The body's tendency to silence the expression of one parental allele in favor of the other -- a practice known as genomic imprinting -- is much more widespread than scientists have believed, according to a new genome-wide study in mice, published online this week in linkurl:Science.;http://www.sciencemag.org/ The study found that the number of genes in mouse brains with a bias toward either the maternal or paternal allele is thirteen times higher than previously thought.
"Overall, the results tell us that imprinting is a major mode of epigenetic regulation," said study author linkurl:Catherine Dulac;http://golgi.harvard.edu/faculty/faculty_profile.php?f=catherine-dulac at Harvard University. In addition, she and her colleagues argue that understanding imprinting in the brain may shed light on sex-specific brain diseases. Genomic imprinting is a type of epigenetic regulation, in which chemical reactions cause changes in gene expression without altering the underlying DNA. Over the last ten years, many...
The Scientist.Interleukin 18,C. Gregg et al. "High Resolution Analysis of Parent-of-Origin Allelic Expression in the Mouse Brain," Science, published online July 8, 2010, doi:10.1126/science.1190830.C. Gregg et al. "Sex-Specific Parent-of-Origin Allelic Expression in the Mouse Brain," Science, published online July 8, 2010, doi:10.1126/science.1190831.
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