genomic imprinting

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The pattern of gene expression or repression that is transmitted from parent to offspring so that function may depend upon whether it is a maternal or paternal copy. Silencing of imprinted genes, often in clusters (see DNA methylation), is brought about by imprinting control regions (ICRs) that are set differently during gametogenesis in male and female germ lines. Increasing numbers of imprinting effects are being identified, including several of importance in the pathology of diseases, e.g. altered paternal expression of genes within the 15q11–13 region giving rise to Prader–Willi syndrome and altered maternal expression of the UBE3A (ubiquitin protein ligase E3A) gene causing Angelman's syndrome. Since imprinting is an epigenetic phenomenon the effects are not deducible from the genomic sequence, but imprinting maps for the mouse have been produced.

http://www.har.mrc.ac.uk/research/genomic_imprinting/maps.html Imprinting map for the mouse genome.

Subjects: Medicine and Health.

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