Research Repository

5-hydroxymethylcytosine is highly dynamic across human fetal brain development

Spiers, H and Hannon, E and Schalkwyk, LC and Bray, NJ and Mill, J (2017) '5-hydroxymethylcytosine is highly dynamic across human fetal brain development.' BMC Genomics, 18 (1). 738-. ISSN 1471-2164

5-hydroxymethylcytosine is highly dynamic across human fetal brain development.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (1MB) | Preview


Background: Epigenetic processes play a key role in orchestrating transcriptional regulation during the development of the human central nervous system. We previously described dynamic changes in DNA methylation (5mC) occurring during human fetal brain development, but other epigenetic processes operating during this period have not been extensively explored. Of particular interest is DNA hydroxymethylation (5hmC), a modification that is enriched in the human brain and hypothesized to play an important role in neuronal function, learning and memory. In this study, we quantify 5hmC across the genome of 71 human fetal brain samples spanning 23 to 184 days post-conception. Results: We identify widespread changes in 5hmC occurring during human brain development, notable sex-differences in 5hmC in the fetal brain, and interactions between 5mC and 5hmC at specific sites. Finally, we identify loci where 5hmC in the fetal brain is associated with genetic variation. Conclusions: This study represents the first systematic analysis of dynamic changes in 5hmC across human neurodevelopment and highlights the potential importance of this modification in the human brain. A searchable database of our fetal brain 5hmC data is available as a resource to the research community at

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Brain; Fetus; Humans; 5-Methylcytosine; Sex Characteristics; Quantitative Trait Loci; Time Factors
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH426 Genetics
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Life Sciences, School of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 19 Oct 2017 12:42
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2022 13:42

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item