Research Article

High-Resolution Analysis of Parent-of-Origin Allelic Expression in the Mouse Brain

Science  06 Aug 2010:
Vol. 329, Issue 5992, pp. 643-648
DOI: 10.1126/science.1190830

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Abstract

Genomic imprinting results in preferential expression of the paternal or maternal allele of certain genes. We have performed a genome-wide characterization of imprinting in the mouse embryonic and adult brain. This approach uncovered parent-of-origin allelic effects of more than 1300 loci. We identified parental bias in the expression of individual genes and of specific transcript isoforms, with differences between brain regions. Many imprinted genes are expressed in neural systems associated with feeding and motivated behaviors, and parental biases preferentially target genetic pathways governing metabolism and cell adhesion. We observed a preferential maternal contribution to gene expression in the developing brain and a major paternal contribution in the adult brain. Thus, parental expression bias emerges as a major mode of epigenetic regulation in the brain.

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