Biallelic expression of all four IGF-II promoters and its association with increased methylation of H19 gene in human brain

Shili Zhan, Shixing Zhan, Lijuan Zhang, Marcus Van, Choh Young, Lee J. Helman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The human IGF-II gene is maternally imprinted in all tissues except adult liver and the choroid plexus/leptomeninges of the central nervous system where IGF-II is biallelically expressed. In human liver, it has recently been reported that this biallelic expression only involves the promoter P1 while the promoters P2-P4 direct IGF-II transcription monoallelically. To explore whether or not biallelic expression of the IGF- II promoters in human CNS displays the same pattern as in liver, we examined the allelic expression status of the four IGF-II promoters in human brain. We found that all four IGF-II promoters in human fetal and adult brain were expressed from both parental alleles. Furthermore, the levels of methylation of the 3' region of H19 gene in fetal brain were higher than those in other tissues with monoallelic expression of IGF-II. Since similar findings have been reported in Wilms' tumor, these data suggest a similar mechanism may be responsible for loss of imprinting of IGF-II in normal brain and Wilms' tumor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)283-290
Number of pages8
JournalBrain research
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 11 1998



  • CNS
  • H19
  • IGF-II
  • Imprinting
  • Methylation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology

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