WorldWideScience

Sample records for alternative epigenetic chromatin

  1. Titration and hysteresis in epigenetic chromatin silencing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dayarian, Adel; Sengupta, Anirvan M.

    2013-06-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms of silencing via heritable chromatin modifications play a major role in gene regulation and cell fate specification. We consider a model of epigenetic chromatin silencing in budding yeast and study the bifurcation diagram and characterize the bistable and the monostable regimes. The main focus of this paper is to examine how the perturbations altering the activity of histone modifying enzymes affect the epigenetic states. We analyze the implications of having the total number of silencing proteins, given by the sum of proteins bound to the nucleosomes and the ones available in the ambient, to be constant. This constraint couples different regions of chromatin through the shared reservoir of ambient silencing proteins. We show that the response of the system to perturbations depends dramatically on the titration effect caused by the above constraint. In particular, for a certain range of overall abundance of silencing proteins, the hysteresis loop changes qualitatively with certain jump replaced by continuous merger of different states. In addition, we find a nonmonotonic dependence of gene expression on the rate of histone deacetylation activity of Sir2. We discuss how these qualitative predictions of our model could be compared with experimental studies of the yeast system under anti-silencing drugs.

  2. Titration and hysteresis in epigenetic chromatin silencing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dayarian, Adel; Sengupta, Anirvan M

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms of silencing via heritable chromatin modifications play a major role in gene regulation and cell fate specification. We consider a model of epigenetic chromatin silencing in budding yeast and study the bifurcation diagram and characterize the bistable and the monostable regimes. The main focus of this paper is to examine how the perturbations altering the activity of histone modifying enzymes affect the epigenetic states. We analyze the implications of having the total number of silencing proteins, given by the sum of proteins bound to the nucleosomes and the ones available in the ambient, to be constant. This constraint couples different regions of chromatin through the shared reservoir of ambient silencing proteins. We show that the response of the system to perturbations depends dramatically on the titration effect caused by the above constraint. In particular, for a certain range of overall abundance of silencing proteins, the hysteresis loop changes qualitatively with certain jump replaced by continuous merger of different states. In addition, we find a nonmonotonic dependence of gene expression on the rate of histone deacetylation activity of Sir2. We discuss how these qualitative predictions of our model could be compared with experimental studies of the yeast system under anti-silencing drugs. (paper)

  3. EBV Latency Types Adopt Alternative Chromatin Conformations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tempera, Italo; Klichinsky, Michael; Lieberman, Paul M.

    2011-01-01

    Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) can establish latent infections with distinct gene expression patterns referred to as latency types. These different latency types are epigenetically stable and correspond to different promoter utilization. Here we explore the three-dimensional conformations of the EBV genome in different latency types. We employed Chromosome Conformation Capture (3C) assay to investigate chromatin loop formation between the OriP enhancer and the promoters that determine type I (Qp) or type III (Cp) gene expression. We show that OriP is in close physical proximity to Qp in type I latency, and to Cp in type III latency. The cellular chromatin insulator and boundary factor CTCF was implicated in EBV chromatin loop formation. Combining 3C and ChIP assays we found that CTCF is physically associated with OriP-Qp loop formation in type I and OriP-Cp loop formation in type III latency. Mutations in the CTCF binding site located at Qp disrupt loop formation between Qp and OriP, and lead to the activation of Cp transcription. Mutation of the CTCF binding site at Cp, as well as siRNA depletion of CTCF eliminates both OriP-associated loops, indicating that CTCF plays an integral role in loop formation. These data indicate that epigenetically stable EBV latency types adopt distinct chromatin architectures that depend on CTCF and mediate alternative promoter targeting by the OriP enhancer. PMID:21829357

  4. EBV latency types adopt alternative chromatin conformations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Italo Tempera

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV can establish latent infections with distinct gene expression patterns referred to as latency types. These different latency types are epigenetically stable and correspond to different promoter utilization. Here we explore the three-dimensional conformations of the EBV genome in different latency types. We employed Chromosome Conformation Capture (3C assay to investigate chromatin loop formation between the OriP enhancer and the promoters that determine type I (Qp or type III (Cp gene expression. We show that OriP is in close physical proximity to Qp in type I latency, and to Cp in type III latency. The cellular chromatin insulator and boundary factor CTCF was implicated in EBV chromatin loop formation. Combining 3C and ChIP assays we found that CTCF is physically associated with OriP-Qp loop formation in type I and OriP-Cp loop formation in type III latency. Mutations in the CTCF binding site located at Qp disrupt loop formation between Qp and OriP, and lead to the activation of Cp transcription. Mutation of the CTCF binding site at Cp, as well as siRNA depletion of CTCF eliminates both OriP-associated loops, indicating that CTCF plays an integral role in loop formation. These data indicate that epigenetically stable EBV latency types adopt distinct chromatin architectures that depend on CTCF and mediate alternative promoter targeting by the OriP enhancer.

  5. Human sperm chromatin epigenetic potential: genomics, proteomics, and male infertility

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judit Castillo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The classical idea about the function of the mammalian sperm chromatin is that it serves to transmit a highly protected and transcriptionally inactive paternal genome, largely condensed by protamines, to the next generation. In addition, recent sperm chromatin genome-wide dissection studies indicate the presence of a differential distribution of the genes and repetitive sequences in the protamine-condensed and histone-condensed sperm chromatin domains, which could be potentially involved in regulatory roles after fertilization. Interestingly, recent proteomic studies have shown that sperm chromatin contains many additional proteins, in addition to the abundant histones and protamines, with specific modifications and chromatin affinity features which are also delivered to the oocyte. Both gene and protein signatures seem to be altered in infertile patients and, as such, are consistent with the potential involvement of the sperm chromatin landscape in early embryo development. This present work reviews the available information on the composition of the human sperm chromatin and its epigenetic potential, with a particular focus on recent results derived from high-throughput genomic and proteomic studies. As a complement, we provide experimental evidence for the detection of phosphorylations and acetylations in human protamine 1 using a mass spectrometry approach. The available data indicate that the sperm chromatin is much more complex than what it was previously thought, raising the possibility that it could also serve to transmit crucial paternal epigenetic information to the embryo.

  6. Human sperm chromatin epigenetic potential: genomics, proteomics, and male infertility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo, Judit; Estanyol, Josep Maria; Ballescá, Josep Lluis; Oliva, Rafael

    2015-01-01

    The classical idea about the function of the mammalian sperm chromatin is that it serves to transmit a highly protected and transcriptionally inactive paternal genome, largely condensed by protamines, to the next generation. In addition, recent sperm chromatin genome-wide dissection studies indicate the presence of a differential distribution of the genes and repetitive sequences in the protamine-condensed and histone-condensed sperm chromatin domains, which could be potentially involved in regulatory roles after fertilization. Interestingly, recent proteomic studies have shown that sperm chromatin contains many additional proteins, in addition to the abundant histones and protamines, with specific modifications and chromatin affinity features which are also delivered to the oocyte. Both gene and protein signatures seem to be altered in infertile patients and, as such, are consistent with the potential involvement of the sperm chromatin landscape in early embryo development. This present work reviews the available information on the composition of the human sperm chromatin and its epigenetic potential, with a particular focus on recent results derived from high-throughput genomic and proteomic studies. As a complement, we provide experimental evidence for the detection of phosphorylations and acetylations in human protamine 1 using a mass spectrometry approach. The available data indicate that the sperm chromatin is much more complex than what it was previously thought, raising the possibility that it could also serve to transmit crucial paternal epigenetic information to the embryo.

  7. Epigenetic Regulation of Higher Order Chromatin Conformations and Gene Transcription

    OpenAIRE

    Göndör, Anita

    2007-01-01

    Epigenetic states constitute heritable features of the chromatin to regulate when, where and how genes are expressed in the developing conceptus. A special case of epigenetic regulation, genomic imprinting, is defined as parent of origin-dependent monoallelic expression. The Igf2-H19 locus is considered as paradigm of genomic imprinting with a growth-promoting gene, Igf2, expressed paternally and a growth antagonist, H19 encoding a non-coding transcript, expressed only from the maternal allel...

  8. Epigenetic regulation and chromatin remodeling in learning and memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Somi; Kaang, Bong-Kiun

    2017-01-13

    Understanding the underlying mechanisms of memory formation and maintenance has been a major goal in the field of neuroscience. Memory formation and maintenance are tightly controlled complex processes. Among the various processes occurring at different levels, gene expression regulation is especially crucial for proper memory processing, as some genes need to be activated while some genes must be suppressed. Epigenetic regulation of the genome involves processes such as DNA methylation and histone post-translational modifications. These processes edit genomic properties or the interactions between the genome and histone cores. They then induce structural changes in the chromatin and lead to transcriptional changes of different genes. Recent studies have focused on the concept of chromatin remodeling, which consists of 3D structural changes in chromatin in relation to gene regulation, and is an important process in learning and memory. In this review, we will introduce three major epigenetic processes involved in memory regulation: DNA methylation, histone methylation and histone acetylation. We will also discuss general mechanisms of long-term memory storage and relate the epigenetic control of learning and memory to chromatin remodeling. Finally, we will discuss how epigenetic mechanisms can contribute to the pathologies of neurological disorders and cause memory-related symptoms.

  9. Epigenetic chromatin modifications in barley after mutagenic treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braszewska-Zalewska, Agnieszka; Tylikowska, Marta; Kwasniewska, Jolanta; Szymanowska-Pulka, Joanna

    2014-11-01

    In addition to their normal developmental processes, plants have evolved complex genetic and epigenetic regulatory mechanisms to cope with various environmental stresses. It has been shown that both DNA methylation and histone modifications are involved in DNA damage response to various types of stresses. In this study, we focused on the involvement of two mutagenic agents, chemical (maleic acid hydrazide; MH) and physical (gamma rays), on the global epigenetic modifications of chromatin in barley. Our results indicate that both mutagens strongly influence the level of histone methylation and acetylation. Moreover, we found that gamma irradiation, in contrast to MH, has a more robust influence on the DNA methylation level. This is the first study that brings together mutagenic treatment along with its impact at the level of epigenetic modifications examined using the immunohistochemical method.

  10. Chromatin conformation of the H19 epigenetic mark.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hark, A T; Tilghman, S M

    1998-11-01

    Genomic imprinting in mammals is an epigenetic process that results in differential expression of the two parental alleles. The tightly linked murine H19 and Igf2 genes are reciprocally imprinted: H19 is expressed from the maternal chromosome while Igf2 is expressed from the paternal chromosome. A single regulatory region in the 5' flank of the H19 gene has been implicated in silencing both genes. On the paternal chromosome, this region is heavily methylated at CpG residues, leading to repression of the H19 gene. The mechanism by which the same region in an unmethylated state on the maternal chromosome silences Igf2 is less well understood. We have probed the chromatin structure of the region by assessing its sensitivity to nuclease digestion. Two regions of nuclease hypersensitivity that are specific to the maternal chromosome were identified. These coincide with the region that is most heavily methylated on the paternal chromosome. As is the case with paternal methylation, hypersensitivity is present in all tissues surveyed, irrespective of H19 expression. We suggest that the chromatin structure of the maternal 5' flank of the H19 gene may represent an epigenetic mark involved in the silencing of Igf2.

  11. Reading the Epigenetic State of Chromatin Alters its Accessibility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Matthew D.

