Yamakoshi, K., and Shimoda, N. (2003) De novo DNA methylation at the CpG island of the zebrafish no tail gene. Genesis (New York, N.Y. : 2000). 37(4):195-202.
The zebrafish no tail gene (ntl) is indispensable for the formation of the notochord and the tail structure. Here we showed that de novo DNA methylation occurred at the CpG island of ntl. The methylation started at the segmentation stage and continued after the larval stage. However, it occurred predominantly between 14 and 48 h postfertilization, which overlaps the period in which ntl expression disappears in the notochord and the tailbud. This inverse correlation, together with the methylation-associated formation of an inaccessible chromatin structure at the ntl CpG island region, suggested the involvement of the de novo methylation in ntl repression. Since no changes in methylation patterns were observed at the CpG islands of four other zebrafish genes, there must be a mechanism in zebrafish for specific methylation of the ntl CpG island.