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MGA Suppresses Meiosis-related Genes in mESCs

Non-canonical PRC1.6 functions to inhibit the precocious and ectopic onset of meiosis in germ cells and embryonic stem cells (ESCs), respectively. Uncovering the detailed molecular bases of PRC1.6 function remains a priority as PRC1.6 disruption may be directly linked to embryonic lethality and infertility. In a new STEM CELLS article, researchers led by Ayumu Suzuki and Akihiko Okuda (Saitama Medical University, Saitama, Japan)address this issue by characterizing MGA (MAX Dimerization Protein), one of the essential components of the PRC1.6 complex. These data revealed that MGA functions to repress numerous genes in mESCs (meiosis-related genes, in particular) through two distinct DNA binding domains. This article data also identified MEIOSIN as a linchpin molecule in the transition from negative to positive regulation on meiotic onset (Image - Model illustrating the role of MEIOSIN as a linchpin molecule controlling ectopic onset of meiosis in mouse ESCs).