chromatin Archives - Episona
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Methylation analysis of histone H4K12ac-associated promoters in sperm of healthy donors and subfertile patients
Mar 2015 -|Clinical Epigenetics
Markus Vieweg, Katerina Dvorakova-Hortova, Barbora Dudkova, Przemyslaw Waliszewski, Marie Otte, Berthold Oels, Amir Hajimohammad, Heiko Turley, Martin Schorsch, Hans-Christian Schuppe, Wolfgang Weidner, Klaus Steger, Agnieszka Paradowska-Dogan
Histone to protamine exchange and the hyperacetylation of the remaining histones are hallmarks of spermiogenesis. Acetylation of histone H4 at lysine 12 (H4K12ac) was observed prior to full decondensation of sperm chromatin after fertilization suggesting an important role for the regulation of gene expression in early embryogenesis. Similarly, DNA methylation may contribute to gene silencing of several developmentally important genes. <!--more-->Following the identification of H4K12ac-binding promoters in sperm of fertile and subfertile patients, we aimed to investigate whether the depletion of histone-binding is associated with aberrant DNA methylation in sperm of subfertile men. Furthermore, we monitored the transmission of H4K12ac, 5-methylcytosine (5mC) and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) from the paternal chromatin to the embryo applying mouse in vitro fertilization and immunofluorescence. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) with anti-H4K12ac antibody was performed with chromatin isolated from spermatozoa of subfertile patients with impaired sperm chromatin condensation assessed by aniline blue staining. Fertile donors were used as control. DNA methylation analysis of selected H4K12ac-interacting promoters in spermatozoa was performed by pyrosequencing. Depletion of binding sites for H4K12ac was observed within the following developmentally important promoters: AFF4, EP300, LRP5, RUVBL1, USP9X, NCOA6, NSD1, and POU2F1. We found 5% to 10% hypomethylation within CpG islands of selected promoters in the sperm of fertile donors, and it was not significantly altered in the subfertile group. Our results demonstrate that the H4K12ac depletion in selected developmentally important promoters of subfertile patients was not accompanied by a change of DNA methylation. Using a murine model, immunofluorescence revealed that H4K12ac co-localize with 5mC in the sperm nucleus. During fertilization, when the pronuclei are formed, the paternal pronucleus exhibits a strong acetylation signal on H4K12, while in the maternal pronucleus, there is a permanent increase of H4K12ac until pronuclei fusion. Simultaneously, there is an increase of the 5hmC signal and a decrease of the 5mC signal. We suggest that aberrant histone acetylation within developmentally important gene promoters in subfertile men, but not DNA methylation, may reflect insufficient sperm chromatin compaction affecting the transfer of epigenetic marks to the oocyte.
Disruption of histone methylation in developing sperm impairs offspring health transgenerationally
Nov 2015 - Science
Keith Siklenka, Serap Erkek, Maren Godmann, Romain Lambrot, Serge McGraw, Christine Lafleur, Tamara Cohen, Jianguo Xia, Matthew Suderman, Michael Hallett, Jacquetta Trasler, Antoine H. F. M. Peters, Sarah Kimmins
A father's lifetime experiences can be transmitted to his offspring to affect health and development. However, the mechanisms underlying paternal epigenetic transmission are unclear. Unlike in somatic cells, there are few nucleosomes in sperm, and their function in epigenetic inheritance is unknown. <!--more-->We generated transgenic mice in which overexpression of the histone H3 lysine 4 (H3K4) demethylase KDM1A (also known as LSD1) during spermatogenesis reduced H3K4 dimethylation in sperm. KDM1A overexpression in one generation severely impaired development and survivability of offspring. These defects persisted transgenerationally in the absence of KDM1A germline expression and were associated with altered RNA profiles in sperm and offspring. We show that epigenetic inheritance of aberrant development can be initiated by histone demethylase activity in developing sperm, without changes to DNA methylation at CpG-rich regions.
Aberrant DNA methylation patterns of spermatozoa in men with unexplained infertility
May 2015 - Hum Reprod
Rocío G. Urdinguio, Gustavo F. Bayón, Marija Dmitrijeva, Estela G. Toraño, Cristina Bravo, Mario F. Fraga, Lluís Bassas, Sara Larriba, Agustín F. Fernández
Aberrant DNA methylation of sperm has been associated with human male infertility in patients demonstrating either deficiencies in the process of spermatogenesis or low semen quality. This study compares 46 sperm samples obtained from 17 normospermic fertile men and 29 normospermic infertile patients. Illumina Infinium HD Human Methylation 450K arrays were used to identify genomic regions showing differences in sperm DNA methylation patterns between five fertile and seven infertile individuals. <!--more-->Additionally, global DNA methylation of sperm was measured using the Methylamp Global DNA Methylation Quantification Ultra kit (Epigentek) in 14 samples, and DNA methylation at several repetitive sequences (LINE-1, Alu Yb8, NBL2, D4Z4) measured by bisulfite pyrosequencing in 44 sperm samples. A sperm-specific DNA methylation pattern was obtained by comparing the sperm methylomes with the DNA methylomes of differentiated somatic cells using data obtained from methylation arrays (Illumina 450 K) of blood, neural and glial cells deposited in public databases. In this study we conduct, for the first time, a genome-wide study to identify alterations of sperm DNA methylation in individuals with unexplained infertility that may account for the differences in their biological fertility compared with fertile individuals. We have identified 2752 CpGs showing aberrant DNA methylation patterns, and more importantly, these differentially methylated CpGs were significantly associated with CpG sites which are specifically methylated in sperm when compared with somatic cells. We also found statistically significant (P < 0.001) associations between DNA hypomethylation and regions corresponding to those which, in somatic cells, are enriched in the repressive histone mark H3K9me3, and between DNA hypermethylation and regions enriched in H3K4me1 and CTCF, suggesting that the relationship between chromatin context and aberrant DNA methylation of sperm in infertile men could be locus-dependent. Finally, we also show that DNA methylation patterns, not only at specific loci but also at several repetitive sequences (LINE-1, Alu Yb8, NBL2, D4Z4), were lower in sperm than in somatic cells. Interestingly, sperm samples at Alu Yb8 repetitive sequences of infertile patients showed significantly lower DNA methylation levels than controls. Our results are descriptive and further studies would be needed to elucidate the functional effects of aberrant DNA methylation on male fertility. Overall, our data suggest that aberrant sperm DNA methylation might contribute to fertility impairment in couples with unexplained infertility and they provide a promising basis for future research.