Integration of kinase and calcium signaling at 1 the level of chromatin underlies inducible gene activation in T cells

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • External authors:
  • Ruth Brignall
  • Pierre Cauchy
  • Sarah L. Bevington Bevington
  • Bethany Gorman
  • Angela O. Pisco
  • James Bagnall
  • Christopher Boddington
  • William Rowe
  • Kevin Rich
  • Lorraine Schmidt
  • Nigel P. Dyer
  • Sascha Ott
  • Peter N Cockerill


TCR signaling pathways cooperate to activate the inducible transcription factors NF-B, NFAT and AP-1. Here, using the calcium ionophore ionomycin and/or PMA on Jurkat T cells, we show that the gene expression program associated with activation of TCR signaling is closely related to specific chromatin landscapes. We find that calcium and kinase signaling cooperate to induce chromatin remodeling at ~2100 chromatin regions, which demonstrate enriched binding motifs for inducible factors and correlate with target gene expression. We found that these regions typically function as inducible enhancers. Many of these elements contain composite NFAT/AP-1 sites, which typically support cooperative binding, thus further reinforcing the need for cooperation between calcium and kinase signaling in the activation of genes in T cells. In contrast, treatment with PMA or ionomycin alone induces chromatin remodeling at far fewer regions (~600 and ~350, respectively), which mostly represent a subset of those induced by co-stimulation. This suggests that the integration of T cell receptor signaling largely occurs at the level of chromatin, which we propose plays a crucial role in regulating T cell activation.

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Immunology
Early online date10 Oct 2017
StatePublished - 2017