Jun 21, 2016

The formation of fear extinction memory requires the accumulation of N6-methyl-2-deoxyadenosine in DNA

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Xiang LiTimothy William Bredy


Here we report that the recently identified DNA modification N6-methyl-2-deoxyadenosine (m6dA) is dynamically regulated in post-mitotic neurons and accumulates within promoters and genomic coding sequences of neurons activated by fear extinction learning in adult C57/Bl6 mice. The deposition of m6dA leads to an open chromatin state as well as the recruitment of the activating transcription factor Yin-Yang 1 and RNA polymerase II, which are critical for activity-induced brain-derived neurotrophic factor gene expression and required for the formation of fear extinction memory. These findings expand the scope of DNA modifications in the adult brain and highlight the discovery of DNA m6dA as a novel neuroepigenetic mechanism associated with learning and memory.

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Mentioned in this Paper

Activating Transcription Factors
RNA Polymerase II
DNA Modification Process
Learning Extinction
Biochemical Mechanism
DNA-Directed RNA Polymerase

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