Sex Chromosome Dosage Compensation

Dosage compensation is required to balance gene expression from the X chromosome between males (which only have one X) and females (with two Xs). X chromosome inactivation (XCI) is one aspect of dosage compensation, and is arguably the most spectacular example of epigenetic silencing in mammalian genomes. In the somatic cells of female placental mammals, a characteristic signature of epigenetic modifications accumulates on, and transcriptionally silences, one of the two X chromosomes.

This project will examine the long non-coding RNAs the mediate epigenetic regulation of the X chromosome in interesting model species, resulting in a better understanding of how silencing of the X evolved in humans.


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