Condensins are multisubunit protein complexes that play a fundamental role in the structural and functional organization of chromosomes.
Condensin mediates condensation of chromosomal DNA that is essential for chromosome segregation during cell division. Recent studies revealed that condensin contributes also to a wide variety of chromosome functions, such as gene regulation, genome stability, and DNA repair. Alteration of its function may cause cell lethality or induce human pathology.
The way in which condensin structures chromosomes remains largely unknown. To elucidate this, it is necessary to understand how condensin is recruited onto DNA. Condensin localizes predominantly at highly transcribed genes. This preferential binding suggests interplay between transcription and condensin. To understand this relationship we have decided to decipher the mechanism leading to condensin recruitment at rDNA a gene highly transcribed by the machinery, RNA polymerase I.