LagoZ and LagZ, two genes derived from the LacZ gene to study epigenetics

Isabelle Henry, Sylvie Forlani, Séverine Vaillant, John Muschler, André Choulika, Jean François Nicolas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The methylation of 5'CpG 3' dinucleotides within genes creates potential targets for protein complexes that bind to methylated DNA sequences and to histone deacetylases (MBD-HDAC). This can lead to transcriptional repression by modification of chromatin. To test the importance of this repression in vivo and to determine when during development these epigenetic controls are placed on genes, two novel genes have been engineered by directed mutagenesis of the CpG-rich LacZ gene that are depleted of (LagZ) or completely lacking (LagoZ) CpG sequences. We report that the expression (transcriptional and translational) of the three genes is indistinguishable in transient assays in cleaving mouse embryos. Therefore, the complete absence of CpG sequences within three kilobases of coding sequence is compatible with its maintenance in the nucleus and with its expression. These molecules can now be used to study the ontogenesis of the CpG-dependent repressive system in intact organisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1061-1070
Number of pages10
JournalComptes Rendus de l'Academie des Sciences - Serie III
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Acetylation deacetylation of histones
  • CpG
  • Epigenetics
  • LagZ
  • LagoZ
  • Methylation of DNA
  • Transcriptional repression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • Developmental Biology


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