Establishing how mammalian chromosome replication is regulated and how groups of replication origins are organized into replication bands will significantly increase our understanding of chromosome organization. Replication time bands in mammalian chromosomes show overall congruency with structural R- and G-banding patterns as revealed by different chromosome banding techniques. Thus, chromosome bands reflect variations in the longitudinal structure and function of the chromosome, but little is known about the structural basis of the metaphase chromosome banding pattern. At the microscopic level, both structural R and G bands and replication bands occupy discrete domains along chromosomes, suggesting separation by distinct boundaries. The purpose of this study was to determine replication timing differences encompassing a boundary between differentially replicating chromosomal bands. Using competitive PCR on replicated DNA from flow-sorted cell cycle fractions, we have analyzed the replication timing of markers spanning roughly 5 Mb of human chromosome 13q14.3/q21.1. This is only the second report of high-resolution analysis of replication timing differences across an R/G-band boundary. In contrast to previous work, however, we find that band boundaries are defined by a gradient in replication timing rather than by a sharp boundary separating R and G bands into functionally distinct chromatin compartments. These findings indicate that topographical band boundaries are not defined by specific sequences or structures.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||Molecular and Cellular Biology|
|State||Published - Oct 1997|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology