De novo methylation and expression of retroviral genomes during mouse embryogenesis

Nature. 1982 Aug 12;298(5875):623-8. doi: 10.1038/298623a0.


Retrovirus genomes introduced into mouse zygotes by microinjection of cloned DNA, or into morula stage pre-implantation mouse embryos by infection with Moloney murine leukaemia virus (M-MuLV), became de novo methylated and were blocked in expression. No restriction of virus expression and no de novo methylation were observed when post-implantation mouse embryos were infected with virus. Efficient de novo methylation activity may be an important characteristic of gene regulation in early mouse embryos.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Transformation, Viral
  • DNA, Viral / genetics
  • Embryonic Development
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • Genes, Viral*
  • Leukemia Virus, Murine / genetics
  • Methylation*
  • Mice / embryology*
  • Pregnancy
  • Retroviridae / genetics*
  • Virus Replication


  • DNA, Viral