Chromatin regulators play fundamental roles in controlling pluripotency and differentiation. We examined the effect of mutations in 703 genes from nearly 70 chromatin-modifying complexes on human embryonic stem cell (ESC) growth. While the vast majority of chromatin-associated complexes are essential for ESC growth, the only complexes that conferred growth advantage upon mutation of their members, were the repressive complexes LSD-CoREST and BHC. Both complexes include the most potent growth-restricting chromatin-related protein, ZMYM2. Interestingly, while ZMYM2 expression is rather low in human blastocysts, its expression peaks in primed ESCs and is again downregulated upon differentiation. ZMYM2-null ESCs overexpress pluripotency genes and show genome-wide promotor-localized histone H3 hyper-acetylation. These mutant cells were also refractory to differentiate in vitro and failed to produce teratomas upon injection into immunodeficient mice. Our results suggest a central role for ZMYM2 in the transcriptional regulation of the undifferentiated state and in the exit-from-pluripotency of human ESCs.
The Chromatin Regulator ZMYM2 Restricts Human Pluripotent Stem Cell Growth and Is Essential for Teratoma Formation
Link to publication: