DNMT3L is a regulator of X chromosome compaction and post-meiotic gene transcription

Natasha Zamudio, Hamish Scott, Katja Wolski, Jennifer Chi Lo, Charity Law, Dillon Leong, Sarah Kinkel, Suyinn Chong, Damien Jolley, Gordon Smyth, David de Kretser, Emma Whitelaw, Moira O'Bryan

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Abstract

Previous studies on the epigenetic regulator DNA methyltransferase 3-Like (DNMT3L), have demonstrated it is an essential regulator of paternal imprinting and early male meiosis. Dnmt3L is also a paternal effect gene, i.e., wild type offspring of heterozygous mutant sires display abnormal phenotypes suggesting the inheritance of aberrant epigenetic marks on the paternal chromosomes. In order to reveal the mechanisms underlying these paternal effects, we have assessed X chromosome meiotic compaction, XY chromosome aneuploidy rates and global transcription in meiotic and haploid germ cells from male mice heterozygous for Dnmt3L. XY bodies from Dnmt3L heterozygous males were significantly longer than those from wild types, and were associated with a three-fold increase in XY bearing sperm. Loss of a Dnmt3L allele resulted in deregulated expression of a large number of both X-linked and autosomal genes within meiotic cells, but more prominently in haploid germ cells. Data demonstrate that similar to embryonic stem cells, DNMT3L is involved in an auto-regulatory loop in germ cells wherein the loss of a Dnmt3L allele resulted in increased transcription from the remaining wild type allele. In contrast, however, within round spermatids, this auto-regulatory loop incorporated the alternative non-coding alternative transcripts. Consistent with the mRNA data, we have localized DNMT3L within spermatids and sperm and shown that the loss of a Dnmt3L allele results in a decreased DNMT3L content within sperm. These data demonstrate previously unrecognised roles for DNMT3L in late meiosis and in the transcriptional regulation of meiotic and post-meiotic germ cells. These data provide a potential mechanism for some cases of human Klinefelter s and Turner s syndromes.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere18276
Number of pages12
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume6
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Cite this

Zamudio, N., Scott, H., Wolski, K., Lo, J. C., Law, C., Leong, D., Kinkel, S., Chong, S., Jolley, D., Smyth, G., de Kretser, D., Whitelaw, E., & O'Bryan, M. (2011). DNMT3L is a regulator of X chromosome compaction and post-meiotic gene transcription. PLoS ONE, 6(3), [e18276]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0018276