In Image 3, nearby regions on a chain of DNA are indicated using similar colors. The fractal globule has a hierarchical organization; regions nearby along the chain are also nearby in 3-D.
Image 4: A contiguous stretch of DNA chain inside a fractal globule packs into a compact, unknotted structure, making it easy to pack and unpack.
A team of researchers from Harvard University, the Broad Institute of Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the University of Massachusetts Medical School, and MIT deciphered the 3-D structure of the human genome, paving the way for new insights into genomic function and expanding our understanding of how cellular DNA folds at scales that dwarf the double helix.
The research was supported in part by the National Science Foundation. To learn more, see the story in the online Harvard Gazette the A look inside Scientists have deciphered 3-D structure of the human genome. (Date of Image: 2009)
Credit: Leonld A. Mirny and Maxim Imakaev