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Chromatin landscape associated with sexual differentiation in a UV sex determination system

Abstract : Abstract In many eukaryotes, such as dioicous mosses and many algae, sex is determined by UV sex chromosomes and is expressed during the haploid phase of the life cycle. In these species, the male and female developmental programs are initiated by the presence of the U- or V-specific regions of the sex chromosomes but, as in XY and ZW systems, sexual differentiation is largely driven by autosomal sex-biased gene expression. The mechanisms underlying the regulation of sex-biased expression of genes during sexual differentiation remain elusive. Here, we investigated the extent and nature of epigenomic changes associated with UV sexual differentiation in the brown alga Ectocarpus, a model UV system. Six histone modifications were quantified in near-isogenic lines, leading to the identification of 16 chromatin signatures across the genome. Chromatin signatures correlated with levels of gene expression and histone PTMs changes in males versus females occurred preferentially at genes involved in sex-specific pathways. Despite the absence of chromosome scale dosage compensation and the fact that UV sex chromosomes recombine across most of their length, the chromatin landscape of these chromosomes was remarkably different to that of autosomes. Hotspots of evolutionary young genes in the pseudoautosomal regions appear to drive the exceptional chromatin features of UV sex chromosomes.
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Contributor : J. Mark Cock Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Monday, March 14, 2022 - 6:45:39 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, September 1, 2022 - 8:44:06 AM



Josselin Gueno, Michael Borg, Simon Bourdareau, Guillaume Cossard, Olivier Godfroy, et al.. Chromatin landscape associated with sexual differentiation in a UV sex determination system. Nucleic Acids Research, Oxford University Press, 2022, ⟨10.1093/nar/gkac145⟩. ⟨hal-03608518⟩



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