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      Eukaryotic DNA methylation

      Human Genetics

      Springer Nature

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          Most cited references 197

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          Hypomethylation distinguishes genes of some human cancers from their normal counterparts.

          It has been suggested that cancer represents an alteration in DNA, heritable by progeny cells, that leads to abnormally regulated expression of normal cellular genes; DNA alterations such as mutations, rearrangements and changes in methylation have been proposed to have such a role. Because of increasing evidence that DNA methylation is important in gene expression (for review see refs 7, 9-11), several investigators have studied DNA methylation in animal tumours, transformed cells and leukaemia cells in culture. The results of these studies have varied; depending on the techniques and systems used, an increase, decrease, or no change in the degree of methylation has been reported. To our knowledge, however, primary human tumour tissues have not been used in such studies. We have now examined DNA methylation in human cancer with three considerations in mind: (1) the methylation pattern of specific genes, rather than total levels of methylation, was determined; (2) human cancers and adjacent analogous normal tissues, unconditioned by culture media, were analysed; and (3) the cancers were taken from patients who had received neither radiation nor chemotherapy. In four of five patients studied, representing two histological types of cancer, substantial hypomethylation was found in genes of cancer cells compared with their normal counterparts. This hypomethylation was progressive in a metastasis from one of the patients.
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            DNA methylation and the frequency of CpG in animal DNA.

             Gregory Bird (1980)
            An analysis of nearest neighbour dinucleotide frequencies and the level of DNA methylation in animals strongly supports the suggestion that 5-methylcytosine (5mC) tends to mutate abnormally frequently to T. This tendency is the likely cause of the CpG deficiency in heavily methylated genomes.
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              Molecular basis of base substitution hotspots in Escherichia coli.

              In the lacI gene of Escherichia coli spontaneous base substituion hotspots occur at 5-methylcytosine residues. The hotspots disappear when the respective cytosines are not methylated. We suggest that the hotspots may result from the spontaneous deamination of 5-methylcytosine to thymine, which is not excised by the enzyme DNA-uracil glycosidase.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Human Genetics
                Hum Genet
                Springer Nature
                0340-6717
                1432-1203
                October 1983
                October 1983
                : 64
                : 4
                : 315-333
                Article
                10.1007/BF00292363
                © 1983
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