Sasakura Y, Suzuki MM, Hozumi A, Inaba K, Satoh N.
Maternal factor-mediated epigenetic gene silencing in the ascidian Ciona intestinalis.
Mol. Genet. Genomics
Epigenetic regulation of genes plays a critical role in achieving proper gene expression during development, and it has been reported that epigenetic modifications are associated with transposon silencing in many organisms. Here, we report a type of epigenetic gene silencing, maternal gfp/gene silencing (MGS), in the basal chordate Ciona intestinalis. A transgenic line of Ciona, Tg[MiTFr3dTPOG]45 (abbreviated as Tg45), which was created with the Minos transposon, has a tandemly arrayed insertion of gfp in the promoter region of Ci-CesA. Progeny of Tg45 showed a reduced level of GFP expression when eggs of Tg45 were fertilized with sperm of other gfp transgenic lines. Although the genotype is the same, animals developed from Tg45 sperm and the eggs of other transgenic lines did not exhibit this phenomenon, suggesting the involvement of a maternal cytoplasmic factor that influences GFP expression. The silencing starts during oogenesis and continues after fertilization without any tissue specificity. We found that post-transcriptional degradation of the gfp mRNA is involved in MGS.
Animals, Genetically Modified / genetics
Animals, Genetically Modified / metabolism
Ciona intestinalis / genetics*
Ciona intestinalis / physiology
Green Fluorescent Proteins / genetics
Oogenesis / genetics*
GENETICS & HEREDITY
BIOCHEMISTRY & MOLECULAR BIOLOGY
|C.intestinalis / (O.japonicus)