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By Gerald Litwack (Eds.)

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Johnson and V. G. Allfrey 1963). This increase occurs prior to the induction of a number of enzyme activities, such as tyrosine aminotransferase, commonly used to monitor the hormone response. Studies of histone acetylation in adrenalectomized rats showed that the uptake of radioactive acetate into hepatic histones increases within 30 minutes after injection of hydrocortisone (Allfrey et al, 1966). The magnitude of the increase (about 26% at 30 minutes) corresponds to estimates of the increase in template activity of the chromatin under similar conditions (Dahmus and Bonner, 1965).

Postsynthetic Modifications of Historie Primary Structure 43 response to certain hormones. Growth-associated phosphorylation may be concerned with more generalized and extensive changes in chromosome structure associated with the process of cell division. Of the major histone fractions, HI displays the greatest tissue and species heterogeneity, and it is possible that functional activities of HI are also more diverse than those of the other histones. Analyses of functional aspects of HI modifications will benefit from a more precise knowledge of the location of HI relative to the nucleosome core histones.

Acetylation of histones H3 and H4 reaches a peak at 3-4 hours and declines abruptly by 5 hours. The high acetyl content 1. , 1968). The net effect is a peak in the acetyl content of the histones about 2 hours before maximal rates of RNA synthesis are achieved. Thus, as in the case of lymphocytes responding to PHA, gene activation in the regenerating liver involves changes in the level of histone acetylation which precede the increase in RNA synthetic capacity of the nucleus. The change in the proportions of acetylated and nonacetylated histone subfractions is regulated by mechanisms which influence the removal as well as the attachment of acetyl groups to lysine residues in histones H3 and H4 (Pogo et al, 1968).

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