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Mosaic and polymorphic imprinting of the WT1 gene in humans


We have examined the imprinting of the Wilms' tumour suppressor gene (WT1) in human tissues. We confirm that WT1 is biallelically expressed in the kidney, however, in five of nine preterm placentae WT1 was expressed largely or exclusively from the maternal allele. Monoallelic expression of WT1 was also found in two fetal brains. These data demonstrate that WT1 can undergo tissue specific imprinting. Furthermore, because monoallelic expression of WT1 was not found in all placentae examined, WT1 imprinting may be genetically polymorphic within the human population.

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