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The propagation of X chromosome inactivation is thought to be mediated by the cis- limited spreading of the non-protein coding Xist transcript. In this report we have investigated the localization of Xist RNA on rodent metaphase chromosomes. We show that Xist RNA exhibits a banded pattern on the inactive X and is excluded from regions of constitutive heterochromatin. The banding pattern suggests a preferential association with gene-rich, G-light regions. Analysis of X:autosome rearrangements revealed that restricted propagation of X inactivation into cis -linked autosomal material is reflected by a corresponding limited spread of Xist RNA. We discuss these results in the context of models for the function of Xist RNA in the propagation of X inactivation.


Journal article


Hum Mol Genet

Publication Date





195 - 204


Animals, Arvicolinae, Cells, Cultured, Chromosome Mapping, Dosage Compensation, Genetic, Female, In Situ Hybridization, Fluorescence, Male, Metaphase, Mice, RNA, RNA, Long Noncoding, RNA, Untranslated, Transcription Factors, Translocation, Genetic, X Chromosome