Paramutation

Discussion of all aspects of biological molecules, biochemical processes and laboratory procedures in the field.

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zami'87.
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Paramutation

Post by zami'87. » Thu Aug 20, 2009 6:11 pm

Hey..does anyone know what's molecular basis of paramutation?Does it also involves methylation or..It was discovered in corn but if anyone knows some examples in mammals I would be thankful...
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Post by koan » Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:10 pm

From what I understand, the molecular basis of paramutation is still being investigated. We know that it may share a mechanism of action with other epigenetic changes (gene silencing, genomic imprinting, and transvection, etc). In 2006, Alleman et al proposed that "paramutation is RNA-directed. Stability of the chromatin states associated with paramutation and transposon silencing requires the mop1 gene, which encodes an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase." This polymerase is required to maintain a threshold level of the repeat RNA, which causes the paramutation. Exactly how the RNA does this is not understood, but like other epigenetic changes, it involves a covalent modification of the DNA and/or the DNA-bound histone proteins without changing the DNA sequence of the gene itself.

Since its initial discovery and study in maize in the 1950s, paramutation has been observed in other organisms, including tomatoes, peas, and mice.

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Post by MrMistery » Thu Aug 20, 2009 9:38 pm

koan, when you copy-paste something it is good academic practice to cite the source, even if it is wikipedia.
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Post by kolean » Fri Aug 21, 2009 3:22 am

It is going to be non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) that will be the epigenetic phenomenon to observe in most instances. Here is a great review article to read:
http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articl ... d=19390609

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Re: Paramutation

Post by zami'87. » Sun Aug 23, 2009 3:21 am

hey thanx for replies..I'll risk to sound stupid..but if RNA is responsible for paramutation(It sounds very possible,agree as it can have enzymatic activity) than mutations in that RNA could make exceptions from paramutation rule. So two genes are involved? This reminds me on prions,as prion protein originates from normal protein but it's conformation changed(often higher percent of beta sheets..).
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Post by kolean » Fri Aug 28, 2009 12:04 pm

A little more info, if you didn't already see this: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/5011826.stm

Yes, everything in a biological organism is sensitive to change. Even one exchange of nucleotide in the DNA can cause the organism to be in a disease state/not optimal. The flip side is also possible, where one change could bring on a more optimal state. Such is the life of evolution.

I also would like to bring this to your attention:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epigenetics

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