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Polycomb proteins maintain cell identity by repressing the expression of developmental regulators specific for other cell types. Polycomb repressive complex-2 (PRC2) catalyzes trimethylation of histone H3 lysine-27 (H3K27me3). Although repressed, PRC2 targets are generally associated with the transcriptional initiation marker H3K4me3, but the significance(More)
CHD7 is one of nine members of the chromodomain helicase DNA-binding domain family of ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling enzymes found in mammalian cells. De novo mutation of CHD7 is a major cause of CHARGE syndrome, a genetic condition characterized by multiple congenital anomalies. To gain insights to the function of CHD7, we used the technique of(More)
Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) are remnants of ancient retroviral infections of the host germline transmitted vertically from generation to generation. It is hypothesized that some ERVs are used by the host as restriction factors to block the infection of pathogenic retroviruses. Indeed, some ERVs efficiently interfere with the replication of related(More)
Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) deletions are a primary cause of mitochondrial disease and are believed to contribute to the aging process and to various neurodegenerative diseases. Despite strong observational and experimental evidence, the molecular basis of the deletion process remains obscure. In this study, we test the hypothesis that the primary cause of(More)
BACKGROUND The deleterious effect of a mutation can be reverted by a second-site interacting residue. This is an epistatic compensatory process explaining why mutations that are deleterious in some species are tolerated in phylogenetically related lineages, rendering evident that those mutations are, by all means, only deleterious in the species-specific(More)
Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) deletions cause disease and accumulate during aging, yet our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying their formation remains rudimentary. Guanine-quadruplex (GQ) DNA structures are associated with nuclear DNA instability in cancer; recent evidence indicates they can also form in mitochondrial nucleic acids, suggesting(More)
The pinewood nematode, Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, is one of the greatest threats to coniferous forests worldwide, causing severe ecological damage and economic loss. The biology of B. xylophilus is similar to that of its closest relative, B. mucronatus, as both species share food resources and insect vectors, and have very similar morphological(More)
The quest for a universal and efficient method of identifying species has been a longstanding challenge in biology. Here, we show that accurate identification of species in all domains of life can be accomplished by multiplex analysis of variable-length sequences containing multiple insertion/deletion variants. The new method, called SPInDel, is able to(More)
Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) rearrangements are key events in the development of many diseases. Investigations of mtDNA regions affected by rearrangements (i.e. breakpoints) can lead to important discoveries about rearrangement mechanisms and can offer important clues about the causes of mitochondrial diseases. Here, we present the mitochondrial DNA(More)
BACKGROUND During early mouse development, two extra-embryonic lineages form alongside the future embryo: the trophectoderm (TE) and the primitive endoderm (PrE). Epigenetic changes known to take place during these early stages include changes in DNA methylation and modified histones, as well as dynamic changes in gene expression. RESULTS In order to(More)