Aug 20, 2009

Maize centromeres: structure, function, epigenetics

Annual Review of Genetics
James A Birchler, Fangpu Han


The ability of centromeres to organize the kinetochore has an epigenetic component in that DNA sequence alone does not necessarily serve as the determinant of activity. The centromeres of maize have been well characterized with regard to the sequence repeats present at all primary constrictions. The supernumerary B chromosome centromere contains an additional specific repeat that is represented in the active core and that allows it to be studied against the background of the other centromeres. The foundational proteins of the kinetochore have been characterized, and an RNA component has been defined. Numerous examples of inactive centromeres have been characterized for both A and B chromosomal centromeres indicating the ease with which plant centromeres become inactive. Under some circumstances, inactive centromeres can exhibit reactivation at their formerly inactive sites. This observation suggests that a DNA-based topological component also operates for centromere identity.

  • References51
  • Citations24


  • References51
  • Citations24


Mentioned in this Paper

Protein Methylation
Transposition of Intestine (Disorder)
CENPA gene
Inbred Strain
Mitotic Metaphase
Mitotic Anaphase
Protein Phosphorylation

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