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Genomic Imprinting Controls Matrix Attachment Regions in the Igf2 Gene

American Society for Microbiology
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  • Transcriptional Regulation
  • Biology


Genomic imprinting at the Igf2/H19 locus originates from allele-specific DNA methylation, which modifies the affinity of some proteins for their target sequences. Here, we show that AT-rich DNA sequences located in the vicinity of previously characterized differentially methylated regions (DMRs) of the imprinted Igf2 gene are conserved between mouse and human. These sequences have all the characteristics of matrix attachment regions (MARs), which are known as versatile regulatory elements involved in chromatin structure and gene expression. Combining allele-specific nuclear matrix binding assays and real-time PCR quantification, we show that retention of two of these Igf2 MARs (MAR0 and MAR2) in the nuclear matrix fraction depends on the tissue and is specific to the paternal allele. Furthermore, on this allele, the Igf2 MAR2 is functionally linked to the neighboring DMR2 while, on the maternal allele, it is controlled by the imprinting-control region. Our work clearly demonstrates that genomic imprinting controls matrix attachment regions in the Igf2 gene.

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