Pluto Bioinformatics

GSE92894: The efficiency of Xist-mediated silencing of X-linked and autosomal genes is determined by the genomic environment

Bulk RNA sequencing

Xist is indispensable for X chromosome inactivation (XCI) in female mammalian cells. However, how Xist RNA directs chromosome-wide transcriptional inactivation of the X chromosome is largely unknown. Here, to study chromosome inactivation by Xist, we generated a system where ectopic Xist expression can be induced from several genomic contexts in aneuploid mouse ES cells. We found that ectopic Xist expression from any location on the X chromosome faithfully recapitulated endogenous XCI, showing the potency of Xist to initiate XCI. Genes that escape XCI remain consistently transcriptionally active upon ectopic XCI, regardless of their position relative to Xist transgenes, and the enrichment of CTCF at their promoters is implicated in directing XCI escape. Xist expression from autosomes facilitates their transcriptional silencing to different degrees, and gene density in proximity of the Xist transcription locus plays a central role in determining the efficiency of gene inactivation. We also show that the enrichment of LINE elements together with a specific chromatin environment facilitates Xist-mediated silencing of both X-linked and autosomal genes. These findings provide new insights into the epigenetic mechanisms that mediate XCI and identify genomic features that promote Xist-mediated chromosome-wide gene inactivation SOURCE: Nicolas Servant ( - Institut Curie

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