Epigenetic mark reduces DNA mutation rate

May 16, 2016—A study by Benjamin Schuster-Boeckler, Skirmantas Kriaucionis and colleagues at Ludwig Oxford gives new twist on how chemical modifications on DNA alter the rate of mutations. Their work—now published in eLife—investigated the effect of the epigenetically modified DNA base 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) on the frequency of mutations in cancer and normal tissues. They show that 5hmC is associated with decreased mutations; the opposite effect to the better-studied epigenetic modification 5-methylcytosine.


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