    The eukaryotic genome is organized into a structural polymer called chromatin. Ultimately, all access to genetic information is regulated by chromatin including access required for DNA replication, transcription, and repair. The basic repeating unit of chromatin is the nucleosome which is comprised of ˜147 bp of DNA tightly wrapped around a protein histone octamer core. The histone octamer is made up of eight proteins: two each of histones H2A, H2B, H3, and H4. Many mechanisms exist to regulate access to DNA but one of pivotal importance is the creation of unique nucleosomes through i) integration of histone variants and ii) deposition of post translational modifications (PTMs). These modifications help comprise the epigenome of a cell. Classically, the two mechanisms by which they function have been through a direct regulation of nucleosome dynamics, or through third party proteins which are able to recognize the variants or PTMs and facilitate work. The library of potential PTMs therefore forms a sort of histone code which regulates access to DNA. This thesis investigates the intersection of these mechanisms to determine whether the act of recognizing epigenetic information alters DNA accessibility. The primary method used to determine changes in DNA accessibility is though observing the effective binding affinity of a transcription factor to its target site buried within a recombinantly prepared nucleosome which has been modified to carry a PTM and to report on its wrapping state. We find different regulation depending both on the PTM we investigate and the specific PTM-binding protein. We first investigate the H3K36me3-binding protein PHF1 and find that while the PTM it recognizes, H3K36me3, does not alter DNA accessibility, the binding of its recognition domain and N-terminal domain can illicit a change of DNA accessibility of 8 +/- 2-fold. This means that 8 times less DNA binding protein is required to occupy its target site if the nucleosome is bound by PHF

  12. DAnCER: disease-annotated chromatin epigenetics resource.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turinsky, Andrei L; Turner, Brian; Borja, Rosanne C; Gleeson, James A; Heath, Michael; Pu, Shuye; Switzer, Thomas; Dong, Dong; Gong, Yunchen; On, Tuan; Xiong, Xuejian; Emili, Andrew; Greenblatt, Jack; Parkinson, John; Zhang, Zhaolei; Wodak, Shoshana J

    2011-01-01

    Chromatin modification (CM) is a set of epigenetic processes that govern many aspects of DNA replication, transcription and repair. CM is carried out by groups of physically interacting proteins, and their disruption has been linked to a number of complex human diseases. CM remains largely unexplored, however, especially in higher eukaryotes such as human. Here we present the DAnCER resource, which integrates information on genes with CM function from five model organisms, including human. Currently integrated are gene functional annotations, Pfam domain architecture, protein interaction networks and associated human diseases. Additional supporting evidence includes orthology relationships across organisms, membership in protein complexes, and information on protein 3D structure. These data are available for 962 experimentally confirmed and manually curated CM genes and for over 5000 genes with predicted CM function on the basis of orthology and domain composition. DAnCER allows visual explorations of the integrated data and flexible query capabilities using a variety of data filters. In particular, disease information and functional annotations are mapped onto the protein interaction networks, enabling the user to formulate new hypotheses on the function and disease associations of a given gene based on those of its interaction partners. DAnCER is freely available at http://wodaklab.org/dancer/.

  13. Micro- and nanoscale devices for the investigation of epigenetics and chromatin dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguilar, Carlos A.; Craighead, Harold G.

    2013-10-01

    Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is the blueprint on which life is based and transmitted, but the way in which chromatin -- a dynamic complex of nucleic acids and proteins -- is packaged and behaves in the cellular nucleus has only begun to be investigated. Epigenetic modifications sit 'on top of' the genome and affect how DNA is compacted into chromatin and transcribed into ribonucleic acid (RNA). The packaging and modifications around the genome have been shown to exert significant influence on cellular behaviour and, in turn, human development and disease. However, conventional techniques for studying epigenetic or conformational modifications of chromosomes have inherent limitations and, therefore, new methods based on micro- and nanoscale devices have been sought. Here, we review the development of these devices and explore their use in the study of DNA modifications, chromatin modifications and higher-order chromatin structures.

  14. Cross-platform detection of epigenetic modifications from extracted chromatin in leucocytes from blood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhongwu Zhou

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Chromatin contains valuable epigenetic information comprising of both DNA and post translational histone modifications. Traditionally, detection of epigenetic modifications on DNA and histone proteins requires different and elaborate preparation steps. In this study we report on a facile and unique approach for the simultaneous detection and quantification of epigenetic modifications on DNA and histone proteins in one sample preparation step. Our novel one-pot technique consists of a chromatin extraction step from whole blood using bi-functional carboxyl-functionalized magnetic nanoparticles as solid-phase absorbents. Leucocytes enrichment from blood and chromatin extracted from the leucocytes by lysis was achieved with the same carboxyl-functionalized magnetic nanoparticles. The isolated chromatin was then eluted from the magnetic nanoparticles with PBS 1×. Using the eluted chromatin as substrate, we developed a quantitative method for simultaneous detection of epigenetic modifications on DNA and histone proteins by a biotin–streptavidin mediated enzyme-based immunosorbent assay (two-step EIA on a 96-well plate. The simultaneous detection of epigenetic modifications on DNA and histone was validated by DNA-based EIA and histone-based Western blotting analysis performed separately with conventional protocols. By coupling cell separation and chromatin purification with a simple detection module, the global epigenetic information could be evaluated in less than 8 h in leucocytes from blood. Our simplified cross-platform approach can be used by most laboratories for multiplex detection, uses non-hazardous materials and could be integrated with microfabrication methods for onchip analysis.

  15. DNA Methylation and Chromatin Remodeling: The Blueprint of Cancer Epigenetics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dipanjan Bhattacharjee

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetics deals with the interactions between genes and the immediate cellular environment. These interactions go a long way in shaping up each and every person’s individuality. Further, reversibility of epigenetic interactions may offer a dynamic control over the expression of various critical genes. Thus, tweaking the epigenetic machinery may help cause or cure diseases, especially cancer. Therefore, cancer epigenetics, especially at a molecular level, needs to be scrutinised closely, as it could potentially serve as the future pharmaceutical goldmine against neoplastic diseases. However, in view of its rapidly enlarging scope of application, it has become difficult to keep abreast of scientific information coming out of various epigenetic studies directed against cancer. Using this review, we have attempted to shed light on two of the most important mechanisms implicated in cancer, that is, DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid methylation and histone modifications, and their place in cancer pathogenesis. Further, we have attempted to take stock of the new epigenetic drugs that have emerged onto the market as well as those in the pipeline that offer hope in mankind’s fight against cancer.

  16. Divide and (epigenetic) rule: Chromatin domains as functional and ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    is put on the regulatory elements such as boundary elements, that mark the limits of chromatin domains and divide the genome into ... Firstly the composition of eukaryotic genome would suggest that excess of DNA is often, not .... ated MARs and their dynamic reorganization has recently shown to be important for gene ...

  17. Chd1 remodelers maintain open chromatin and regulate the epigenetics of differentiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Persson, Jenna [Department of Biosciences and Nutrition, Center for Biosciences, Karolinska Institutet (Sweden); Ekwall, Karl, E-mail: karl.ekwall@ki.se [Department of Biosciences and Nutrition, Center for Biosciences, Karolinska Institutet (Sweden); School of Life Sciences, University College Sodertorn, NOVUM, Huddinge (Sweden)

    2010-05-01

    Eukaryotic DNA is packaged around octamers of histone proteins into nucleosomes, the basic unit of chromatin. In addition to enabling meters of DNA to fit within the confines of a nucleus, the structure of chromatin has functional implications for cell identity. Covalent chemical modifications to the DNA and to histones, histone variants, ATP-dependent chromatin remodelers, small noncoding RNAs and the level of chromatin compaction all contribute to chromosomal structure and to the activity or silencing of genes. These chromatin-level alterations are defined as epigenetic when they are heritable from mother to daughter cell. The great diversity of epigenomes that can arise from a single genome permits a single, totipotent cell to generate the hundreds of distinct cell types found in humans. Two recent studies in mouse and in fly have highlighted the importance of Chd1 chromatin remodelers for maintaining an open, active chromatin state. Based on evidence from fission yeast as a model system, we speculate that Chd1 remodelers are involved in the disassembly of nucleosomes at promoter regions, thus promoting active transcription and open chromatin. It is likely that these nucleosomes are specifically marked for disassembly by the histone variant H2A.Z.

  18. Chromatin-based epigenetics of adult subventricular zone neural stem cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriel eGonzales-Roybal

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available In specific regions of the adult mammalian brain, neural stem cells (NSCs generate new neurons throughout life. Emerging evidence indicate that chromatin-based transcriptional regulation is a key epigenetic mechanism for the life-long function of adult NSCs. In the adult mouse brain, NSCs in the subventricular zone (SVZ retain the ability to produce both neurons and glia for the life of the animal. In this review, we discuss the origin and function of SVZ NSCs as they relate to key epigenetic concepts of development and potential underlying mechanism of chromatin-based transcriptional regulation. A central point of discussion is how SVZ NSCs – which possess many characteristics of mature, non-neurogenic astrocytes – maintain a youthful ability to produce both neuronal and glial lineages. In addition to reviewing data regarding the function of chromatin-modifying factors in SVZ neurogenesis, we incorporate our growing understanding that long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs serve as an important element to chromatin-based transcriptional regulation, including that of SVZ NSCs. Discoveries regarding the epigenetic mechanisms of adult SVZ NSCs may provide key insights into fundamental principles of adult stem cell biology as well as the more complex and dynamic developmental environment of the embryonic brain.

  19. Epigenetics and chromatin dynamics: a review and a paradigm for functional disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ordog, Tamas; Syed, Sabriya; Hayashi, Yujiro; Asuzu, David T.

    2012-01-01

    Background Motility and functional gastrointestinal disorders have high prevalence in the community, cause significant morbidity and represent a major health care burden. Despite major advances in our understanding of the cellular and molecular basis of gastrointestinal neuromuscular functions, many of these diseases still defy mechanistic explanations. The biopsychosocial model underlying the current classification of functional gastrointestinal disorders recognizes and integrates the pathogenetic role of genetic, environmental and psychosocial factors but has not been associated with specific molecular mechanisms. Purpose Here we propose that this integrative function is encoded in the chromatin composed of the DNA and associated histone and nonhistone proteins and noncoding RNA. By establishing epigenetically heritable “molecular memories” of past stimuli including environmental challenges, the chromatin determines an individual’s responses to future insults and translates them into high-order outputs such as symptoms and illness behavior. Thus, surveying epigenetic signatures throughout the genome of affected cells in individual patients may make it possible to better understand and ultimately control the phenomena described by the biopsychosocial model. In this review we provide a high-level but comprehensive description of the concepts and mechanisms underlying epigenetics and chromatin dynamics, describe the mechanisms whereby the environment can alter the epigenome and identify aspects of functional gastrointestinal and motility disorders where epigenetic mechanisms are most likely to play important roles. PMID:23095056

  20. Chromatin structure and epigenetics of tumour cells: A review

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bártová, Eva; Krejčí, Jana; Hájek, R.; Harničarová, Andrea; Kozubek, Stanislav

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 9, č. 1 (2009), s. 51-61 ISSN 1871-529X R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) 1QS500040508; GA ČR(CZ) GA204/06/0978 Grant - others:GA MŠk(CZ) LC06027; GA MŠk(CZ) LC535 Program:LC; LC Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50040507; CEZ:AV0Z50040702 Keywords : tumour cells * chromatin * radiation Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics

  1. Bookmarking promoters in mitotic chromatin: poly(ADP-ribose)polymerase-1 as an epigenetic mark.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lodhi, Niraj; Kossenkov, Andrew V; Tulin, Alexei V

    2014-06-01

    Epigenetics are the heritable changes in gene expression or cellular phenotype caused by mechanisms other than changes in the underlying DNA sequence. After mitosis, it is thought that bookmarking transcription factors remain at promoters, regulating which genes become active and which remain silent. Herein, we demonstrate that poly(ADP-ribose)polymerase-1 (PARP-1) is a genome-wide epigenetic memory mark in mitotic chromatin, and we further show that the presence of PARP-1 is absolutely crucial for reactivation of transcription after mitosis. Based on these findings, a novel molecular model of epigenetic memory transmission through the cell cycle is proposed. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  2. Epigenetic Heterogeneity of B-Cell Lymphoma: DNA Methylation, Gene Expression and Chromatin States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lydia Hopp

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Mature B-cell lymphoma is a clinically and biologically highly diverse disease. Its diagnosis and prognosis is a challenge due to its molecular heterogeneity and diverse regimes of biological dysfunctions, which are partly driven by epigenetic mechanisms. We here present an integrative analysis of DNA methylation and gene expression data of several lymphoma subtypes. Our study confirms previous results about the role of stemness genes during development and maturation of B-cells and their dysfunction in lymphoma locking in more proliferative or immune-reactive states referring to B-cell functionalities in the dark and light zone of the germinal center and also in plasma cells. These dysfunctions are governed by widespread epigenetic effects altering the promoter methylation of the involved genes, their activity status as moderated by histone modifications and also by chromatin remodeling. We identified four groups of genes showing characteristic expression and methylation signatures among Burkitt’s lymphoma, diffuse large B cell lymphoma, follicular lymphoma and multiple myeloma. These signatures are associated with epigenetic effects such as remodeling from transcriptionally inactive into active chromatin states, differential promoter methylation and the enrichment of targets of transcription factors such as EZH2 and SUZ12.

