Journal Article

Evidence for translational regulation of the imprinted <i>Snurf–Snrpn</i> locus in mice

Ting-Fen Tsai, Ken-Shiung Chen, John S. Weber, Monica J. Justice and Arthur L. Beaudet

in Human Molecular Genetics

Volume 11, issue 14, pages 1659-1668
Published in print July 2002 | ISSN: 0964-6906
Published online July 2002 | e-ISSN: 1460-2083 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/hmg/11.14.1659
Evidence for translational regulation of the imprinted Snurf–Snrpn locus in mice

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In studies of genomic imprinting in the Prader–Willi/Angelman domain, an agouti coat color cassette was inserted into the downstream open reading frame (ORF) of the imprinted bicistronic Snurf–Snrpn locus in the mouse. The fusion gene was maternally silenced, as is Snurf–Snrpn, and produced a tan abdomen only when inherited paternally in otherwise-black mice. A screen for dominant epigenetic or genetic events was performed with ENU mutagenesis, using a strategy whereby variation in abdominal color was scored at weaning. One mouse with maternal origin of the fusion gene had a tan abdomen and had an imprinting defect resulting in loss of both maternal methylation and silencing of the fusion gene. One mouse with paternal origin of the fusion gene was completely yellow and was found to have an ATG-to-AAG mutation in the initiation codon of the upstream ORF encoding SNURF. Northern blotting, immunoblotting, and transfection studies indicated that the ATG-to-AAG mutation causes a 15-fold or more increase in translation of the downstream ORF in two fusion constructs, and it is likely that similar translational control affects the normal Snurf–Snrpn transcript as well.

Journal Article.  6647 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Genetics and Genomics

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