Open Sesame: Activating dormant replication origins in the mouse immunoglobulin heavy chain (Igh) locus

James A. Borowiec, Carl L. Schildkraut

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

14 Scopus citations


Chromosomal DNA replication in mammals initiates from replication origins whose activity differs in accordance with cell type and differentiation state. In addition to origins that are active in unperturbed conditions, chromosomes also contain dormant origins that can become functional in response to certain genotoxic stress conditions. Improper regulation of origin usage can cause genomic instability leading to tumorigenesis. We review findings from recent single-molecule DNA fiber studies examining replication of the mouse immunoglobulin heavy chain (Igh) locus, in which origin activity over a 400. kb region is subject to dramatic developmental regulation. Possible models are discussed to explain such differential origin usage, particularly during replication stress conditions that can activate dormant origins.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)284-292
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent Opinion in Cell Biology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2011


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

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