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Polycomb complex recruitment in pluripotent stem cells

The recruitment of the silencing complex Polycomb group (PcG) to its target sites in mammalian cells has remained elusive. A prevalent model proposes that the PRC1 component is recruited through recognition of methylated H3K27 found at target sites occupied by the PRC2 component. However, mounting evidence suggests that PRC2-independent mechanisms of PRC1 recruitment exist. Three studies describe that the histone demethylase Kdm2b binds to unmethylated CpG islands and recruits a subset of PRC1 complexes to chromatin in pluripotent stem cells.

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Figure 1: Differences in subunit composition of PRC1 complexes account for different recruitment mechanisms.

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Correspondence to Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte.

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Barrero, M., Belmonte, J. Polycomb complex recruitment in pluripotent stem cells. Nat Cell Biol 15, 348–350 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1038/ncb2723

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