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Epigenetic modifications are stable but potentially reversible alterations in gene expression that occur without permanent changes in DNA sequence. They can be transmitted mitotically to daughter cells and, in some cases, even to the next generation. Epigenetic modifications have an essential role in determining cell fate and regulating flowering. They also defend plants against virus infection, help maintain genome integrity, and prevent deleterious expression of transposable elements and retroviruses.
Recent years have seen a dramatic increase of research activity in this area. This is the first volume to provide an overview of our current knowledge of epigenetic mechanisms in plants. It is directed at researchers and professionals working in plant molecular genetics, developmental biology and biochemistry, and will provide a point of entry to the detailed literature.
1. Transgene silencing Ann Depicker and Matthew Sanders, University of Gent, Belgium and Peter Meyer, Centre for Plant Sciences, University of Leeds, UK 2. RNA interference: double-stranded RNAs and the processing machinery Jan Kooter, Department of Genetics, Vrije University Amsterdam, The Netherlands 3. RNA-mediated DNA methylation Marjori Matzke, Tatsuo Kanno, Bruno Huettel and Estelle Jaligot, Gregor Mendel-Institut, Vienna, Austria; M. Florian Mette, IPK Gatersleben, Germany; David Kreil, Department of Genetics/Inference Group, University of Cambridge, UK; Lucia Daxinger, Philipp Rovina, Werner Aufsatz and Antonius Matzke, Gregor Mendel-Institut, Vienna, Austria 4. Heterochromatin and the control of gene silencing in plants Gunter Reuter, A Fischer and I Hofmann, Martin Luther University, Institute for Genetics, Halle, Germany 5. When alleles meet: paramutation Marieke Louwers, Max Haring and Maike Stam, Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands 6. Genomic imprinting in plants: a predominantly maternal affair Ueli Grossniklaus, Institute of Plant Biology, University of Zurich, Switzerland 7. Nucleolar dominance and rRNA gene dosage control: a paradigm for transcriptional regulation via an epigenetic on/off switch Nuno Neves and Wanda Viegas, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Monte da Caparica, Portugal and Craig Pikaard, Biology Department, Washington University, Missouri, USA 8. Virus induced gene silencing Tamas Dalmay, School of Biological Sciences, University of East Anglia, UK 9. MicroRNAs: micro-managing the plant genome Sandra Floyd and John Bowman, Section of Plant Biology, University of California at Davis
Professor Peter Meyer, Centre for Plant Sciences, University of Leeds, UK
Given the rapid increase in publication of scientific papers involved in plant epigenetics, a book that provides comprehensive coverage of recent knowledge is earnestly desired by Plant Scientists. Plant Epigenetics edited by Peter Meyer is published just at the right moment.Annals of Botany, 1-1, 2007