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Lab Reports
April 4, 2017

Allele-Specific Gene Expression May Influence Mental Health

JAMA. 2017;317(13):1307. doi:10.1001/jama.2017.2529

During brain development, neurons may preferentially silence genetic alleles inherited from one parent, according to a recent study published in Neuron. This differential activation affects about 85% of genes in the developing brain, and as the brain matures, neurons increasingly express both parents' alleles equally. For at least 10% of genes, however, maternal and paternal copies continue to be differentially expressed in the adult brain.