Daniël Melters

Daniël P. Melters, Ph.D.

  • Center for Cancer Research
  • National Cancer Institute


How are chromatin domains formed and how are they maintained? How can a chromatin domains exist in both a diffuse state and as a discrete locus while maintaining it's well-defined function? How do histone variants, in combination with nucleosome-binding proteins, orchestrate the functional aspects of the chromatin fiber? The centromere, defined by centromere-specific proteins such as the histone variant CENP-A, is an ideal model system, as its genomic organization is dramatically different between species. Budding yeast has point centromeres, humans have regional centromeres, whereas nematodes are holocentric. Nevertheless, the role of centromeric chromatin remains the same. Using biochemical and biphysical tools, Dr. Melters dissects how chromatin accessibility is modulated by histone variants and chromatin-binding factors.

Areas of Expertise

Chromatin Biology
Genome Evolution
Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)
High-speed AFM


Selected Publications

Single molecule analysis of CENP-A chromatin by high-speed atomic force microscopy

Melters DP, Neuman KC, Bentahar RS, Rakshit T, Dalal Y
eLife. e86709, 2023.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

A hyper-quiescent chromatin state formed during aging is reversed by regeneration

Yang Na, Occean JR, Melters DP, Shi C, Wang L, Stransky S, Doyle ME, Cui CY, Delannoy M, Fan J, Slama E, Egan JM, De S, Cunningham SC, de Cabo R, Sidoli S, Dalal Y, Sen P
Mol Cell. 83(10): 1659-1676.e11, 2023.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

Intrinsic elasticity of nucleosomes is encoded by histone variants and calibrated by their binding partners

Daniël P Melters , Mary Pitman , Tatini Rakshit , Emilios K Dimitriadis , Minh Bui , Garegin A Papoian , Yamini Dalall
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A .. 116(46): 24066-24074, 2019.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

Chromatin Dynamics in Vivo: A Game of Musical Chairs

Daniël P Melters , Jonathan Nye , Haiqing Zhao , Yamini Dalal
Genes (Basel). 6(3): 751-76, 2015.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

Comparative analysis of tandem repeats from hundreds of species reveals unique insights into centromere evolution

Melters DP, Bradnam KR, Young HA, Telis N, May MR, Ruby JG, Sebra R, Peluso P, Eid J, Rank D, Garcia JF, DeRisi JL, Smith T, Tobias C, Ross-Ibarra J, Korf I, Chan SW.
Genome Biol. 14: R10, 2013.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]