Chromatin based control of germ cell and early embryonic development in mice
In mammals, fusion of two highly differentiated gametes gives rise to a totipotent zygote capable of developing into a whole organism. The switch in cell fate coincides with translation and degradation of maternally provided transcripts, initiation of global transcription and “epigenetic reprogramming” of germline chromatin states into an embryonic state. Changes in chromatin are dynamic and occur in part in a parent-of-origin specific manner. I will discuss our ongoing efforts to unravel the role of Polycomb group proteins in epigenetic inheritance between generations, and in modulating chromatin states and transcription in pre-and post-implantation embryos. I will also discuss our evolutionary and functional insights in histone biology during spermatogenesis.
Senior Group Leader, Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research, Basel
Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research (FMI)