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Retrotransposing a promoter for development

Formerly regarded as ‘junk’ DNA, transposable elements are now thought to be players in genome evolution. A new study reveals remarkable conservation of a retrotransposon insertion acting as an alternative promoter to drive the expression of a cell cycle regulator isoform in early embryos, potentially controlling the timing of pre-implantation development.

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Fig. 1: A retrotransposon drives expression of an isoform of the cell cycle regulator Cdk2ap1.


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Correspondence to Maria-Elena Torres-Padilla.

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Canat, A., Torres-Padilla, ME. Retrotransposing a promoter for development. Nat Cell Biol 23, 1221–1223 (2021).

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