Mitotic transcription and waves of gene reactivation during mitotic exit

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Science  14 Sep 2017:
DOI: 10.1126/science.aal4671

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Although the genome is generally thought to be transcriptionally silent during mitosis, technical limitations have prevented sensitive mapping of transcription during mitosis and mitotic exit. Thus, the means by which the interphase expression pattern is transduced to daughter cells have been unclear. We used 5-ethynyluridine to pulse-label transcripts during mitosis and mitotic exit and find that many genes exhibit transcription during mitosis, as confirmed by FITC-UTP labeling, RNA FISH, and RT-qPCR. The first round of transcription immediately following mitosis primarily activates genes involved in the growth and rebuilding of daughter cells, rather than cell type-specific functions. We propose that the cell’s transcription pattern is largely retained at a low level through mitosis, whereas the amplitude of transcription observed in interphase is re-established during mitotic exit.

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