Aberrant patterns of X chromosome inactivation in bovine clones

Fei Xue, X. Cindy Tian, Fuliang Du, Chikara Kubota, Maneesh Taneja, Andras Dinnyes, Yunping Dai, Howard Levine, Lygia V. Pereira, Xiangzhong Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

248 Citations (Scopus)


In mammals, epigenetic marks on the X chromosomes are involved in dosage compensation. Specifically, they are required for X chromosome inactivation (XCI), the random transcriptional silencing of one of the two X chromosomes in female cells during late blastocyst development. During natural reproduction, both X chromosomes are active in the female zygote. In somatic-cell cloning, however, the cloned embryos receive one active (Xa) and one inactive (Xi) X chromosome from the donor cells. Patterns of XCI have been reported normal in cloned mice, but have yet to be investigated in other species. We examined allele-specific expression of the X-linked monoamine oxidase type A (MAOA) gene and the expression of nine additional X-linked genes in nine cloned XX calves. We found aberrant expression patterns in nine of ten X-linked genes and hypomethylation of Xist in organs of deceased clones. Analysis of MAOA expression in bovine placentae from natural reproduction revealed imprinted XCI with preferential inactivation of the paternal X chromosome. In contrast, we found random XCI in placentae of the deceased clones but completely skewed XCI in that of live clones. Thus, incomplete nuclear reprogramming may generate abnormal epigenetic marks on the X chromosomes of cloned cattle, affecting both random and imprinted XCI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)216-220
Number of pages5
JournalNature genetics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics

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    Xue, F., Tian, X. C., Du, F., Kubota, C., Taneja, M., Dinnyes, A., Dai, Y., Levine, H., Pereira, L. V., & Yang, X. (2002). Aberrant patterns of X chromosome inactivation in bovine clones. Nature genetics, 31(2), 216-220. https://doi.org/10.1038/ng900