UHRF1 links the histone code and DNA methylation to ensure faithful epigenetic memory inheritance

Christian Bronner, Guy Fuhrmann, Frederic Chedin, Marcella Macaluso, Sirano Dhe-Paganon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Epigenetics is the study of the transmission of cell memory through mitosis or meiosis that is not based on the DNA sequence. At the molecular level the epigenetic memory of a cell is embedded in DNA methylation, histone post-translational modifications, RNA interference and histone isoform variation. There is a tight link between histone post-translational modifications (the histone code) and DNA methylation, as modifications of histones contribute to the establishment of DNA methylation patterns and vice versa. Interestingly, proteins have recently been identified that can simultaneously read both methylated DNA and the histone code. UHRF1 fulfills these requirements by having unique structural domains that allow concurrent recognition of histone modifications and methylated DNA. Herein, we review our current knowledge of UHRF1 and discuss how this protein ensures the link between histone marks and DNA methylation. Understanding the molecular functions of this protein may reveal the physiological relevance of the linkage between these layers of epigenetic marks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)29-36
Number of pages8
JournalGenetics and Epigenetics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 2009


  • DNMT1
  • Epigenetic code inheritance
  • Hemi-methylated DNA
  • Histones
  • SRA domain
  • Tudor domain
  • UHRF1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Genetics


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