Purification and characterization of CAF-I, a human cell factor required for chromatin assembly during DNA replication in vitro

Cell. 1989 Jul 14;58(1):15-25. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(89)90398-x.


The purification and characterization of a replication-dependent chromatin assembly factor (CAF-I) from the nuclei of human cells is described. CAF-I is a multisubunit protein that, when added to a crude cytosol replication extract, promotes chromatin assembly on replicating SV40 DNA. Chromatin assembly by CAF-I requires and is coupled with DNA replication. The minichromosomes assembled de novo by CAF-I consist of correctly spaced nucleosomes containing the four core histones H2A, H2B, H3, and H4, which are supplied in a soluble form by the cytosol replication extract. Thus, by several criteria, the CAF-I-dependent chromatin assembly reaction described herein reflects the process of chromatin formation during DNA replication in vivo.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Biological Assay
  • Cell Nucleus / analysis*
  • Chromatin / ultrastructure*
  • DNA / metabolism
  • DNA Replication*
  • Histones / metabolism
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Macromolecular Substances
  • Molecular Weight
  • Morphogenesis
  • Nuclear Proteins / isolation & purification*
  • Simian virus 40


  • Chromatin
  • Histones
  • Macromolecular Substances
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • DNA