Caister Academic Press

The Molecular Mechanisms of Mammalian X Inactivation

Marnie E. Blewitt and Linden J. Gearing
from: Epigenetics: A Reference Manual (Edited by: Jeffrey M. Craig and Nicholas C. Wong). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2011)


X chromosome inactivation is the method of dosage compensation that has evolved to equalise expression of X-linked genes between female (XX) and male (XY) mammals. In somatic cells only one X chromosome is active; the second X in female cells is silenced early during embryonic development, a process that involves the co-ordination of multiple levels of epigenetic regulation to ensure stable chromosome-wide silencing. In this chapter we shall focus on the molecular mechanisms involved in X chromosome inactivation, discuss how the epigenetic marks are believed to elicit stable transcriptional silencing, and why X inactivation represents an excellent model system for studying epigenetic regulation in mammals read more ...
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