Table 1

Sites and functions of histone lysine methylation

Histone lysine

Function(s)

Histone lysine methyltransferases*


H1 K26

Transcriptional silencing

Hs EZH2 (catalytic subunit of Polycomb repressive complex 3) [3]

H3 K4

Transcriptional activation

Dm Trx; Hs MLL1 (ALL-1, HRX), MLL2 (ALR-1), and MLL3 (HALR)

Transcriptional activation and elongation

Hs SET1; Sc SET1

Transcriptional activation

Hs SET7/9

Transcriptional activation (in conjunction with ASH1-mediated methylation of H3 K9 and H4 K20)

Dm ASH1

H3 K9

Heterochromatic and euchromatic silencing; DNA methylation

Dm Su(var)3-9; Hs and Mm SUVAR39H1 and UVAR39H2; Sp CLR4

Euchromatic silencing; DNA methylation

Hs and Mm G9a; Hs GLP1 (EuHMT1)

Euchromatic silencing

Hs and Mm ESET (SETDB1)

Heterochromatic silencing; DNA methylation

Nc DIM-5

Heterochromatic silencing; DNA methylation

At KRYPTONITE

Transcriptional activation (in conjunction with ASH1-mediated methylation of H3 K4 and H4 K20)

Dm ASH1

H3 K27

Euchromatic silencing

Dm E(z); Hs EZH1 and EZH2 (catalytic subunit of Polycomb repressive complex 2)

Euchromatic silencing

Hs and Mm G9a

H3 K36

Transcriptional elongation and silencing

Sc SET2

Transcriptional regulation

Mm NSD1

H3 K79

Demarcation of euchromatin

Sc and Hs DOT1 (a non-SET domain histone lysine methyltransferase)

H4 K20

Cell cycle-dependent silencing, mitosis and cytokinesis [52,53]

Hs and Dm SET8

Heterochromatic silencing

Dm, Mm, and Hs SUV4-20H1 and SUV4-20H2 [48]

Transcriptional regulation

Mm NSD1

Transcriptional activation (in conjunction with ASH1-mediated methylation of H3 K4 and H3 K9)

Dm ASH1

Recruitment of checkpoint protein Crb2 to sites of DNA damage

Sp SET9 [49]


Histone lysine methylation sites, functions, and associated histone lysine methyltransferases, which are listed according to the lysine that they methylate. *Species abbreviations: At, Arabidopsis thaliana; Dm, Drosophila melanogaster; Hs, Homo sapiens; Mm, Mus musculus; Nc, Neurospora crassa; Sc, Saccharomyces cerevisiae; Sp, Schizosaccharomyces pombe. Adapted from [54-56]; additional references listed in the table are those not cited in these reviews.

Dillon et al. Genome Biology 2005 6:227   doi:10.1186/gb-2005-6-8-227