Kinetics of DNA Methylation in Eukaryotes

The methylation and demethylation of the 5-position in cytosine, which stops the expression of the gene in vertebrates, is passed along on one strand of DNA. The daughter cells may spontaneously methylate (at rate ) or demethylate (at rate ). At the step of successive divisions, the probabilities of the cell having one, two, or none of its labile sites methylated are denoted by , , and , which give the proportion of homomethylated, hemi-methylated, and unmethylated sites, respectively, in generation .

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DETAILS

The kinetic equations,
,
,
,
are recast as:
and the time evolution of is calculated by recursion.
Reference
[1] S. P. Otto and V. Walbot, "DNA Methylation in Eukaryotes: Kinetics of Demethylation and de Novo Methylation During the Life Cycle," Genetics, 124(2), 1990 pp. 429–437. www.genetics.org/content/124/2/429.full.pdf.
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