Epigenetics & chromatin

PRC2 is required for extensive reorganization of H3K27me3 during epigenetic reprogramming in mouse fetal germ cells.

PMID 28239420


Defining how epigenetic information is established in the germline during fetal development is key to understanding how epigenetic information is inherited and impacts on evolution and human health and disease. Here, we show that Polycomb Repressive Complex 2 is transiently localized in the nucleus of mouse fetal germ cells, while DNA methylation is removed from the germline. This coincides with significant enrichment of trimethylated lysine 27 on histone 3 near the nuclear lamina that is dependent on activity of the essential PRC2 catalytic proteins, Enhancer of Zeste 1 and/or 2. Combined, these data reveal a role for Polycomb Repressive Complex 2 and trimethylated lysine 27 on histone 3 during germline epigenetic programming that we speculate is required to repress target sequences while DNA methylation is removed.