Lost in translation? New findings suggest a critical role for cytosine methylation in tRNAs

While cytosine methylation in the DNA context will continue to be an important marker for epigenetic discoveries, current trends in the cytosine methylation game indicate diverse and critical roles of the modification in the RNA context. Much attention has been paid recently to findings in mRNA methylation, suggesting an important …

Mouse embryonic stem cells

How is DNA Methylation Maintained in ESCs and Differentiated Cells?

DNA methylation has been shown to be very important for development, differentiation, and aging.  But how is DNA methylation maintained?  When and how does de novo DNA methylation occur?  Are there specific DNA methyltransferases (Dnmts) involved in non-symmetric DNA methylation or DNA methylation outside of the CpG context?  There have …

5mC and 5hmC

Maternal instincts: Protection of 5mC?

DNA modification by 5-methylcytosine (5mC) was the only recognized DNA modification for many years in mammals and 5mC plays important roles in cell differentiation and development. Recently, a novel 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) DNA modification has been reported and the balance between 5mC and 5hmC in the genome is a critical step …