  3. Krebs cycle dysfunction shapes epigenetic landscape of chromatin: novel insights into mitochondrial regulation of aging process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salminen, Antero; Kaarniranta, Kai; Hiltunen, Mikko; Kauppinen, Anu

    2014-07-01

    Although there is a substantial literature that mitochondria have a crucial role in the aging process, the mechanism has remained elusive. The role of reactive oxygen species, mitochondrial DNA injuries, and a decline in mitochondrial quality control has been proposed. Emerging studies have demonstrated that Krebs cycle intermediates, 2-oxoglutarate (also known as α-ketoglutarate), succinate and fumarate, can regulate the level of DNA and histone methylation. Moreover, citrate, also a Krebs cycle metabolite, can enhance histone acetylation. Genome-wide screening studies have revealed that the aging process is linked to significant epigenetic changes in the chromatin landscape, e.g. global demethylation of DNA and histones and increase in histone acetylation. Interestingly, recent studies have revealed that the demethylases of DNA (TET1-3) and histone lysines (KDM2-7) are members of 2-oxoglutarate-dependent dioxygenases (2-OGDO). The 2-OGDO enzymes are activated by oxygen, iron and the major Krebs cycle intermediate, 2-oxoglutarate, whereas they are inhibited by succinate and fumarate. Considering the endosymbiont origin of mitochondria, it is not surprising that Krebs cycle metabolites can control the gene expression of host cell by modifying the epigenetic landscape of chromatin. It seems that age-related disturbances in mitochondrial metabolism can induce epigenetic reprogramming, which promotes the appearance of senescent phenotype and degenerative diseases. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Breaking an epigenetic chromatin switch: curious features of hysteresis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae telomeric silencing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vijayalakshmi H Nagaraj

    Full Text Available In addition to gene network switches, local epigenetic modifications to DNA and histones play an important role in all-or-none cellular decision-making. Here, we study the dynamical design of a well-characterized epigenetic chromatin switch: the yeast SIR system, in order to understand the origin of the stability of epigenetic states. We study hysteresis in this system by perturbing it with a histone deacetylase inhibitor. We find that SIR silencing has many characteristics of a non-linear bistable system, as observed in conventional genetic switches, which are based on activities of a few promoters affecting each other through the abundance of their gene products. Quite remarkably, our experiments in yeast telomeric silencing show a very distinctive pattern when it comes to the transition from bistability to monostability. In particular, the loss of the stable silenced state, upon increasing the inhibitor concentration, does not seem to show the expected saddle node behavior, instead looking like a supercritical pitchfork bifurcation. In other words, the 'off' state merges with the 'on' state at a threshold concentration leading to a single state, as opposed to the two states remaining distinct up to the threshold and exhibiting a discontinuous jump from the 'off' to the 'on' state. We argue that this is an inevitable consequence of silenced and active regions coexisting with dynamic domain boundaries. The experimental observations in our study therefore have broad implications for the understanding of chromatin silencing in yeast and beyond.

  5. LINE retrotransposon RNA is an essential structural and functional epigenetic component of a core neocentromeric chromatin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anderly C Chueh

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available We have previously identified and characterized the phenomenon of ectopic human centromeres, known as neocentromeres. Human neocentromeres form epigenetically at euchromatic chromosomal sites and are structurally and functionally similar to normal human centromeres. Recent studies have indicated that neocentromere formation provides a major mechanism for centromere repositioning, karyotype evolution, and speciation. Using a marker chromosome mardel(10 containing a neocentromere formed at the normal chromosomal 10q25 region, we have previously mapped a 330-kb CENP-A-binding domain and described an increased prevalence of L1 retrotransposons in the underlying DNA sequences of the CENP-A-binding clusters. Here, we investigated the potential role of the L1 retrotransposons in the regulation of neocentromere activity. Determination of the transcriptional activity of a panel of full-length L1s (FL-L1s across a 6-Mb region spanning the 10q25 neocentromere chromatin identified one of the FL-L1 retrotransposons, designated FL-L1b and residing centrally within the CENP-A-binding clusters, to be transcriptionally active. We demonstrated the direct incorporation of the FL-L1b RNA transcripts into the CENP-A-associated chromatin. RNAi-mediated knockdown of the FL-L1b RNA transcripts led to a reduction in CENP-A binding and an impaired mitotic function of the 10q25 neocentromere. These results indicate that LINE retrotransposon RNA is a previously undescribed essential structural and functional component of the neocentromeric chromatin and that retrotransposable elements may serve as a critical epigenetic determinant in the chromatin remodelling events leading to neocentromere formation.

  6. Molecular and Biochemical Methods Useful for the Epigenetic Characterization of Chromatin-Associated Proteins in Bivalve Molluscs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ciro Rivera-Casas

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Bivalve molluscs constitute a ubiquitous taxonomic group playing key functions in virtually all ecosystems, and encompassing critical commercial relevance. Along with a sessile and filter-feeding lifestyle in most cases, these characteristics make bivalves model sentinel organisms routinely used for environmental monitoring studies in aquatic habitats. The study of epigenetic mechanisms linking environmental exposure and specific physiological responses (i.e., environmental epigenetics stands out as a very innovative monitoring strategy, given the role of epigenetic modifications in acclimatization and adaptation. Furthermore, the heritable nature of many of those modifications constitutes a very promising avenue to explore the applicability of epigenetic conditioning and selection in management and restoration strategies. Chromatin provides a framework for the study of environmental epigenetic responses. Unfortunately, chromatin and epigenetic information are very limited in most non-traditional model organisms and even completely lacking in most environmentally and ecologically relevant organisms. The present work aims to provide a comprehensive and reproducible experimental workflow for the study of bivalve chromatin. First, a series of guidelines for the molecular isolation of genes encoding chromatin-associated proteins is provided, including information on primers suitable for conventional PCR, Rapid Amplification of cDNA Ends (RACE, genome walking and quantitative PCR (qPCR experiments. This section is followed by the description of methods specifically developed for the analysis of histone and SNBP proteins in different bivalve tissues, including protein extraction, purification, separation and immunodetection. Lastly, information about available antibodies, their specificity and performance is also provided. The tools and protocols described here complement current epigenetic analyses (usually limited to DNA methylation by incorporating

  7. Skewed Epigenetics: An Alternative Therapeutic Option for Diabetes Complications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriele Togliatto

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Vascular complications are major causes of morbidity and mortality in type 2 diabetes patients. Mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS generation and a lack of efficient antioxidant machinery, a result of hyperglycaemia, mainly contribute to this problem. Although advances in therapy have significantly reduced both morbidity and mortality in diabetic individuals, diabetes-associated vascular complications are still one of the most challenging health problems worldwide. New healing options are urgently needed as current therapeutics are failing to improve long-term outcomes. Particular effort has recently been devoted to understanding the functional relationship between chromatin structure regulation and the persistent change in gene expression which is driven by hyperglycaemia and which accounts for long-lasting diabetic complications. A detailed investigation into epigenetic chromatin modifications in type 2 diabetes is underway. This will be particularly useful in the design of mechanism-based therapeutics which interfere with long-lasting activating epigenetics and improve patient outcomes. We herein provide an overview of the most relevant mechanisms that account for hyperglycaemia-induced changes in chromatin structure; the most relevant mechanism is called “metabolic memory.”

  8. Low Dose Radiation-Induced Genome and Epigenome Instability Symposium and Epigenetic Mechanisms, DNA Repair, and Chromatin Symposium at the EMS 2008 Annual Meeting - October 2008

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morgan, William F; Kovalchuk, Olga; Dolinoy, Dana C; Dubrova, Yuri E; Coleman, Matthew A; Schär, Primo; Pogribny, Igor; Hendzel, Michael

    2010-02-19

    The Low Dose Radiation Symposium thoughtfully addressed ionizing radiation non-mutational but transmissable alterations in surviving cells. Deregulation of epigenetic processes has been strongly implicated in carcinogenesis, and there is increasing realization that a significant fraction of non-targeted and adaptive mechanisms in response to ionizing radiation are likely to be epigenetic in nature. Much remains to be learned about how chromatin and epigenetic regulators affect responses to low doses of radiation, and how low dose radiation impacts other epigenetic processes. The Epigenetic Mechanisms Symposium focused on on epigenetic mechanisms and their interplay with DNA repair and chromatin changes. Addressing the fact that the most well understood mediators of epigenetic regulation are histone modifications and DNA methylation. Low levels of radiation can lead to changes in the methylation status of certain gene promoters and the expression of DNA methyltransferases, However, epigenetic regulation can also involve changes in higher order chromosome structure.

  9. Epigenetic Regulation of Centromere Chromatin Stability by Dietary and Environmental Factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-Saavedra, Diego; Strakovsky, Rita S; Ostrosky-Wegman, Patricia; Pan, Yuan-Xiang

    2017-11-01

    The centromere is a genomic locus required for the segregation of the chromosomes during cell division. This chromosomal region together with pericentromeres has been found to be susceptible to damage, and thus the perturbation of the centromere could lead to the development of aneuploidic events. Metabolic abnormalities that underlie the generation of cancer include inflammation, oxidative stress, cell cycle deregulation, and numerous others. The micronucleus assay, an early clinical marker of cancer, has been shown to provide a reliable measure of genotoxic damage that may signal cancer initiation. In the current review, we will discuss the events that lead to micronucleus formation and centromeric and pericentromeric chromatin instability, as well transcripts emanating from these regions, which were previously thought to be inactive. Studies were selected in PubMed if they reported the effects of nutritional status (macro- and micronutrients) or environmental toxicant exposure on micronucleus frequency or any other chromosomal abnormality in humans, animals, or cell models. Mounting evidence from epidemiologic, environmental, and nutritional studies provides a novel perspective on the origination of aneuploidic events. Although substantial evidence exists describing the role that nutritional status and environmental toxicants have on the generation of micronuclei and other nuclear aberrations, limited information is available to describe the importance of macro- and micronutrients on centromeric and pericentromeric chromatin stability. Moving forward, studies that specifically address the direct link between nutritional status, excess, or deficiency and the epigenetic regulation of the centromere will provide much needed insight into the nutritional and environmental regulation of this chromosomal region and the initiation of aneuploidy. © 2017 American Society for Nutrition.

