Experimental Analysis of Imprinted Mouse X-Chromosome Inactivation
X-chromosome inactivation is a dosage compensation mechanism that equalizes X-linked gene expression between male and female mammals through the transcriptional silencing of most genes on one of the two X-chromosomes in females. With a few key exceptions, once the X-chromosome is inactivated replicated copies of that X-chromosome are maintained as inactive in all descendant cells. X-inactivation is therefore a paradigm of epigenetic inheritance. Imprinted X-inactivation is a specialized form of X-inactivation that results in the silencing of the paternally derived X-chromosome. Due to its parent-of-origin-specific pattern of inactivation, imprinted X-inactivation is a model of mitotic as well as meiotic, i.e., transgenerational, epigenetic inheritance. All cells of the early mouse embryo undergo imprinted X-inactivation, a pattern that is subsequently maintained in extraembryonic cell types in vivo and in vitro. Here, we describe both high- and low-throughput approaches to interrogate imprinted X-inactivation in the mouse embryo as well in cultured extraembryonic stem cells.
Key wordsX-chromosome inactivation Allele-specific gene expression analyses Preimplantation mouse embryogenesis Trophoblast stem cells (TSCs) Extraembryonic endoderm (XEN) stem cells
This work was funded by an NIH training grant: Michigan Predoctoral Training in Genetics (T32GM007544) to M.C.; NIH National Research Service Award #5-T32-GM07544 from the National Institute of General Medicine Sciences to E.M.; an NIH Director’s New Innovator Award (DP2-OD-008646-01) to S.K.; a March of Dimes Basil O’Connor Starter Scholar Research Award (5-FY12-119); and the University of Michigan Endowment for Basic Sciences.
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