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Curr Opin Genet Dev. 1997 Dec;7(6):814-21.

Remembrance of things past: maintaining gene expression patterns with altered chromatin.

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Department of Molecular Biology, Princeton University, New Jersey 08544, USA.


Eukaryotic organisms have evolved mechanisms to stably preserve the gene expression patterns that determine cell fate. Recent advances have been made in understanding the DNA sequences and protein factors required to propagate gene activation or silencing. These studies suggest that, after gene activity states are selected during development, maintenance protein complexes provide a molecular memory of those states by altering a local domain of chromatin structure.

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