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Chapter 2 - Histone modifications in germline development and maintenance

Valerie J Robert (2023)

In: Perinatal and Developmental Epigenetics, ed. by Garima Singh, vol. 32, pp. 47-69, Academic Press. Translational Epigenetics. (ISBN: 978-0-12-821785-6).

Gametes are highly differentiated cells capable of transmitting genetic information over generations and producing, following fertilization, zygotes able to give rise to any kind of cell type. Epigenetic regulation, defined here as any mechanisms that give rise to alternative transcriptional states without affecting the primary DNA sequence, establishes the dynamic chromatin landscape required for the differentiation of functional germ cells. Posttranslational modifications of histones are key players in epigenetic regulation. In this chapter, we describe our current knowledge on the distribution of posttranscriptional histone modification in embryonic and adult germ cells of mammals and the model system Caenorhabditis elegans. Specific examples of how histone modifications cooperate to control germ cell functions and transcriptional programs are also discussed.

Germline, Posttranslational histone modifications, Totipotency, Immortality, Epigenetic regulation

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