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Conservation and divergence in modules of the transcriptional programs of the human and mouse immune systems

By Tal Shay, Vladimir Jojic, Or Zuk, Christophe Benoist, Daphne Koller, Aviv Regev, ImmGen Consortium

Posted 22 Mar 2018
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/286211

Studies in mouse have shed important light on human hematopoietic differentiation and disease. However, substantial differences between the two species often limit the translation of findings from mouse to human. Here, we compare modules of co-expressed genes in human and mouse immune cells based on compendia of genome-wide profiles. We show that the overall modular organization of the transcriptional program is conserved. We highlight modules of co-expressed genes in one species that dissolve or split in the other species. Many of the associated regulatory mechanisms - as reflected by computationally inferred trans regulators, or enriched cis-regulatory elements - are conserved between the species. Nevertheless, the degree of conservation in regulatory mechanism is lower than that of expression, suggesting that distinct regulation may underlie some of the conserved transcriptional responses.

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