DNA methylation profiles in monozygotic and dizygotic twins

Zachary A. Kaminsky, Thomas Tang, Sun Chong Wang, Carolyn Ptak, Gabriel H.T. Oh, Albert H.C. Wong, Laura A. Feldcamp, Carl Virtanen, Jonas Halfvarson, Curt Tysk, Allan F. McRae, Peter M. Visscher, Grant W. Montgomery, Irving I. Gottesman, Nicholas G. Martin, Art Petronis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Twin studies have provided the basis for genetic and epidemiological studies in human complex traits. As epigenetic factors can contribute to phenotypic outcomes, we conducted a DNA methylation analysis in white blood cells (WBC), buccal epithelial cells and gut biopsies of 114 monozygotic (MZ) twins as well as WBC and buccal epithelial cells of 80 dizygotic (DZ) twins using 12K CpG island microarrays. Here we provide the first annotation of epigenetic metastability of ∼6,000 unique genomic regions in MZ twins. An intraclass correlation (ICC)-based comparison of matched MZ and DZ twins showed significantly higher epigenetic difference in buccal cells of DZ co-twins (P = 1.2 × 10-294). Although such higher epigenetic discordance in DZ twins can result from DNA sequence differences, our in silico SNP analyses and animal studies favor the hypothesis that it is due to epigenomic differences in the zygotes, suggesting that molecular mechanisms of heritability may not be limited to DNA sequence differences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)240-245
Number of pages6
JournalNature genetics
Volume41
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'DNA methylation profiles in monozygotic and dizygotic twins'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Kaminsky, Z. A., Tang, T., Wang, S. C., Ptak, C., Oh, G. H. T., Wong, A. H. C., Feldcamp, L. A., Virtanen, C., Halfvarson, J., Tysk, C., McRae, A. F., Visscher, P. M., Montgomery, G. W., Gottesman, I. I., Martin, N. G., & Petronis, A. (2009). DNA methylation profiles in monozygotic and dizygotic twins. Nature genetics, 41(2), 240-245. https://doi.org/10.1038/ng.286