Snord116-dependent diurnal rhythm of DNA methylation in mouse cortex

Rochelle L. Coulson, Dag H. Yasui, Keith W. Dunaway, Benjamin I. Laufer, Annie Vogel Ciernia, Yihui Zhu, Charles E. Mordaunt, Theresa S. Totah, Janine M. Lasalle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Rhythmic oscillations of physiological processes depend on integrating the circadian clock and diurnal environment. DNA methylation is epigenetically responsive to daily rhythms, as a subset of CpG dinucleotides in brain exhibit diurnal rhythmic methylation. Here, we show a major genetic effect on rhythmic methylation in a mouse Snord116 deletion model of the imprinted disorder Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS). More than 23,000 diurnally rhythmic CpGs are identified in wild-type cortex, with nearly all lost or phase-shifted in PWS. Circadian dysregulation of a second imprinted Snord cluster at the Temple/Kagami-Ogata syndrome locus is observed at the level of methylation, transcription, and chromatin, providing mechanistic evidence of cross-talk. Genes identified by diurnal epigenetic changes in PWS mice overlapped rhythmic and PWS-specific genes in human brain and are enriched for PWS-relevant phenotypes and pathways. These results support the proposed evolutionary relationship between imprinting and sleep, and suggest possible chronotherapy in the treatment of PWS and related disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1616
JournalNature Communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2018
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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