The disassembly of promoter nucleosomes appears to be a general property of highly transcribed eukaryotic genes. We have previously shown that the disassembly of chromatin from the promoters of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae PHO5 and PHO8 genes, mediated by the histone chaperone anti-silencing function 1 (Asf1), is essential for transcriptional activation upon phosphate depletion. This mechanism of transcriptional regulation is shared with the ADY2 and ADH2 genes upon glucose removal. Promoter chromatin disassembly by Asf1 is required for recruitment of TBP and RNA polymerase II, but not the Pho4 and Pho2 activators. Furthermore, accumulation of SWI/SNF and SAGA at the PHO5 promoter requires promoter chromatin disassembly. By contrast, the requirement for SWI/SNF and SAGA to facilitate Pho4 activator recruitment to the nucleosome-buried binding site in the PHO5 promoter occurs prior to chromatin disassembly and is distinct from the stable recruitment of SWI/SNF and SAGA that occurs after chromatin disassembly.