  10. Gene expression profiling of epigenetic chromatin modification enzymes and histone marks by cigarette smoke: implications for COPD and lung cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundar, Isaac K; Rahman, Irfan

    2016-12-01

    Chromatin-modifying enzymes mediate DNA methylation and histone modifications on recruitment to specific target gene loci in response to various stimuli. The key enzymes that regulate chromatin accessibility for maintenance of modifications in DNA and histones, and for modulation of gene expression patterns in response to cigarette smoke (CS), are not known. We hypothesize that CS exposure alters the gene expression patterns of chromatin-modifying enzymes, which then affects multiple downstream pathways involved in the response to CS. We have, therefore, analyzed chromatin-modifying enzyme profiles and validated by quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR). We also performed immunoblot analysis of targeted histone marks in C57BL/6J mice exposed to acute and subchronic CS, and of lungs from nonsmokers, smokers, and patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). We found a significant increase in expression of several chromatin modification enzymes, including DNA methyltransferases, histone acetyltransferases, histone methyltransferases, and SET domain proteins, histone kinases, and ubiquitinases. Our qPCR validation data revealed a significant downregulation of Dnmt1, Dnmt3a, Dnmt3b, Hdac2, Hdac4, Hat1, Prmt1, and Aurkb We identified targeted chromatin histone marks (H3K56ac and H4K12ac), which are induced by CS. Thus CS-induced genotoxic stress differentially affects the expression of epigenetic modulators that regulate transcription of target genes via DNA methylation and site-specific histone modifications. This may have implications in devising epigenetic-based therapies for COPD and lung cancer. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  11. Mapping of histone modifications in episomal HBV cccDNA uncovers an unusual chromatin organization amenable to epigenetic manipulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tropberger, Philipp; Mercier, Alexandre; Robinson, Margaret; Zhong, Weidong; Ganem, Don E.; Holdorf, Meghan

    2015-01-01

    Chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection affects 240 million people worldwide and is a major risk factor for liver failure and hepatocellular carcinoma. Current antiviral therapy inhibits cytoplasmic HBV genomic replication, but is not curative because it does not directly affect nuclear HBV closed circular DNA (cccDNA), the genomic form that templates viral transcription and sustains viral persistence. Novel approaches that directly target cccDNA regulation would therefore be highly desirable. cccDNA is assembled with cellular histone proteins into chromatin, but little is known about the regulation of HBV chromatin by histone posttranslational modifications (PTMs). Here, using a new cccDNA ChIP-Seq approach, we report, to our knowledge, the first genome-wide maps of PTMs in cccDNA-containing chromatin from de novo infected HepG2 cells, primary human hepatocytes, and from HBV-infected liver tissue. We find high levels of PTMs associated with active transcription enriched at specific sites within the HBV genome and, surprisingly, very low levels of PTMs linked to transcriptional repression even at silent HBV promoters. We show that transcription and active PTMs in HBV chromatin are reduced by the activation of an innate immunity pathway, and that this effect can be recapitulated with a small molecule epigenetic modifying agent, opening the possibility that chromatin-based regulation of cccDNA transcription could be a new therapeutic approach to chronic HBV infection. PMID:26438841

  12. A Method to Study the Epigenetic Chromatin States of Rare Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cells; MiniChIP–Chip

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weishaupt Holger

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Dynamic chromatin structure is a fundamental property of gene transcriptional regulation, and has emerged as a critical modulator of physiological processes during cellular differentiation and development. Analysis of chromatin structure using molecular biology and biochemical assays in rare somatic stem and progenitor cells is key for understanding these processes but poses a great challenge because of their reliance on millions of cells. Through the development of a miniaturized genome-scale chromatin immunoprecipitation method (miniChIP–chip, we have documented the genome-wide chromatin states of low abundant populations that comprise hematopoietic stem cells and immediate progeny residing in murine bone marrow. In this report, we describe the miniChIP methodology that can be used for increasing an understanding of the epigenetic mechanisms underlying hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell function. Application of this method will reveal the contribution of dynamic chromatin structure in regulating the function of other somatic stem cell populations, and how this process becomes perturbed in pathological conditions. Additional file 1 Click here for file

  13. Epigenetic modifications and chromatin loop organization explain the different expression profiles of the Tbrg4, WAP and Ramp3 genes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Montazer-Torbati, Mohammad Bagher; Hue-Beauvais, Cathy; Droineau, Stephanie; Ballester, Maria; Coant, Nicolas; Aujean, Etienne; Petitbarat, Marie; Rijnkels, Monique; Devinoy, Eve

    2008-01-01

    Whey Acidic Protein (WAP) gene expression is specific to the mammary gland and regulated by lactogenic hormones to peak during lactation. It differs markedly from the more constitutive expression of the two flanking genes, Ramp3 and Tbrg4. Our results show that the tight regulation of WAP gene expression parallels variations in the chromatin structure and DNA methylation profile throughout the Ramp3-WAP-Tbrg4 locus. Three Matrix Attachment Regions (MAR) have been predicted in this locus. Two of them are located between regions exhibiting open and closed chromatin structures in the liver. The third, located around the transcription start site of the Tbrg4 gene, interacts with topoisomerase II in HC11 mouse mammary cells, and in these cells anchors the chromatin loop to the nuclear matrix. Furthermore, if lactogenic hormones are present in these cells, the chromatin loop surrounding the WAP gene is more tightly attached to the nuclear structure, as observed after a high salt treatment of the nuclei and the formation of nuclear halos. Taken together, our results point to a combination of several epigenetic events that may explain the differential expression pattern of the WAP locus in relation to tissue and developmental stages

  14. Neuron-specific chromatin remodeling: a missing link in epigenetic mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity, memory, and intellectual disability disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogel-Ciernia, Annie; Wood, Marcelo A

    2014-05-01

    Long-term memory formation requires the coordinated regulation of gene expression. Until recently nucleosome remodeling, one of the major epigenetic mechanisms for controlling gene expression, had been largely unexplored in the field of neuroscience. Nucleosome remodeling is carried out by chromatin remodeling complexes (CRCs) that interact with DNA and histones to physically alter chromatin structure and ultimately regulate gene expression. Human exome sequencing and gene wide association studies have linked mutations in CRC subunits to intellectual disability disorders, autism spectrum disorder and schizophrenia. However, how mutations in CRC subunits were related to human cognitive disorders was unknown. There appears to be both developmental and adult specific roles for the neuron specific CRC nBAF (neuronal Brg1/hBrm Associated Factor). nBAF regulates gene expression required for dendritic arborization during development, and in the adult, contributes to long-term potentiation, a form of synaptic plasticity, and long-term memory. We propose that the nBAF complex is a novel epigenetic mechanism for regulating transcription required for long-lasting forms of synaptic plasticity and memory processes and that impaired nBAF function may result in human cognitive disorders. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Chromatin remodelling and epigenetic state regulation by non-coding RNAs in the diseased heart

    OpenAIRE

    F. De Majo; M. Calore

    2018-01-01

    Epigenetics refers to all the changes in phenotype and gene expression which are not due to alterations in the DNA sequence. These mechanisms have a pivotal role not only in the development but also in the maintenance during adulthood of a physiological phenotype of the heart. Because of the crucial role of epigenetic modifications, their alteration can lead to the arise of pathological conditions.Heart failure affects an estimated 23 million people worldwide and leads to substantial numbers ...

  16. A CHROMATIN MODIFYING ENZYME, SDG8, IS REQUIRED FOR MORPHOLOGICAL, GENE EXPRESSION, AND EPIGENETIC RESPONSES TO MECHANICAL STIMULATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Ian Cazzonelli

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Thigmomorphogenesis is viewed as being a response process of acclimation to short repetitive bursts of mechanical stimulation or touch. The underlying molecular mechanisms that coordinate changes in how touch signals lead to long-term morphological changes are enigmatic. Touch responsive gene expression is rapid and transient, and no transcription factor or DNA regulatory motif has been reported that could confer a genome wide mechanical stimulus. We report here on a chromatin modifying enzyme, SDG8/ASHH2, which can regulate the expression of many touch responsive genes identified in Arabidopsis. SDG8 is required for the permissive expression of touch induced genes; and the loss of function of sdg8 perturbs the maximum levels of induction on selected touch gene targets. SDG8 is required to maintain permissive H3K4 trimethylation marks surrounding the Arabidopsis touch-inducible gene TOUCH 3 (TCH3, which encodes a calmodulin-like protein (CML12. The gene neighbouring was also slightly down regulated, revealing a new target for SDG8 mediated chromatin modification. Finally, sdg8 mutants show perturbed morphological response to wind-agitated mechanical stimuli, implicating an epigenetic memory-forming process in the acclimation response of thigmomorphogenesis.

  17. Epigenetics, chromatin and genome organization: recent advances from the ENCODE project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siggens, L; Ekwall, K

    2014-09-01

    The organization of the genome into functional units, such as enhancers and active or repressed promoters, is associated with distinct patterns of DNA and histone modifications. The Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) project has advanced our understanding of the principles of genome, epigenome and chromatin organization, identifying hundreds of thousands of potential regulatory regions and transcription factor binding sites. Part of the ENCODE consortium, GENCODE, has annotated the human genome with novel transcripts including new noncoding RNAs and pseudogenes, highlighting transcriptional complexity. Many disease variants identified in genome-wide association studies are located within putative enhancer regions defined by the ENCODE project. Understanding the principles of chromatin and epigenome organization will help to identify new disease mechanisms, biomarkers and drug targets, particularly as ongoing epigenome mapping projects generate data for primary human cell types that play important roles in disease. © 2014 The Association for the Publication of the Journal of Internal Medicine.

  18. Heterogeneity of chromatin modifications in testicular spermatocytic seminoma point toward an epigenetically unstable phenotype

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, Dina Graae; Mlynarska, Olga; Nielsen, John E

    2012-01-01

    in a series of 36 SS samples. We assessed by immunohistochemistry tumor DNA methylation levels, the expression of methyltransferases DNMT3A, DNMT3B and DNMT3L as well as levels of histone modifications H3K9me2, H3K27me3, H3K4me1, H3K4me2/3, H3K9ac, and H2A.Z. We did not identify any epigenetic marks...

  19. A conserved role for human Nup98 in altering chromatin structure and promoting epigenetic transcriptional memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William H Light

    Full Text Available The interaction of nuclear pore proteins (Nups with active genes can promote their transcription. In yeast, some inducible genes interact with the nuclear pore complex both when active and for several generations after being repressed, a phenomenon called epigenetic transcriptional memory. This interaction promotes future reactivation and requires Nup100, a homologue of human Nup98. A similar phenomenon occurs in human cells; for at least four generations after treatment with interferon gamma (IFN-γ, many IFN-γ-inducible genes are induced more rapidly and more strongly than in cells that have not previously been exposed to IFN-γ. In both yeast and human cells, the recently expressed promoters of genes with memory exhibit persistent dimethylation of histone H3 lysine 4 (H3K4me2 and physically interact with Nups and a poised form of RNA polymerase II. However, in human cells, unlike yeast, these interactions occur in the nucleoplasm. In human cells transiently depleted of Nup98 or yeast cells lacking Nup100, transcriptional memory is lost; RNA polymerase II does not remain associated with promoters, H3K4me2 is lost, and the rate of transcriptional reactivation is reduced. These results suggest that Nup100/Nup98 binding to recently expressed promoters plays a conserved role in promoting epigenetic transcriptional memory.

