Research Topic

Monoallelic Expression in Development and Diseases

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In the diploid eukaryotic genome, it is generally accepted that the maternal and paternal allele of each gene is expressed equally. However, there are exceptions, where only one of the two alleles is active. Examples of monoallelic expressions, such as imprinting genes, olfactory receptors, immunoglobulins, ...

In the diploid eukaryotic genome, it is generally accepted that the maternal and paternal allele of each gene is expressed equally. However, there are exceptions, where only one of the two alleles is active. Examples of monoallelic expressions, such as imprinting genes, olfactory receptors, immunoglobulins, are strictly regulated to play important roles during development in a cell-type specific manner. With the advance of sequencing technologies, asymmetric regulation in the diploid genomes has been widely observed at the transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. However, our knowledge of the regulatory mechanisms involved and their functions in development and disease is still limited.

This Research Topic aims at exploring the mystery of imprinted and monoallelic gene expression from various perspectives. We are seeking submission from studies or reviews exploring different mechanistic aspects of monoallelic gene expression, such as:

1. Novel experimental and computational approaches to identify and quantify instances of imprinted or other examples of monoallelic gene expression.

2. Analysis of epigenetic mechanisms operating in the germline to reset and establish parental epigenotypes.

3. Molecular mechanisms that extend our understanding of how monoallelic regulation is achieved and maintained. Previous studies have demonstrated that inheritable monoallelic expression can be regulated through allelic epigenetic information on DNAs or histone proteins. Besides the regulation at the epigenetic and transcriptional level, we are also interested in allele-specific regulation at the post-transcriptional level through epigenetic information on RNAs, such as RNA modifications and editing.

4. Studies focusing on the functional contributions of monoallelic expression in development and disease to explain why the diploid genome needs such asymmetric regulation of the parental alleles.

In this Research Topic, we welcome Original Research Articles, Reviews, or Perspectives that significantly advance our understanding of monoallelic regulation in diploid genomes.


Keywords: allele-specific expression, imprinting, random monoallelic expression, exclusive allelic expression, asymmetric regulation


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