Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

  • News & Views
  • Published:


Sperm granules mediate epigenetic inheritance

Epigenetic inheritance is the transfer of non-DNA information across generations. A new study identifies sperm-specific PEI granules as essential for paternal epigenetic inheritance. PEI granule partitioning to sperm requires palmitoylation and myosin VI activity, suggesting lipidation-dependent granule transport on vesicles.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Access options

Buy this article

Prices may be subject to local taxes which are calculated during checkout

Fig. 1: Membrane-tethered PEI granules partition to spermatids to mediate paternal epigenetic inheritance.


  1. Bošković, A. & Rando, O. J. Annu. Rev. Genet. 52, 1–21 (2018).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Dodson, A. E. & Kennedy, S. Dev. Cell 55, 4–17 (2020).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Lehtiniemi, T. & Kotaja, N. Reproduction 155, R77–R91 (2018).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Schreier, J. et al. Nat. Cell Biol. (2022).

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  5. Kelleher, J. F. et al. Curr. Biol. 10, 1489–1496 (2000).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Zhou, L. et al. Dev. Cell 40, 453–466.e5 (2017).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Snead, W. T. & Gladfelter, A. S. Mol. Cell 76, 295–305 (2019).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. Sundby, A. E., Molnar, R. I. & Claycomb, J. M. Trends Cell Biol. 31, 387–401 (2021).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  9. Stoeckius, M., Grün, D. & Rajewsky, N. EMBO J. 33, 1740–1750 (2014).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  10. Updike, D. & Strome, S. J. Androl. 31, 53–60 (2010).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  11. Shin, Y. & Brangwynne, C. P. Science 357, eaaf4382 (2017).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. Collins, T., Stone, J. R. & Williams, A. J. Mol. Cell. Biol. 21, 3609–3615 (2001).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  13. Gleason, E. J., Lindsey, W. C., Kroft, T. L., Singson, A. W. & L’Hernault, S. W. Genetics 172, 145–158 (2006).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  14. Hird, S. N., Paulsen, J. E. & Strome, S. Development 122, 1303–1312 (1996).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  15. Liao, Y.-C. et al. Cell 179, 147–164.e20 (2019).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Geraldine Seydoux.

Ethics declarations

Competing interests

G.S. serves on the scientific advisory board for Dewpoint Therapeutics. L.T. declares no competing interests.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Thomas, L., Seydoux, G. Sperm granules mediate epigenetic inheritance. Nat Cell Biol 24, 129–130 (2022).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing