Area II:
Genomic Imprinting

Imprinted genes are preferentially or exclusively expressed from only one of the parental alleles. The silencing of one allele involves epigenetic mechanisms of gene regulation such as DNA methylation and chromatin (histone) modifications. Using the mouse as a model system we try to identify and characterise genetic and epigenetic elements that control the establishment and maintenance of imprinting marks. Our work focusses on evolutionary aspects of imprinting development in mammals and the mechanistic understanding of regulation in distinct imprinting clusters: the Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS) region on distal chromosome 7 and the Dlk1-Gtl2 region on distal chromosome 12 in mouse. Here we analyse the function of certain DNA elements and non-coding RNAs in the vicinity of imprinting centers. This project was funded by the DFG SPP1129.