Reduced PRC2 function alters male germline epigenetic programming and paternal inheritance

Jessica Stringer, Samuel Forster, Zhipeng Qu, Lexie Ann Prokopuk, Moira Kathleen O'Bryan, David K. Gardner, Stefan White, David Louis Adelson, Patrick Stephen Western

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Defining the mechanisms that establish and regulate the transmission of epigenetic information from parent to offspring is critical for understanding disease heredity. Currently, the molecular pathways that regulate epigenetic information in the germline and its transmission to offspring are poorly understood.
Results: Here we provide evidence that Polycomb Repressive Complex 2 (PRC2) regulates paternal inheritance. Reduced PRC2 function in mice resulted in male sub-fertility and altered epigenetic and transcriptional control of retrotransposed elements in foetal male germ cells. Males with reduced PRC2 function produced offspring that over-expressed retrotransposed pseudogenes and had altered preimplantation embryo cleavage rates and cell cycle control.
Conclusion: This study reveals a novel role for the histone-modifying complex, PRC2, in paternal intergenerational transmission of epigenetic effects on offspring, with important implications for understanding disease inheritance.
Original languageEnglish
Article number104
Number of pages20
JournalBMC Biology
Publication statusPublished - 20 Sep 2018

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