Mapping the landscape of chromatin dynamics during naïve CD4+ T-cell activation

Muhammad Munir Iqbal, Michael Serralha, Parwinder Kaur, David Martino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


T-cell activation induces context-specific gene expression programs that promote energy generation and biosynthesis, progression through the cell cycle and ultimately cell differentiation. The aim of this study was to apply the omni ATAC-seq method to characterize the landscape of chromatin changes induced by T-cell activation in mature naïve CD4+ T-cells. Using a well-established ex vivo protocol of canonical T-cell receptor signaling, we generated genome-wide chromatin maps of naïve T-cells from pediatric donors in quiescent or recently activated states. We identified thousands of individual chromatin accessibility peaks that are associated with T-cell activation, the majority of which were annotated intronic and intergenic enhancer regions. A core set of 3268 gene promoters underwent chromatin remodeling and concomitant changes in gene expression in response to activation, and were enriched in multiple pathways controlling cell cycle regulation, metabolism, inflammatory response genes and cell survival. Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) was among those factors that gained the highest accessibility and expression, in addition to IL2-STAT5 dependent chromatin remodeling in the T-cell activation response. Using publicly available data we found the chromatin response was far more dynamic at 24-h compared with 72-h post-activation. In total 546 associations were reproduced at both time-points with similar strength of evidence and directionality of effect. At the pathways level, the IL2-STAT5, KRAS signalling and UV response pathways were replicable at both time-points, although differentially modulated from 24 to 72 h post-activation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number14101
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


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