Recent evidence described 6-methyladenine (6 mA) as a novel epigenetic regulator in a variety of multicellular species, including rodents; however, its capacity to influence gene expression in the mammalian brain remains unknown. We examined if 6 mA is present and regulated by early life stress associated with predator odor exposure (POE) within the developing rat amygdala. Our results provide evidence that 6 mA is present in the mammalian brain, is altered within the Htr2a gene promoter by early life stress and biological sex, and increased 6 mA is associated with gene repression. These data suggest that methylation of adenosine within mammalian DNA may be used as an additional epigenetic biomarker for investigating the development of stress-induced neuropathology.
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