  20. A conserved role for human Nup98 in altering chromatin structure and promoting epigenetic transcriptional memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Light, William H; Freaney, Jonathan; Sood, Varun; Thompson, Abbey; D'Urso, Agustina; Horvath, Curt M; Brickner, Jason H

    2013-01-01

    The interaction of nuclear pore proteins (Nups) with active genes can promote their transcription. In yeast, some inducible genes interact with the nuclear pore complex both when active and for several generations after being repressed, a phenomenon called epigenetic transcriptional memory. This interaction promotes future reactivation and requires Nup100, a homologue of human Nup98. A similar phenomenon occurs in human cells; for at least four generations after treatment with interferon gamma (IFN-γ), many IFN-γ-inducible genes are induced more rapidly and more strongly than in cells that have not previously been exposed to IFN-γ. In both yeast and human cells, the recently expressed promoters of genes with memory exhibit persistent dimethylation of histone H3 lysine 4 (H3K4me2) and physically interact with Nups and a poised form of RNA polymerase II. However, in human cells, unlike yeast, these interactions occur in the nucleoplasm. In human cells transiently depleted of Nup98 or yeast cells lacking Nup100, transcriptional memory is lost; RNA polymerase II does not remain associated with promoters, H3K4me2 is lost, and the rate of transcriptional reactivation is reduced. These results suggest that Nup100/Nup98 binding to recently expressed promoters plays a conserved role in promoting epigenetic transcriptional memory.

  1. Epigenetic crosstalk: Pharmacological inhibition of HDACs can rescue defective synaptic morphology and neurotransmission phenotypes associated with loss of the chromatin reader Kismet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latcheva, Nina K; Viveiros, Jennifer M; Waddell, Edward A; Nguyen, Phuong T T; Liebl, Faith L W; Marenda, Daniel R

    2018-03-01

    We are beginning to appreciate the complex mechanisms by which epigenetic proteins control chromatin dynamics to tightly regulate normal development. However, the interaction between these proteins, particularly in the context of neuronal function, remains poorly understood. Here, we demonstrate that the activity of histone deacetylases (HDACs) opposes that of a chromatin remodeling enzyme at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction (NMJ). Pharmacological inhibition of HDAC function reverses loss of function phenotypes associated with Kismet, a chromodomain helicase DNA-binding (CHD) protein. Inhibition of HDACs suppresses motor deficits, overgrowth of the NMJ, and defective neurotransmission associated with loss of Kismet. We hypothesize that Kismet and HDACs may converge on a similar set of target genes in the nervous system. Our results provide further understanding into the complex interactions between epigenetic protein function in vivo. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Brd2 gene disruption causes ‘metabolically healthy’ obesity: Epigenetic and chromatin-based mechanisms that uncouple obesity from Type 2 diabetes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fangnian; Deeney, Jude T.; Denis, Gerald V.

    2014-01-01

    Disturbed body energy balance can lead to obesity and obesity-driven diseases such as Type 2 diabetes, which have reached an epidemic level. Evidence indicates that obesity induced inflammation is a major cause of insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes. Environmental factors, such as nutrients, affect body energy balance through epigenetic or chromatin-based mechanisms. As a bromodomain and external domain family transcription regulator, Brd2 regulates expression of many genes through interpretation of chromatin codes, and participates in the regulation of body energy balance and immune function. In the severely obese state, Brd2 knockdown in mice prevented obesity-induced inflammatory responses, protected animals from Type 2 diabetes, and thus uncoupled obesity from diabetes. Brd2 provides an important model for investigation of the function of transcription regulators and the development of obesity and diabetes; it also provides a possible target to treat obesity and diabetes through modulation of the function of a chromatin code reader. PMID:23374712

  3. Exploiting epigenetic vulnerabilities for cancer therapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mair, Barbara; Kubicek, Stefan; Nijman, Sebastian M B

    2014-03-01

    Epigenetic deregulation is a hallmark of cancer, and there has been increasing interest in therapeutics that target chromatin-modifying enzymes and other epigenetic regulators. The rationale for applying epigenetic drugs to treat cancer is twofold. First, epigenetic changes are reversible, and drugs could therefore be used to restore the normal (healthy) epigenetic landscape. However, it is unclear whether drugs can faithfully restore the precancerous epigenetic state. Second, chromatin regulators are often mutated in cancer, making them attractive drug targets. However, in most instances it is unknown whether cancer cells are addicted to these mutated chromatin proteins, or whether their mutation merely results in epigenetic instability conducive to the selection of secondary aberrations. An alternative incentive for targeting chromatin regulators is the exploitation of cancer-specific vulnerabilities, including synthetic lethality, caused by epigenetic deregulation. We review evidence for the hypothesis that mechanisms other than oncogene addiction are a basis for the application of epigenetic drugs, and propose future research directions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Chromatin is wonderful stuff.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Driel, R.

    2007-01-01

    Chromatin molecules have properties that set them aside from all other biomacromolecules in the cell. (i) Chromosomes, which are single chromatin molecules, are the largest macromolecules in eukaryotic cells. (ii) Chromatin molecules carry the cell's genetic and epigenetic information and all

  5. The detailed 3D multi-loop aggregate/rosette chromatin architecture and functional dynamic organization of the human and mouse genomes. - Epigenetics & Chromatin Version

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    T.A. Knoch (Tobias); M. Wachsmuth (Malte); F.N. Kepper (Nick); M. Lesnussa (Michael); A. Abuseiris (Anis); Ali Imam, A.M.; P. Kolovos (Petros); J. Zuin (Jessica); C. Kockx (Christel); R.W.W. Brouwer (Rutger); H.J.G. van de Werken (Harmen); W.F.J. van IJcken (Wilfred); K.S. Wendt (Kerstin); F.G. Grosveld (Frank)

    2016-01-01

    textabstractBackground: The dynamic three-dimensional chromatin architecture of genomes and its co-evolutionary connection to its function - the storage, expression, and replication of genetic information - is still one of the central issues in biology. Here, we describe the much debated 3D

  6. The selector gene Pax7 dictates alternate pituitary cell fates through its pioneer action on chromatin remodeling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Budry, L.; Balsalobre, A.; Gauthier, Y.; Khetchoumian, K.; L'Honore, A.; Vallette-Kasic, S.; Brue, T; Figarella-Branger, D.; Meij, B.P.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/164045805; Drouin, J.

    2012-01-01

    Genes Dev. 2012 Oct 15;26(20):2299-310. doi: 10.1101/gad.200436.112. The selector gene Pax7 dictates alternate pituitary cell fates through its pioneer action on chromatin remodeling. Budry L, Balsalobre A, Gauthier Y, Khetchoumian K, L'honoré A, Vallette S, Brue T, Figarella-Branger D, Meij B,

  7. Consolidation of the cancer genome into domains of repressive chromatin by long-range epigenetic silencing (LRES) reduces transcriptional plasticity.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Coolen, M.W.; Stirzaker, C.; Song, J.Z.; Statham, A.L.; Kassir, Z.; Moreno, C.S.; Young, A.N.; Varma, V.; Speed, T.P.; Cowley, M.; Lacaze, P.; Kaplan, W.; Robinson, M.D.; Clark, S. J.

    2010-01-01

    Silencing of individual genes can occur by genetic and epigenetic processes during carcinogenesis, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. By creating an integrated prostate cancer epigenome map using tiling arrays, we show that contiguous regions of gene suppression commonly occur through

  8. Heritable epigenetic mutation of a transposon-flanked Arabidopsis gene due to lack of the chromatin-remodeling factor DDM1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saze, Hidetoshi; Kakutani, Tetsuji

    2007-08-08

    Epigenetically silent transposons and repeats constitute a substantial proportion of eukaryotic genomes, but their impact on cellular gene function remains largely unexplored. In Arabidopsis, transposons are silenced by DNA methylation, and this methylation is often abolished by mutations in a chromatin-remodeling gene DDM1 (DECREASE IN DNA METHYLATION 1). The ddm1 mutation induces various types of developmental abnormalities through de-repression of transposons and repeats. Here, we report a novel mechanism for a ddm1-induced syndrome, called bonsai (bns). We identified the gene responsible for the bns phenotypes by genetic linkage analysis and subsequent transcriptional analysis. The bns phenotypes are due to silencing of a putative Anaphase-Promoting Complex (APC) 13 gene. The BNS gene silencing was associated with DNA hypermethylation, which is in contrast to the ddm1-induced hypomethylation in the other genomic regions. This paradoxical BNS hypermethylation was reproducibly induced during self-pollination of the ddm1 mutant, and it was mediated by a long interspersed nuclear element (LINE) retrotransposon flanking the BNS gene. We discuss possible molecular mechanisms and the evolutionary implications of transposon-mediated epigenetic changes in the BNS locus.

  9. Epigenetic silencing of the p16(INK4a) tumor suppressor is associated with loss of CTCF binding and a chromatin boundary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witcher, Michael; Emerson, Beverly M

    2009-05-15

    The p16(INK4a) tumor suppressor gene is a frequent target of epigenetic inactivation in human cancers, which is an early event in breast carcinogenesis. We describe the existence of a chromatin boundary upstream of the p16 gene that is lost when this gene is aberrantly silenced. We show that the multifunctional protein CTCF associates in the vicinity of this boundary and absence of binding strongly coincides with p16 silencing in multiple types of cancer cells. CTCF binding also correlates with RASSF1A and CDH1 gene activation, and CTCF interaction is absent when these genes are methylated and silenced. Interestingly, defective poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation of CTCF and dissociation from the molecular chaperone Nucleolin occur in p16-silenced cells, abrogating its proper function. Thus, destabilization of specific chromosomal boundaries through aberrant crosstalk between CTCF, poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation, and DNA methylation may be a general mechanism to inactivate tumor suppressor genes and initiate tumorigenesis in numerous forms of human cancers.

  10. Epigenetic dynamics across the cell cycle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kheir, Tony Bou; Lund, Anders H.

    2010-01-01

    Progression of the mammalian cell cycle depends on correct timing and co-ordination of a series of events, which are managed by the cellular transcriptional machinery and epigenetic mechanisms governing genome accessibility. Epigenetic chromatin modifications are dynamic across the cell cycle...... a correct inheritance of epigenetic chromatin modifications to daughter cells. In this chapter, we summarize the current knowledge on the dynamics of epigenetic chromatin modifications during progression of the cell cycle....

  11. Noncoding transcription by alternative rna polymerases dynamically regulates an auxin-driven chromatin loop

    KAUST Repository

    Ariel, Federico D.

    2014-08-01

    The eukaryotic epigenome is shaped by the genome topology in three-dimensional space. Dynamic reversible variations in this epigenome structure directly influence the transcriptional responses to developmental cues. Here, we show that the Arabidopsis long intergenic noncoding RNA (lincRNA) APOLO is transcribed by RNA polymerases II and V in response to auxin, a phytohormone controlling numerous facets of plant development. This dual APOLO transcription regulates the formation of a chromatin loop encompassing the promoter of its neighboring gene PID, a key regulator of polar auxin transport. Altering APOLO expression affects chromatin loop formation, whereas RNA-dependent DNA methylation, active DNA demethylation, and Polycomb complexes control loop dynamics. This dynamic chromatin topology determines PID expression patterns. Hence, the dual transcription of a lincRNA influences local chromatin topology and directs dynamic auxin-controlled developmental outputs on neighboring genes. This mechanism likely underscores the adaptive success of plants in diverse environments and may be widespread in eukaryotes. © 2014 Elsevier Inc.

  12. The C-terminal domain of Brd2 is important for chromatin interaction and regulation of transcription and alternative splicing

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hnilicová, Jarmila; Hozeifi, Samira; Stejskalová, Eva; Dušková, Eva; Poser, I.; Humpolíčková, Jana; Hof, Martin; Staněk, David

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 24, č. 22 (2013), s. 3557-3568 ISSN 1059-1524 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR KAN200520801; GA ČR GAP305/10/0424; GA ČR GBP208/12/G016; GA ČR(CZ) GBP305/12/G034 Institutional support: RVO:68378050 ; RVO:61388955 Keywords : Brd2 * alternative splicing * chromatin Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology; CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry (UFCH-W) Impact factor: 4.548, year: 2013

  13. Whole Genome Epigenetics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Carmell, Michelle A; Hannon, Gregory J

    2005-01-01

    .... However, this is only part of the picture. Increasingly, we are learning that epigenetic changes, that is, changes in chromatin structure, are critically important in regulating cellular gene expression...

