Date of Original Version
© 2012 The Authors
Abstract or Description
Genomic imprinting occurs when expression of an allele differs based on the sex of the parent that transmitted the allele. In D. melanogaster, imprinting can occur, but its impact on allelic expression genome-wide is unclear. Here, we search for imprinted genes in D. melanogaster using RNA-seq to compare allele-specific expression between pools of 7- to 10-day-old adult female progeny from reciprocal crosses. We identified 119 genes with allelic expression consistent with imprinting, and these genes showed significant clustering within the genome. Surprisingly, additional analysis of several of these genes showed that either genomic heterogeneity or high levels of intrinsic noise caused imprinting-like allelic expression. Consequently, our data provide no convincing evidence of imprinting for D. melanogaster genes in their native genomic context. Elucidating sources of false-positive signals for imprinting in allele-specific RNA-seq data, as done here, is critical given the growing popularity of this method for identifying imprinted genes.
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Cell Reports, 2, 1, 69-75.