PiRNA clusters and open chromatin structure

Soichiro Yamanaka, Mikiko C. Siomi, Haruhiko Siomi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Transposable elements (TEs) are major structural components of eukaryotic genomes; however, mobilization of TEs generally has negative effects on the host genome. To counteract this threat, host cells have evolved genetic and epigenetic mechanisms that keep TEs silenced. One such mechanism involves the Piwi-piRNA complex, which represses TEs in animal gonads either by cleaving TE transcripts in the cytoplasm or by directing specific chromatin modifications at TE loci in the nucleus. Most Piwi-interacting RNAs (piRNAs) are derived from genomic piRNA clusters. There has been remarkable progress in our understanding of the mechanisms underlying piRNA biogenesis. However, little is known about how a specific locus in the genome is converted into a piRNA-producing site. In this review, we will discuss a possible link between chromatin boundaries and piRNA cluster formation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number22
JournalMobile DNA
Volume5
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Aug 1

Keywords

  • Chromatin boundary
  • Piwi
  • Transposable elements
  • piRNA
  • piRNA cluster

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'PiRNA clusters and open chromatin structure'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this