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TRIM28 down-regulation on methylation imprints in bovine preimplantation embryos

  • Xin Ma (a1), Sheng Zhang (a2), Meiling Zhang (a1), Yiran Zhu (a1), Panpan Ma (a1), Shubao Yang (a1), Liyan Su (a1), Ziyi Li (a2), Wenfa Lv (a1) and Weimin Luan (a1)...
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TRIM28/KAP1/TIF1β was identified as a universal transcriptional co-repressor and is critical for regulating post-fertilization methylation reprogramming in preimplantation embryos. In this study, three siRNAs (si647, si742, and si1153) were designed to target the TRIM28 mRNA sequence. After transfection of the mixture of the three siRNA (siMix) into bovine fibroblast cells, the most effective one for TRIM28 knockdown was selected. By injecting RNAi directed against TRIM28 mRNA, we found that TRIM28 knockdown in oocytes had the most effect on the H19 gene, in which differentially methylated region (DMR) methylation was almost completely absent at the 2-cell stage (1.4%), while control embryos showed 74% methylation. In addition, global H3K9me3 levels at the 2-cell stage were significantly higher in the in vitro fertilization (IVF) group than in the TRIM28 knockdown group (P<0.05). We further show that TRIM28 is highly expressed during oocyte maturation and reaches peak levels at the 2-cell stage. In contrast, at this stage, TRIM28 expression in somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) embryos decreased significantly (P<0.05), suggesting that Trim28 transcripts are lost during SCNT. TRIM28 is required for the maintenance of methylation imprints in bovine preimplantation embryos, and the loss of TRIM28 during SCNT may contribute to the unfaithful maintenance of imprints in cloned embryos.


Corresponding author

*Author for correspondence: Weimin Luan. College of Animal Science and Technology, Jilin Agricultural University, Changchun, Jilin, China. E-mail:


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These authors contributed equally to this work.



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A correction has been issued for this article: