Methyl-CpG-binding domain (MBD) proteins in plants

Gideon Grafi, Assaf Zemach, Letizia Pitto

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    41 Scopus citations


    Cytosine methylation is the most prevalent epigenetic modification of plant nuclear DNA, which occurs in symmetrical CpG or CpNpG as well as in non-symmetrical contexts. Intensive studies demonstrated the central role played by cytosine methylation in genome organization, gene expression and in plant growth and development. However, the way by which the methyl group is interpreted into a functional state has only recently begun to be explored with the isolation and characterization of methylated DNA binding proteins capable of binding 5-methylcytosine. These proteins belong to an evolutionary conserved protein family initially described in animals termed methyl-CpG-binding domain (MBD) proteins. Here, we highlight recent advances and present new prospects concerning plant MBD proteins and their possible role in controlling chromatin structure mediated by CpG methylation.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)287-294
    Number of pages8
    JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Gene Structure and Expression
    Issue number5-6
    StatePublished - 1 May 2007


    • Arginine methyltransferase (PRMT)
    • Cytosine methylation
    • Decrease in DNA Methylation 1 (DDM1)
    • Heterochromatin
    • Methyl-CpG-binding domain (MBD) protein
    • Nucleolar organizing region (NOR)
    • Plant

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Structural Biology
    • Biophysics
    • Biochemistry
    • Genetics


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