Sir2p exists in two nucleosome-binding complexes with distinct deacetylase activities
The absolute requirement for the histone deacetylase activity of Sir2p in silencing coupled with the conservation of Sir2p-like proteins in larger eukaryotes suggests that this molecule plays an important role in gene regulation in all organisms. Here we report the purification and characterization of two Sir2p-containing protein complexes; one of which contains Sir4p and the other Net1p. The Sir4p-containing complex has an NAD-dependent histone deacetylase activity, while the Net1p-containing complex possesses deacetylase activity but only weak NAD-dependent histone deacetylase activity. Finally, we demonstrate that the Sir2p-containing complexes bind nucleosomes efficiently and partially restrict accessibility of the linker DNA to enzymatic probes.