The GATA transcription factor GtaC regulates early developmental gene expression dynamics in Dictyostelium

Nat Commun. 2015 Jul 6:6:7551. doi: 10.1038/ncomms8551.


In many systems, including the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum, development is often marked by dynamic morphological and transcriptional changes orchestrated by key transcription factors. However, efforts to examine sequential genome-wide changes of gene regulation in developmental processes have been fairly limited. Here we report the developmental regulatory dynamics of GtaC, a GATA-type zinc-finger transcription factor, through the analyses of serial ChIP- and RNA-sequencing data. GtaC is essential for developmental progression, decoding extracellular cAMP pulses during early development and may play a role in mediating cell-type differentiation at later stages. We find that GtaC exhibits temporally distinctive DNA-binding patterns concordant with each developmental stage. We identify direct GtaC targets and observe cotemporaneous GtaC-binding and developmental expression regulation. Our results suggest that GtaC regulates multiple physiological processes as Dictyostelium transitions from a group of unicellular amoebae to an integrated multicellular organism.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • DNA / metabolism
  • Dictyostelium / genetics
  • Dictyostelium / metabolism*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental / physiology*
  • Protein Binding
  • Protozoan Proteins / genetics
  • Protozoan Proteins / metabolism*
  • RNA / genetics
  • RNA / metabolism
  • RNA, Protozoan / genetics
  • RNA, Protozoan / metabolism
  • Transcriptome


  • Protozoan Proteins
  • RNA, Protozoan
  • RNA
  • DNA

Associated data

  • GEO/GSE63151