Enhancers of transcription activate transcription via binding of sequence-specific transcription factors to their target sites in chromatin. In this report, we identify GATA1-bound distal sites genome-wide and find a global reorganization of the nucleosomes at these potential enhancers during differentiation of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) to erythrocytes. We show that the catalytic subunit BRG1 of BAF complexes localizes to these distal sites during differentiation and generates a longer nucleosome linker region surrounding the GATA1 sites by shifting the flanking nucleosomes away. Intriguingly, we find that the nucleosome shifting specifically facilitates binding of TAL1 but not GATA1 and is linked to subsequent transcriptional regulation of target genes.
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