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Epigenetic control of cardiogenesis
Date:1/29/2013

Fendrr, which is specifically formed in the progenitor cells of the heart and ventral body wall. After knocking down Fendrr in a mouse, the heart and ventral body wall were malformed, which was lethal to the embryos. The malformations first arose, however, several days after Fendrr had already been knocked down in the progenitor cells. In the case of transcription factors, the malformations appear, in contrast, after their inactivation for cells in which the gene is normally active.

This delay between the expression of the Fendrr-RNA and the appearance of the malformation can be explained by the specific effect of this new class of regulators. They influence the epigenetic control of target genes, including important transcription factors, namely by binding to histone-modifying protein complexes. Thus, they influence the fate of the descendants of cells in which they themselves were only briefly active.

The scientists now hope to locate further lncRNAs that control cardiogenesis and additional processes of embryonic development in mammals, and shed light on the mechanism of how they operate. Fendrr is probably only one of many lncRNAs that participate in epigenetic control of regulators for tissue- and organogenesis.


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Contact: Bernhard G. Herrmann
herrmann@molgen.mpg.de
49-308-413-1409
Max-Planck-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert  

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Epigenetic control of cardiogenesis
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