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    Publication Date: 2011-09-03
    Description: RNA can act as a regulator of gene expression with roles in transposon silencing, antiviral defense, and cell fate determination. Here, we show that in Caenorhabditis elegans a maternal transcript of the sex-determining gene fem-1 is required to license expression of a wild-type fem-1 allele in the zygotic germ line. Females homozygous for fem-1 deletions produce heterozygous offspring exhibiting germline feminization, reduced fem-1 activity, and transcript accumulation. Injection of fem-1 RNA incapable of encoding a protein into the maternal germ line rescues this defect in the progeny. The defect in zygotic fem-1 expression is heritable, suggesting that the gene is subject to epigenetic silencing that is prevented by maternal fem-1 transcripts. This mechanism may contribute to protecting the identity and integrity of the germ line.〈br /〉〈span class="detail_caption"〉Notes: 〈/span〉Johnson, Cheryl L -- Spence, Andrew M -- Canadian Institutes of Health Research/Canada -- New York, N.Y. -- Science. 2011 Sep 2;333(6047):1311-4. doi: 10.1126/science.1208178.〈br /〉〈span class="detail_caption"〉Author address: 〈/span〉Department of Molecular Genetics, Collaborative Program in Developmental Biology, University of Toronto, 1 King's College Circle, Toronto, ON M5S 1A8, Canada.〈br /〉〈span class="detail_caption"〉Record origin:〈/span〉 〈a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21885785" target="_blank"〉PubMed〈/a〉
    Keywords: Alleles ; Animals ; Caenorhabditis elegans/cytology/*genetics/physiology ; Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins/*genetics/metabolism ; Cell Cycle Proteins/*genetics/metabolism ; Crosses, Genetic ; *Epigenesis, Genetic ; Female ; Gene Deletion ; *Gene Silencing ; Germ Cells/*metabolism ; Heterozygote ; Homozygote ; Male ; Phenotype ; RNA, Helminth/*genetics ; RNA, Messenger/genetics ; Sex Determination Processes/*genetics ; Spermatogenesis
    Print ISSN: 0036-8075
    Electronic ISSN: 1095-9203
    Topics: Biology , Chemistry and Pharmacology , Computer Science , Medicine , Natural Sciences in General , Physics
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