  14. Whole Genome Epigenetics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Carmell, Michelle A; Hannon, Gregory J

    2004-01-01

    .... However, this is only part of the picture. Increasingly, we are learning that epigenetic changes, that is, changes in chromatin structure, are critically important in regulating cellular gene expression...

  15. Whole Genome Epigenetics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Carmell, Michelle

    2003-01-01

    .... However, this is only part of the picture. Increasingly, we are learning that epigenetic changes, that is, changes in chromatin structure, are critically important in regulation cellular gene expression...

  16. The Epigenetic Paradox of Pluripotent ES Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Festuccia, Nicola; Gonzalez, Inma; Navarro, Pablo

    2017-05-19

    The propagation and maintenance of gene expression programs are at the foundation of the preservation of cell identity. A large and complex set of epigenetic mechanisms enables the long-term stability and inheritance of transcription states. A key property of authentic epigenetic regulation is being independent from the instructive signals used for its establishment. This makes epigenetic regulation, particularly epigenetic silencing, extremely robust and powerful to lock regulatory states and stabilise cell identity. In line with this, the establishment of epigenetic silencing during development restricts cell potency and maintains the cell fate choices made by transcription factors (TFs). However, how more immature cells that have not yet established their definitive fate maintain their transitory identity without compromising their responsiveness to signalling cues remains unclear. A paradigmatic example is provided by pluripotent embryonic stem (ES) cells derived from a transient population of cells of the blastocyst. Here, we argue that ES cells represent an interesting "epigenetic paradox": even though they are captured in a self-renewing state characterised by extremely efficient maintenance of their identity, which is a typical manifestation of robust epigenetic regulation, they seem not to heavily rely on classical epigenetic mechanisms. Indeed, self-renewal strictly depends on the TFs that previously instructed their undifferentiated identity and relies on a particular signalling-dependent chromatin state where repressive chromatin marks play minor roles. Although this "epigenetic paradox" may underlie their exquisite responsiveness to developmental cues, it suggests that alternative mechanisms to faithfully propagate gene regulatory states might be prevalent in ES cells. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  17. Replication stress, a source of epigenetic aberrations in cancer?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jasencakova, Zusana; Groth, Anja

    2010-01-01

    . Chromatin organization is transiently disrupted during DNA replication and maintenance of epigenetic information thus relies on faithful restoration of chromatin on the new daughter strands. Acute replication stress challenges proper chromatin restoration by deregulating histone H3 lysine 9 mono...

  18. Chromatin Immunoprecipitation (ChIP) using Drosophila tissue

    OpenAIRE

    Tran, Vuong; Gan, Qiang; Chen, Xin

    2012-01-01

    Epigenetics remains a rapidly developing field that studies how the chromatin state contributes to differential gene expression in distinct cell types at different developmental stages. Epigenetic regulation contributes to a broad spectrum of biological processes, including cellular differentiation during embryonic development and homeostasis in adulthood. A critical strategy in epigenetic studies is to examine how various histone modifications and chromatin factors regulate gene expression. ...

  19. Proteomic interrogation of human chromatin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana P Torrente

    Full Text Available Chromatin proteins provide a scaffold for DNA packaging and a basis for epigenetic regulation and genomic maintenance. Despite understanding its functional roles, mapping the chromatin proteome (i.e. the "Chromatome" is still a continuing process. Here, we assess the biological specificity and proteomic extent of three distinct chromatin preparations by identifying proteins in selected chromatin-enriched fractions using mass spectrometry-based proteomics. These experiments allowed us to produce a chromatin catalog, including several proteins ranging from highly abundant histone proteins to less abundant members of different chromatin machinery complexes. Using a Normalized Spectral Abundance Factor approach, we quantified relative abundances of the proteins across the chromatin enriched fractions giving a glimpse into their chromosomal abundance. The large-scale data sets also allowed for the discovery of a variety of novel post-translational modifications on the identified chromatin proteins. With these comparisons, we find one of the probed methods to be qualitatively superior in specificity for chromatin proteins, but inferior in proteomic extent, evidencing a compromise that must be made between biological specificity and broadness of characterization. Additionally, we attempt to identify proteins in eu- and heterochromatin, verifying the enrichments by characterizing the post-translational modifications detected on histone proteins from these chromatin regions. In summary, our results provide insights into the value of different methods to extract chromatin-associated proteins and provide starting points to study the factors that may be involved in directing gene expression and other chromatin-related processes.

  20. Epigenetics and cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Anders H; van Lohuizen, Maarten

    2004-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms act to change the accessibility of chromatin to transcriptional regulation locally and globally via modifications of the DNA and by modification or rearrangement of nucleosomes. Epigenetic gene regulation collaborates with genetic alterations in cancer development. This is e......Epigenetic mechanisms act to change the accessibility of chromatin to transcriptional regulation locally and globally via modifications of the DNA and by modification or rearrangement of nucleosomes. Epigenetic gene regulation collaborates with genetic alterations in cancer development....... This is evident from every aspect of tumor biology including cell growth and differentiation, cell cycle control, DNA repair, angiogenesis, migration, and evasion of host immunosurveillance. In contrast to genetic cancer causes, the possibility of reversing epigenetic codes may provide new targets for therapeutic...

  1. Chromatin challenges during DNA replication and repair

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Groth, Anja; Rocha, Walter; Verreault, Alain

    2007-01-01

    Inheritance and maintenance of the DNA sequence and its organization into chromatin are central for eukaryotic life. To orchestrate DNA-replication and -repair processes in the context of chromatin is a challenge, both in terms of accessibility and maintenance of chromatin organization. To meet...... the challenge of maintenance, cells have evolved efficient nucleosome-assembly pathways and chromatin-maturation mechanisms that reproduce chromatin organization in the wake of DNA replication and repair. The aim of this Review is to describe how these pathways operate and to highlight how the epigenetic...... landscape may be stably maintained even in the face of dramatic changes in chromatin structure....

  2. Human Genome Replication Proceeds through Four Chromatin States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Julienne, Hanna; Zoufir, Azedine; Audit, Benjamin; Arneodo, Alain

    2013-01-01

    Advances in genomic studies have led to significant progress in understanding the epigenetically controlled interplay between chromatin structure and nuclear functions. Epigenetic modifications were shown to play a key role in transcription regulation and genome activity during development and differentiation or in response to the environment. Paradoxically, the molecular mechanisms that regulate the initiation and the maintenance of the spatio-temporal replication program in higher eukaryotes, and in particular their links to epigenetic modifications, still remain elusive. By integrative analysis of the genome-wide distributions of thirteen epigenetic marks in the human cell line K562, at the 100 kb resolution of corresponding mean replication timing (MRT) data, we identify four major groups of chromatin marks with shared features. These states have different MRT, namely from early to late replicating, replication proceeds though a transcriptionally active euchromatin state (C1), a repressive type of chromatin (C2) associated with polycomb complexes, a silent state (C3) not enriched in any available marks, and a gene poor HP1-associated heterochromatin state (C4). When mapping these chromatin states inside the megabase-sized U-domains (U-shaped MRT profile) covering about 50% of the human genome, we reveal that the associated replication fork polarity gradient corresponds to a directional path across the four chromatin states, from C1 at U-domains borders followed by C2, C3 and C4 at centers. Analysis of the other genome half is consistent with early and late replication loci occurring in separate compartments, the former correspond to gene-rich, high-GC domains of intermingled chromatin states C1 and C2, whereas the latter correspond to gene-poor, low-GC domains of alternating chromatin states C3 and C4 or long C4 domains. This new segmentation sheds a new light on the epigenetic regulation of the spatio-temporal replication program in human and provides a

  3. Epigenetic Regulation of Telomere Maintenance

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fojtová, M.; Fajkus, Jiří

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 143, 1-3 (2014), s. 125-135 ISSN 1424-8581 Institutional support: RVO:68081707 Keywords : Chromatin * DNA methylation * Epigenetic s Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 1.561, year: 2014

  4. Chromatin remodeling in mammalian embryos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cabot, Birgit; Cabot, Ryan A

    2018-03-01

    The mammalian embryo undergoes a dramatic amount of epigenetic remodeling during the first week of development. In this review, we discuss several epigenetic changes that happen over the course of cleavage development, focusing on covalent marks (e.g., histone methylation and acetylation) and non-covalent remodeling (chromatin remodeling via remodeling complexes; e.g., SWI/SNF-mediated chromatin remodeling). Comparisons are also drawn between remodeling events that occur in embryos from a variety of mammalian species. © 2018 Society for Reproduction and Fertility.

  5. Reprogramming chromatin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ehrensberger, Andreas Hasso; Svejstrup, Jesper Qualmann

    2012-01-01

    attributed to high kinetic barriers that affect all cells equally and can only be overcome by rare stochastic events. The barriers to reprogramming are likely to involve transformations of chromatin state because (i) inhibitors of chromatin-modifying enzymes can enhance the efficiency of reprogramming...... and (ii) knockdown or knock-out of chromatin-modifying enzymes can lower the efficiency of reprogramming. Here, we review the relationship between chromatin state transformations (chromatin reprogramming) and cellular reprogramming, with an emphasis on transcription factors, chromatin remodeling factors...

  6. Epigenetic inheritance in apomictic dandelions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Preite, V.

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic variation, such as changes in DNA methylations, regulatory small RNAs (sRNAs) and chromatin modifications can be induced by environmental stress. There is increasing information that such induced epigenetic modifications can be transmitted to offspring, potentially mediating adaptive

  7. Epigenetic Mechanisms Underlie Genome Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamm, Ehud

    2013-01-01

    Technological and methodological advances, in particular next-generation sequencing and chromatin profiling, has led to a deluge of data on epigenetic mechanisms and processes. Epigenetic regulation in the brain is no exception. In this commentary, Ehud Lamm writes that extending existing frameworks for thinking about psychological development to…

  8. Chromatin-modifying proteins in cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fog, Cathrine K; Jensen, Klaus T; Lund, Anders Henrik

    2007-01-01

    -despite the fact that all cells in the organism contain the same genetic information. A large amount of data gathered over the last decades has demonstrated that deregulation of chromatin-modifying proteins is etiologically involved in the development and progression of cancer. Here we discuss how epigenetic...... alterations influence cancer development and review known cancer-associated alterations in chromatin-modifying proteins....

  9. Chromatin proteins and modifications as drug targets

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Helin, Kristian; Dhanak, Dashyant

    2013-01-01

    is a frequent event in disease, and the first epigenetic-based therapies for cancer treatment have been approved. A generation of new classes of potent and specific inhibitors for several chromatin-associated proteins have shown promise in preclinical trials. Although the biology of epigenetic regulation...

  10. Epigenetic Regulation in Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pikaard, Craig S.; Mittelsten Scheid, Ortrun

    2014-01-01

    The study of epigenetics in plants has a long and rich history, from initial descriptions of non-Mendelian gene behaviors to seminal discoveries of chromatin-modifying proteins and RNAs that mediate gene silencing in most eukaryotes, including humans. Genetic screens in the model plant Arabidopsis have been particularly rewarding, identifying more than 130 epigenetic regulators thus far. The diversity of epigenetic pathways in plants is remarkable, presumably contributing to the phenotypic plasticity of plant postembryonic development and the ability to survive and reproduce in unpredictable environments. PMID:25452385

  11. Chromatin-modifying proteins in cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fog, Cathrine K; Jensen, Klaus T; Lund, Anders Henrik

    2007-01-01

    Chromatin-modifying proteins mold the genome into areas that are accessible for transcriptional activity and areas that are transcriptionally silent. This epigenetic gene regulation allows for different transcriptional programs to be conducted in different cell types at different timepoints......-despite the fact that all cells in the organism contain the same genetic information. A large amount of data gathered over the last decades has demonstrated that deregulation of chromatin-modifying proteins is etiologically involved in the development and progression of cancer. Here we discuss how epigenetic...... alterations influence cancer development and review known cancer-associated alterations in chromatin-modifying proteins....

