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Genes Dev. 2010 Oct 1;24(19):2107-14. doi: 10.1101/gad.1963010.

Cytidine deaminases: AIDing DNA demethylation?

Author information

1
Laboratory of Lymphocyte Biology, The Rockefeller University, New York, New York 10065, USA.

Abstract

The presence of 5-methylcytosine (5-mC) in DNA is a vital epigenetic mark in vertebrates. While the enzymes responsible for methylating DNA in vertebrates have been identified, the means by which this mark can be removed are still unclear. Recently, it has been shown that activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID) contributes to the demethylation of DNA in certain systems. This enzyme has been intensely studied in its role as a key driver of antibody diversification in B cells, but recent observations from early development in zebrafish and mice as well as heterokaryons point to a role beyond immunology. This review takes stock of the reports linking AID and related deaminases to DNA demethylation, and describes the many important questions left to be answered in this field.

PMID:
20889711
PMCID:
PMC2947763
DOI:
10.1101/gad.1963010
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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