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Prof. Dr. Antoine H.F.M. Peters


Prof. Dr. Antoine H.F.M. Peters
EMBO Young Investigator
Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research (FMI)
Maulbeerstrasse 66
CH-4058 Basel/Switzerland

Phone +41 61 697 87 61
Fax +41 61 697 39 76
Antoine Peters is Group Leader at the Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research in Basel. His group is interested in the epigenetic mechanisms that contribute to the heritability of cell identity of stem cells and during cellular differentiation and that safeguard genome stability. In particular, his group aims at understanding the role of and molecular interplay between histone methyltransferases, Polycomb group proteins and DNA methyltransferases in epigenetic (re)programming in mouse in-vitro systems as well as in pre-implantation and early post-implantation embryos. Towards these goals, his group performs gain- and loss-of-function studies in stem cells, in germ cells in which gene deficiency is induced at specific stages of their development, as well as in pre- and post-implantation embryos conditionally deficient for maternal and/or zygotic gene expression of epigenetic regulators. As functional readouts, the group analyzes the formation and function of heterochromatin, gene transcription, establishment and maintenance of genomic imprinting, nuclear organization, and cell fate.
The group has several collaborations with other groups in Basel and abroad. Antoine Peters is since 2008 an EMBO Young Investigator. He and his group have published more than 40 original publications.

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Recent publications related to stem cells:

  • Brykczynska U, Hisano M, Erkek S, Ramos L, Oakeley EJ, Roloff TC, Beisel C, Schübeler D, Stadler MB. and Peters AH. (2010). Repressive and active histone methylation mark distinct promoters in human and mouse spermatozoa. Nature Struct Mol Biol. 17:679-87.
  • Posfai E, Kunzmann R, Brochard V, Salvaing J, Cabuy E, Roloff TC, Liu Z, Tardat M, van Lohuizen M, Vidal M, Beaujean N. and Peters AH. (2012). Polycomb function during oogenesis is required for mouse embryonic development. Genes Dev. 26:920-32.
  • Yokobayashi S, Liang CY, Kohler H, Nestorov P, Liu Z, Vidal M, van Lohuizen M, Roloff TC, Peters AH. (2013). PRC1 coordinates timing of sexual differentiation of female primordial germ cells. Nature 495:236-40.
  • Erkek S, Hisano M, Liang CY, Gill M, Murr R, Dieker J, Schübeler D, van der Vlag J, Stadler MB, Peters AH. (2013). Molecular determinants of nucleosome retention at CpG-rich sequences in mouse spermatozoa. Nat Struct Mol Biol. 20:868-75.
  • Hisano M, Erkek S, Dessus-Babus S, Ramos L, Stadler MB, Peters AH. (2013). Genome-wide chromatin analysis in mature mouse and human spermatozoa. Nature Protoc. 8:2449-70.
  • van de Werken C, van der Heijden GW, Eleveld C, Teeuwssen M, Albert M, Baarends WM, Laven JS, Peters AH, Baart EB. (2014). Paternal heterochromatin formation in human embryos is H3K9/HP1 directed and primed by sperm-derived histone modifications. Nat Commun. 5:5868.
  • Tardat M, Albert M, Kunzmann R, Liu Z, Kaustov L, Thierry R, Duan S, Brykczynska U, Arrowsmith CH, Peters AH. (2015). Cbx2 targets PRC1 to constitutive heterochromatin in mouse zygotes in a parent-of-origin-dependent manner. Mol Cell 58:157-71.
  • Nestorov P, Hotz HR, Liu Z, Peters AH. (2015). Dynamic expression of chromatin modifiers during developmental transitions in mouse preimplantation embryos. Sci Rep. 5:14347.
  • Royo H, Stadler MB, Peters AH. (2016). Alternative Computational Analysis Shows No Evidence for Nucleosome Enrichment at Repetitive Sequences in Mammalian Spermatozoa. Dev Cell 37:98-104.
  • Stavropoulou V, Kaspar S, Brault L, Sanders MA, Juge S, Morettini S, Tzankov A, Iacovino M, Lau IJ, Milne TA, Royo H, Kyba M, Valk PJ, Peters AH, Schwaller J. (2016). MLL-AF9 Expression in Hematopoietic Stem Cells Drives a Highly Invasive AML Expressing EMT-Related Genes Linked to Poor Outcome. Cancer Cell 30:43-58.
  • Eymery A, Liu Z, Ozonov EA, Stadler MB, Peters AH. (2016). The methyltransferase Setdb1 is essential for meiosis and mitosis in mouse oocytes and early embryos. Development 143:2767-79.


  • Véron N. and Peters AH. (2011). Epigenetics: Tet proteins in the limelight. Nature 19;473:293-4.
  • Gill ME, Erkek S. and Peters AH. (2012). Parental epigenetic control of embryogenesis: a balance between inheritance and reprogramming? Curr Opin Cell Biol. 24:387-96.
  • Nestorov P, Tardat M, Peters AH. (2013). H3K9/HP1 and Polycomb: two key epigenetic silencing pathways for gene regulation and embryo development. Curr Top Dev Biol. 104:243-91.