  12. Effects of BPA on global DNA methylation and global histone 3 lysine modifications in SH-SY5Y cells: An epigenetic mechanism linking the regulation of chromatin modifiying genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senyildiz, Mine; Karaman, Ecem Fatma; Bas, Serap Sancar; Pirincci, Pelin Arda; Ozden, Sibel

    2017-10-01

    Bisphenol A (BPA), an estrogenic endocrine disruptor, is widely used in the production of polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resins, resulting in high risk on human health. In present study we aimed to investigate the effects of BPA on global and gene specific DNA methylation, global histone modifications and regulation of chromatin modifiying enzymes in human neuroblastoma cells (SH-SY5Y). Cells were treated with BPA at 0.1, 1 and 10μM concentrations for 48 and 96h. IC 50 value of BPA was determined as 183 and 129μM in SH-SY5Y cells after 24h by MTT and NRU tests, respectively. We observed significant alterations on the 5-mC% levels (1.3 fold) and 5-hmC% levels (1.67 fold) after 10μM of BPA for 96h. Significant decrease was identified in H3K9me3 and H3K9ac after 10μM of BPA for 96h while decrease was observed in H3K4me3 at 10μM of BPA for 48h. Alterations were observed in chromatin modifiying genes including G9a, EZH2, SETD8, SETD1A, HAT1, SIRT1, DNMT1, RIZ1 and Suv39h1 after 96h of BPA exposure. Taken together, this study suggests that BPA might modulate the epigenetic regulators which would be key molecular events in the toxicity of endocrine disrupting chemicals. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Epigenetics in liver disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mann, Derek A

    2014-10-01

    Epigenetics is a term that encompasses a variety of regulatory processes that are able to crosstalk in order to influence gene expression and cell phenotype in response to environmental cues. A deep understanding of epigenetics offers the potential for fresh insights into the basis for complex chronic diseases and improved diagnostic and prognostic tools. Moreover, as epigenetic modifications are highly plastic and responsive to the environment, there is much excitement around the theme of epigenetic therapeutics, including not only new drugs but also more informed patient advice on lifestyle choices and their impact on pathology. This review briefly explains the molecular nature of the individual regulatory process that constitute epigenetics, including DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling, transcriptional control, and noncoding RNAs. The ways in which these epigenetic mechanisms influence liver physiology and disease will be considered in detail, particularly in the context of cancer, fibrosis, and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. The current limitations associated with epigenetic profiling and therapeutics in liver disease are discussed, as is the intriguing possibility that environmental-induced epigenetic changes may become stable and heritable. The aim of the review is to inform hepatologists of the emerging key epigenetic ideas of relevance to liver diseases that are highly likely to form a component of patient management and care in the next decade. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Hepatology published by Wiley on behalf of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.

  14. Transcriptional networks and chromatin remodeling controlling adipogenesis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Siersbæk, Rasmus; Nielsen, Ronni; Mandrup, Susanne

    2012-01-01

    Adipocyte differentiation is tightly controlled by a transcriptional cascade, which directs the extensive reprogramming of gene expression required to convert fibroblast-like precursor cells into mature lipid-laden adipocytes. Recent global analyses of transcription factor binding and chromatin...... remodeling have revealed 'snapshots' of this cascade and the chromatin landscape at specific time-points of differentiation. These studies demonstrate that multiple adipogenic transcription factors co-occupy hotspots characterized by an open chromatin structure and specific epigenetic modifications....... Such transcription factor hotspots are likely to represent key signaling nodes which integrate multiple adipogenic signals at specific chromatin sites, thereby facilitating coordinated action on gene expression....

  15. Chromatin priming of genes in development: Concepts, mechanisms and consequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonifer, Constanze; Cockerill, Peter N

    2017-05-01

    During ontogeny, cells progress through multiple alternate differentiation states by activating distinct gene regulatory networks. In this review, we highlight the important role of chromatin priming in facilitating gene activation during lineage specification and in maintaining an epigenetic memory of previous gene activation. We show that chromatin priming is part of a hugely diverse repertoire of regulatory mechanisms that genes use to ensure that they are expressed at the correct time, in the correct cell type, and at the correct level, but also that they react to signals. We also emphasize how increasing our knowledge of these principles could inform our understanding of developmental failure and disease. Copyright © 2017 ISEH - International Society for Experimental Hematology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Dietary polyphenols and chromatin remodeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russo, Gian Luigi; Vastolo, Viviana; Ciccarelli, Marco; Albano, Luigi; Macchia, Paolo Emidio; Ungaro, Paola

    2017-08-13

    Polyphenols are the most abundant phytochemicals in fruits, vegetables, and plant-derived beverages. Recent findings suggest that polyphenols display the ability to reverse adverse epigenetic regulation involved in pathological conditions, such as obesity, metabolic disorder, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases, and various forms of cancer. Epigenetics, defined as heritable changes to the transcriptome, independent from those occurring in the genome, includes DNA methylation, histone modifications, and posttranscriptional gene regulation by noncoding RNAs. Sinergistically and cooperatively, these processes regulate gene expression by changing chromatin organization and DNA accessibility. Such induced epigenetic changes can be inherited during cell division, resulting in permanent maintenance of the acquired phenotype, but they may also occur throughout an individual life-course and may ultimately influence phenotypic outcomes (health and disease risk). In the last decade, a number of studies have shown that nutrients can affect metabolic traits by altering the structure of chromatin and directly regulate both transcription and translational processes. In this context, dietary polyphenol-targeted epigenetics becomes an attractive approach for disease prevention and intervention. Here, we will review how polyphenols, including flavonoids, curcuminoids, and stilbenes, modulate the establishment and maintenance of key epigenetic marks, thereby influencing gene expression and, hence, disease risk and health.

  17. Probing Chromatin Modifications in Response to ERK Signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oksuz, Ozgur; Tee, Wee-Wei

    2017-01-01

    Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) is a technique used to determine the association of proteins or histone modifications with chromatin regions in living cells or tissues, and is used extensively in the chromatin biology field to study transcriptional and epigenetic mechanisms. Increasing evidence points to an epigenetic coordination of signaling cascades, such as ERK, that regulate key processes in development and disease, revealing novel principles of gene regulation. Here we describe a detailed protocol for performing chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by qPCR (ChIP-qPCR) for probing histone modifications regulated by ERK signaling in mouse ESCs.

  18. Review article Epigenetics with special reference to the human X ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    dileep.deobagkar@outlook.com

    Keywords: 5-methylcytosine and 6-methyladenine, DNA methyltransferases, chromatin remodelling, CpG methylation,. Epigenetic processes involve chromatin remodelling and imprinting. Epigenetic marks are set in place and maintained through DNA methylation, modifications of proteins such as histones and remodelling ...

  19. Where splicing joins chromatin

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hnilicová, Jarmila; Staněk, David

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 2, č. 3 (2011), s. 182-188 ISSN 1949-1034 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP305/10/0424; GA AV ČR KAN200520801 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50520514 Keywords : chromatin * exon * alternative splicing * transcription * snRNP Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology

  20. Epigenetics and Autism

    OpenAIRE

    Mbadiwe, Tafari; Millis, Richard M.

    2013-01-01

    This review identifies mechanisms for altering DNA-histone interactions of cell chromatin to upregulate or downregulate gene expression that could serve as epigenetic targets for therapeutic interventions in autism. DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) can phosphorylate histone H3 at T6. Aided by protein kinase C ? 1, the DNMT lysine-specific demethylase-1 prevents demethylation of H3 at K4. During androgen-receptor-(AR-) dependent gene activation, this sequence may produce AR-dependent gene overac...

  1. Epigenetic regulation of neuroblastoma development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durinck, Kaat; Speleman, Frank

    2018-01-19

    In recent years, technological advances have enabled a detailed landscaping of the epigenome and the mechanisms of epigenetic regulation that drive normal cell function, development and cancer. Rather than merely a structural entity to support genome compaction, we now look at chromatin as a very dynamic and essential constellation that is actively participating in the tight orchestration of transcriptional regulation as well as DNA replication and repair. The unique feature of chromatin flexibility enabling fast switches towards more or less restricted epigenetic cellular states is, not surprisingly, intimately connected to cancer development and treatment resistance, and the central role of epigenetic alterations in cancer is illustrated by the finding that up to 50% of all mutations across cancer entities affect proteins controlling the chromatin status. We summarize recent insights into epigenetic rewiring underlying neuroblastoma (NB) tumor formation ranging from changes in DNA methylation patterns and mutations in epigenetic regulators to global effects on transcriptional regulatory circuits that involve key players in NB oncogenesis. Insights into the disruption of the homeostatic epigenetic balance contributing to developmental arrest of sympathetic progenitor cells and subsequent NB oncogenesis are rapidly growing and will be exploited towards the development of novel therapeutic strategies to increase current survival rates of patients with high-risk NB.

  2. Epigenetic Modifications: Therapeutic Potential in Cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manisha Sachan

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetic modifications and alterations in chromatin structure and function contribute to the cumulative changes observed as normal cells undergo malignant transformation. These modifications and enzymes (DNA methyltransferases, histone deacetylases, histone methyltransferases, and demethylases related to them have been deeply studied to develop new drugs, epigenome-targeted therapies and new diagnostic tools. Epigenetic modifiers aim to restore normal epigenetic modification patterns through the inhibition of epigenetic modifier enzymes. Four of them (azacitidine, decitabine, vorinostat and romidepsin are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This article provides an overview about the known functional roles of epigenetic enzymes in cancer development.

  3. Epigenetics and pharmacology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stefanska, Barbara; MacEwan, David J

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in the understanding of gene regulation have shown there to be much more regulation of the genome than first thought, through epigenetic mechanisms. These epigenetic mechanisms are systems that have evolved to either switch off gene activity altogether, or fine-tune any existing genetic activation. Such systems are present in all genes and include chromatin modifications and remodelling, DNA methylation (such as CpG island methylation rates) and histone covalent modifications (e.g. acetylation, methylation), RNA interference by short interfering RNAs (siRNAs) and long non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs). These systems regulate genomic activity ‘beyond’ simple transcriptional factor inducer or repressor function of genes to generate mRNA. Epigenetic regulation of gene activity has been shown to be important in maintaining normal phenotypic activity of cells, as well as having a role in development and diseases such as cancer and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's. Newer classes of drugs regulate epigenetic mechanisms to counteract disease states in humans. The reports in this issue describe some advances in epigenetic understanding that relate to human disease, and our ability to control these mechanisms by pharmacological means. Increasingly the importance of epigenetics is being uncovered – it is pharmacology that will have to keep pace. PMID:25966315

  4. Concerted Flexibility of Chromatin Structure, Methylome, and Histone Modifications along with Plant Stress Responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Paula Santos

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The spatial organization of chromosome structure within the interphase nucleus, as well as the patterns of methylome and histone modifications, represent intersecting layers that influence genome accessibility and function. This review is focused on the plastic nature of chromatin structure and epigenetic marks in association to stress situations. The use of chemical compounds (epigenetic drugs or T-DNA-mediated mutagenesis affecting epigenetic regulators (epi-mutants are discussed as being important tools for studying the impact of deregulated epigenetic backgrounds on gene function and phenotype. The inheritability of epigenetic marks and chromatin configurations along successive generations are interpreted as a way for plants to “communicate” past experiences of stress sensing. A mechanistic understanding of chromatin and epigenetics plasticity in plant response to stress, including tissue- and genotype-specific epigenetic patterns, may help to reveal the epigenetics contributions for genome and phenotype regulation.

