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In this study, we performed the first systematic survey of DNA methylation status of the CpG islands of the PEG3 (Paternally expressed gene 3) imprinted domain in the mouse, cow, and human genomes. Previous studies have shown that the region surrounding the first exon of PEG3 contains a differentially methylated CpG island. In addition, we have discovered two previously unreported differentially methylated regions (DMR): one in the promoter region of mouse Zim3 and another in the promoter region of human USP29. In the cow, the Peg3-CpG island was the only area that showed DMR status. We have also examined the methylation status of several CpG islands in this region using human tumor-derived DNA. The CpG islands near PEG3 and USP29 both showed hypermethylation in DNA derived from breast and ovarian tumors. Overall, this study shows that the PEG3 imprinted domain of humans, cows, and mice contains differing numbers of DMRs, but the PEG3-CpG island is the only DMR that is conserved among these three species. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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