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© 2017 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. The imprinting of the mouse Peg3 domain is controlled through the Peg3-DMR, which obtains its maternal-specific DNA methylation during oogenesis. In the current study, we deleted an oocyte-specific alternative promoter, termed U1, which is localized 20 kb upstream of the Peg3-DMR. Deletion of this alternative promoter resulted in complete removal of the maternal-specific DNA methylation on the Peg3-DMR. Consequently, the imprinted genes in the Peg3 domain become biallelic in the mutants with maternal transmission of the deletion. Expression levels of the imprinted genes were also affected in the mutants: 2-fold upregulation of Peg3 and Usp29 and downregulation of Zim1 to basal levels. Breeding experiments further indicated under-representation of females among the surviving mutants, a potential sex-biased outcome from the biallelic expression of the Peg3 domain. Overall, the results suggest that U1-driven transcription may be required for establishing oocyte-specific DNA methylation on the Peg3 domain.

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