Encyclopedia of Animal Cognition and Behavior

Living Edition
| Editors: Jennifer Vonk, Todd Shackelford

Genomic Imprinting

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-47829-6_23-1



Genomic imprinting is an epigenetic phenomenon which results in the monoallelic expression of a gene depending on the parental origin. Genomic imprints may be covalent (DNA methylation) or noncovalent (DNA-protein and DNA-RNA interactions, genomic localization in nuclear space) and the process of imprinting encompasses the specialized nuclear enzymatic machinery which maintains parental epigenetic marks throughout the life.

How Imprinting Works?

All of us inherit two copies of a gene-one copy from mother and another one from father. Normally, both copies are active, whereas in some situations only one of them is turned on. Of these, some genes are active only when they are inherited from father, while others will be activated when inherited from mother. So which copy will remain active depends on their parental origin. These genes are called “imprinted genes.” Genomic imprinting is reversible: a...


Genomic Imprinting Gene Imprinting Imprinting Control Region (ICRs) Uniparental Disomy (UPD) Differential Allelic Expression 
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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Cytogenetics Laboratory, Department of Zoology, Institute of ScienceBanaras Hindu UniversityVaranasiIndia

Section editors and affiliations

  • Akash Gautam
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Neural and Cognitive Sciences, School of Medical SciencesUniversity of HyderabadHyderabadIndia