Genomic imprinting is theorized to exist in all placental mammals and some marsupials; however, extensive comparative analysis of animals aside from humans and mice remains incomplete. Here we report conservation of genomic imprinting in the bovine at the X chromosome inactivation-specific transcript (XIST), insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2), and gene trap locus 2 (GTL2) loci. Coding single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) between Bos gaurus and Bos taurus were detected at the XIST, IGF2, and GTL2 loci, which have previously been identified as imprinted in either humans, mice, or sheep. Expression patterns of parental alleles in F1 hybrids indicated preferential paternal expression at the XIST locus solely in the chorion of females, whereas analysis of the IGF2 and GTL2 loci indicated preferential paternal and maternal expression of alleles, respectively, in both fetal and placental tissues. Comparative sequence analysis of the XIST locus and adjacent regions suggests that repression of the maternal allele in the bovine is controlled by a different mechanism than in mice, further reinforcing the importance of comparative analysis of imprinting.
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