Indexed on: 01 Sep '16Published on: 01 Sep '16Published in: Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.)
Contour-clamped homogenous electric field (CHEF) gel electrophoresis, a variant of Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE), is a powerful technique for resolving large fragments of DNA (10 kb-9 Mb). CHEF has many applications including the physical mapping of chromosomes, artificial chromosomes, and sub-chromosomal DNA fragments, etc. Here, we describe the use of CHEF and two-dimensional gel electrophoresis to analyze rRNA gene methylation patterns within the two ~4 million base pair nucleolus organizer regions (NORs) of Arabidopsis thaliana. The method involves CHEF gel electrophoresis of agarose-embedded DNA following restriction endonuclease digestion to cut the NORs into large but resolvable segments, followed by digestion with methylation-sensitive restriction endonucleases and conventional (or CHEF) gel electrophoresis, in a second dimension. Resulting products are then detected by Southern blotting or PCR analyses capable of discriminating rRNA gene subtypes.