifton Rd. e-mail Lucchesi at biology.emory.edu