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Genes Genet Syst. 2012;87(1):53-8.

Conservation of genomic imprinting at the NDN, MAGEL2 and MEST loci in pigs.

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School of Life Science and Technology, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, China.


Imprinted genes have important effects on the regulation of fetal growth, development, and postnatal behavior. However, the study of imprinted genes has been limited in mammalian species other than human and mouse. Therefore, the study of porcine imprinted genes is useful for defining the extent of conservation of genomic imprinting among different species. In this study, the imprinting status of porcine NDN, MAGEL2 and MEST genes was determined by direct sequencing of the cDNAs and detection of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) identified in individuals from reciprocal crosses between Meishan and Large White pigs for allele discrimination. The analysis was carried out in 13 different tissues (skeletal muscle, fat, pituitary gland, heart, lung, liver, kidney, spleen, stomach, small intestine, uterus, ovary and testis) from 12 two-month-old piglets. Imprinting analysis showed that NDN and MAGEL2 were paternally expressed in all tissues where the genes were expressed as in human and mouse. Interestingly, MEST showed tissue-specific imprinting, being paternally expressed in skeletal muscle, fat, pituitary gland, heart, kidney, lung, stomach and uterus, and maternally expressed in spleen and liver.

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