Imprinted genes are epigenetically regulated so that only one allele is expressed in a parent-of-origin-dependent manner. Although they represent a small subset of the mammalian genome, imprinted genes are essential for normal development. The regulatory mechanisms underlying imprinting are complex and have been the subject of extensive investigation. DNA methylation is the best-established epigenetic mark that is critical for the allele-specific expression of imprinted genes. This mark must be correctly established in the germline, maintained throughout life, and erased and reestablished in the germline the next generation. These events coincide with the genome-wide epigenetic reprogramming that occurs during gametogenesis and early embryogenesis; therefore, the establishment and maintenance of DNA methylation must be tightly regulated. Studies on enzymes that participate in both de novo methylation and its maintenance (i.e., the DNMT family) have provided information on how methylation influences imprinting. However, many aspects of the regulation of DNA methylation are unknown, including how methylation complexes are targeted and the molecular mechanisms underlying DNA demethylation. In this review we focus on the epigenetic changes that occur in the germline and early embryo, with an emphasis on imprinting. We summarize recent findings on factors influencing DNA methylation establishment, maintenance, and erasure that have further elucidated the mechanisms of imprinting, while highlighting topics that require further investigation.
Mammalian Genome – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 16, 2009
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera