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REVIEW: Nuclear Matrix and Structural and Functional Compartmentalization of the Eucaryotic Cell Nucleus

S. V. Razin1,2,3*, V. V. Borunova3, O. V. Iarovaia1,2, and Y. S. Vassetzky2,4

1Institute of Gene Biology, Russian Academy of Sciences, ul. Vavilova 34/5, 119334 Moscow, Russia; fax: +7 (499) 135-9787; E-mail: sergey.v.razin@usa.net

2LIA 1066 French-Russian Joint Cancer Research Laboratory, 94805 Villejuif, France – ul. Vavilova 34/5, 119334 Moscow, Russia

3Faculty of Biology, Lomonosov Moscow State University, 119991 Moscow, Russia; fax: +7 (495) 939-2690; E-mail: vborunova@mail.ru

4UMR8126, Universite Paris-Sud, CNRS, Institut de Cancerologie Gustave Roussy, Villejuif, France; fax: 33-1-42-11-54-94

* To whom correspondence should be addressed.

Received March 19, 2014; Revision received April 4, 2014
Becoming popular at the end of the 20th century, the concept of the nuclear matrix implies the existence of a nuclear skeleton that organizes functional elements in the cell nucleus. This review presents a critical analysis of the results obtained in the study of nuclear matrix in the light of current views on the organization of the cell nucleus. Numerous studies of nuclear matrix have failed to provide evidence of the existence of such a structure. Moreover, the existence of a filamentous structure that supports the nuclear compartmentalization appears to be unnecessary, since this function is performed by the folded genome itself.
KEY WORDS: nuclear matrix, chromatin, functional compartmentalization of cell nucleus, architecture of interphase chromosomes, interchromatin domain, DNA loops

DOI: 10.1134/S0006297914070037