  5. Phosphorylation-dependent regulation of plant chromatin and chromatin-associated proteins

    KAUST Repository

    Bigeard, Jean

    2014-07-10

    In eukaryotes, most of the DNA is located in the nucleus where it is organized with histone proteins in a higher order structure as chromatin. Chromatin and chromatin-associated proteins contribute to DNA-related processes such as replication and transcription as well as epigenetic regulation. Protein functions are often regulated by PTMs among which phosphorylation is one of the most abundant PTM. Phosphorylation of proteins affects important properties, such as enzyme activity, protein stability, or subcellular localization. We here describe the main specificities of protein phosphorylation in plants and review the current knowledge on phosphorylation-dependent regulation of plant chromatin and chromatin-associated proteins. We also outline some future challenges to further elucidate protein phosphorylation and chromatin regulation.

  6. Histone acetylation: molecular mnemonics on the chromatin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gräff, Johannes; Tsai, Li-Huei

    2013-02-01

    Long-lasting memories require specific gene expression programmes that are, in part, orchestrated by epigenetic mechanisms. Of the epigenetic modifications identified in cognitive processes, histone acetylation has spurred considerable interest. Whereas increments in histone acetylation have consistently been shown to favour learning and memory, a lack thereof has been causally implicated in cognitive impairments in neurodevelopmental disorders, neurodegeneration and ageing. As histone acetylation and cognitive functions can be pharmacologically restored by histone deacetylase inhibitors, this epigenetic modification might constitute a molecular memory aid on the chromatin and, by extension, a new template for therapeutic interventions against cognitive frailty.

  7. Epigenetic mechanisms of nutrient-induced modulation of gene expression and cellular functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utilizing next-generation sequencing technology in combination with chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) technology, our study provides systematic and novel insights into the relationships between nutrition and epigenetics. One paradigmatic example of nutrient-epigenetic-phenotype relationship is th...

  8. Map of open and closed chromatin domains in Drosophila genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milon, Beatrice; Sun, Yezhou; Chang, Weizhong; Creasy, Todd; Mahurkar, Anup; Shetty, Amol; Nurminsky, Dmitry; Nurminskaya, Maria

    2014-11-18

    Chromatin compactness has been considered a major determinant of gene activity and has been associated with specific chromatin modifications in studies on a few individual genetic loci. At the same time, genome-wide patterns of open and closed chromatin have been understudied, and are at present largely predicted from chromatin modification and gene expression data. However the universal applicability of such predictions is not self-evident, and requires experimental verification. We developed and implemented a high-throughput analysis for general chromatin sensitivity to DNase I which provides a comprehensive epigenomic assessment in a single assay. Contiguous domains of open and closed chromatin were identified by computational analysis of the data, and correlated to other genome annotations including predicted chromatin "states", individual chromatin modifications, nuclear lamina interactions, and gene expression. While showing that the widely trusted predictions of chromatin structure are correct in the majority of cases, we detected diverse "exceptions" from the conventional rules. We found a profound paucity of chromatin modifications in a major fraction of closed chromatin, and identified a number of loci where chromatin configuration is opposite to that expected from modification and gene expression patterns. Further, we observed that chromatin of large introns tends to be closed even when the genes are expressed, and that a significant proportion of active genes including their promoters are located in closed chromatin. These findings reveal limitations of the existing predictive models, indicate novel mechanisms of epigenetic regulation, and provide important insights into genome organization and function.

  9. Epigenetics and Colorectal Cancer Pathogenesis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bardhan, Kankana; Liu, Kebin

    2013-01-01

    Colorectal cancer (CRC) develops through a multistage process that results from the progressive accumulation of genetic mutations, and frequently as a result of mutations in the Wnt signaling pathway. However, it has become evident over the past two decades that epigenetic alterations of the chromatin, particularly the chromatin components in the promoter regions of tumor suppressors and oncogenes, play key roles in CRC pathogenesis. Epigenetic regulation is organized at multiple levels, involving primarily DNA methylation and selective histone modifications in cancer cells. Assessment of the CRC epigenome has revealed that virtually all CRCs have aberrantly methylated genes and that the average CRC methylome has thousands of abnormally methylated genes. Although relatively less is known about the patterns of specific histone modifications in CRC, selective histone modifications and resultant chromatin conformation have been shown to act, in concert with DNA methylation, to regulate gene expression to mediate CRC pathogenesis. Moreover, it is now clear that not only DNA methylation but also histone modifications are reversible processes. The increased understanding of epigenetic regulation of gene expression in the context of CRC pathogenesis has led to development of epigenetic biomarkers for CRC diagnosis and epigenetic drugs for CRC therapy

  10. Epigenetics and Colorectal Cancer Pathogenesis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bardhan, Kankana; Liu, Kebin, E-mail: Kliu@gru.edu [Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Medical College of Georgia, and Cancer Center, Georgia Regents University, Augusta, GA 30912 (United States)

    2013-06-05

    Colorectal cancer (CRC) develops through a multistage process that results from the progressive accumulation of genetic mutations, and frequently as a result of mutations in the Wnt signaling pathway. However, it has become evident over the past two decades that epigenetic alterations of the chromatin, particularly the chromatin components in the promoter regions of tumor suppressors and oncogenes, play key roles in CRC pathogenesis. Epigenetic regulation is organized at multiple levels, involving primarily DNA methylation and selective histone modifications in cancer cells. Assessment of the CRC epigenome has revealed that virtually all CRCs have aberrantly methylated genes and that the average CRC methylome has thousands of abnormally methylated genes. Although relatively less is known about the patterns of specific histone modifications in CRC, selective histone modifications and resultant chromatin conformation have been shown to act, in concert with DNA methylation, to regulate gene expression to mediate CRC pathogenesis. Moreover, it is now clear that not only DNA methylation but also histone modifications are reversible processes. The increased understanding of epigenetic regulation of gene expression in the context of CRC pathogenesis has led to development of epigenetic biomarkers for CRC diagnosis and epigenetic drugs for CRC therapy.

  11. Epigenetics reloaded: the single-cell revolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bheda, Poonam; Schneider, Robert

    2014-11-01

    Mechanistically, how epigenetic states are inherited through cellular divisions remains an important open question in the chromatin field and beyond. Defining the heritability of epigenetic states and the underlying chromatin-based mechanisms within a population of cells is complicated due to cell heterogeneity combined with varying levels of stability of these states; thus, efforts must be focused toward single-cell analyses. The approaches presented here constitute the forefront of epigenetics research at the single-cell level using classic and innovative methods to dissect epigenetics mechanisms from the limited material available in a single cell. This review further outlines exciting future avenues of research to address the significance of epigenetic heterogeneity and the contributions of microfluidics technologies to single-cell isolation and analysis. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Rapid and reversible epigenome editing by endogenous chromatin regulators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braun, Simon M G; Kirkland, Jacob G; Chory, Emma J; Husmann, Dylan; Calarco, Joseph P; Crabtree, Gerald R

    2017-09-15

    Understanding the causal link between epigenetic marks and gene regulation remains a central question in chromatin biology. To edit the epigenome we developed the FIRE-Cas9 system for rapid and reversible recruitment of endogenous chromatin regulators to specific genomic loci. We enhanced the dCas9-MS2 anchor for genome targeting with Fkbp/Frb dimerizing fusion proteins to allow chemical-induced proximity of a desired chromatin regulator. We find that mSWI/SNF (BAF) complex recruitment is sufficient to oppose Polycomb within minutes, leading to activation of bivalent gene transcription in mouse embryonic stem cells. Furthermore, Hp1/Suv39h1 heterochromatin complex recruitment to active promoters deposits H3K9me3 domains, resulting in gene silencing that can be reversed upon washout of the chemical dimerizer. This inducible recruitment strategy provides precise kinetic information to model epigenetic memory and plasticity. It is broadly applicable to mechanistic studies of chromatin in mammalian cells and is particularly suited to the analysis of endogenous multi-subunit chromatin regulator complexes.Understanding the link between epigenetic marks and gene regulation requires the development of new tools to directly manipulate chromatin. Here the authors demonstrate a Cas9-based system to recruit chromatin remodelers to loci of interest, allowing rapid, reversible manipulation of epigenetic states.

  13. Epigenetics, eh! A meeting summary of the Canadian Conference on Epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodenhiser, David I; Bérubé, Nathalie G; Mann, Mellissa R W

    2011-10-01

    In May 2011, the Canadian Conference on Epigenetics: Epigenetics Eh! was held in London, Canada. The objectives of this conference were to showcase the breadth of epigenetic research on environment and health across Canada and to provide the catalyst to develop collaborative Canadian epigenetic research opportunities, similar to existing international epigenetic initiatives in the US and Europe. With ten platform sessions and two sessions with over 100 poster presentations, this conference featured cutting-edge epigenetic research, presented by Canadian and international principal investigators and their trainees in the field of epigenetics and chromatin dynamics. An EpigenART competition included ten artists, creating a unique opportunity for artists and scientists to interact and explore their individual interpretations of this scientific discipline. The conference provided a unique venue for a significant cross-section of Canadian epigenetic researchers from diverse disciplines to meet, interact, collaborate and strategize at the national level.

  14. Molecular structures guide the engineering of chromatin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tekel, Stefan J; Haynes, Karmella A

    2017-07-27

    Chromatin is a system of proteins, RNA, and DNA that interact with each other to organize and regulate genetic information within eukaryotic nuclei. Chromatin proteins carry out essential functions: packing DNA during cell division, partitioning DNA into sub-regions within the nucleus, and controlling levels of gene expression. There is a growing interest in manipulating chromatin dynamics for applications in medicine and agriculture. Progress in this area requires the identification of design rules for the chromatin system. Here, we focus on the relationship between the physical structure and function of chromatin proteins. We discuss key research that has elucidated the intrinsic properties of chromatin proteins and how this information informs design rules for synthetic systems. Recent work demonstrates that chromatin-derived peptide motifs are portable and in some cases can be customized to alter their function. Finally, we present a workflow for fusion protein design and discuss best practices for engineering chromatin to assist scientists in advancing the field of synthetic epigenetics. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  15. Quantification of chromatin condensation level by image processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irianto, Jerome; Lee, David A; Knight, Martin M

    2014-03-01

    The level of chromatin condensation is related to the silencing/activation of chromosomal territories and therefore impacts on gene expression. Chromatin condensation changes during cell cycle, progression and differentiation, and is influenced by various physicochemical and epigenetic factors. This study describes a validated experimental technique to quantify chromatin condensation. A novel image processing procedure is developed using Sobel edge detection to quantify the level of chromatin condensation from nuclei images taken by confocal microscopy. The algorithm was developed in MATLAB and used to quantify different levels of chromatin condensation in chondrocyte nuclei achieved through alteration in osmotic pressure. The resulting chromatin condensation parameter (CCP) is in good agreement with independent multi-observer qualitative visual assessment. This image processing technique thereby provides a validated unbiased parameter for rapid and highly reproducible quantification of the level of chromatin condensation. Copyright © 2013 IPEM. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Sensitive periods in epigenetics: bringing us closer to complex behavioral phenotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagy, Corina; Turecki, Gustavo

    2012-08-01

    Genetic studies have attempted to elucidate causal mechanisms for the development of complex disease, but genome-wide associations have been largely unsuccessful in establishing these links. As an alternative link between genes and disease, recent efforts have focused on mechanisms that alter the function of genes without altering the underlying DNA sequence. Known as epigenetic mechanisms, these include DNA methylation, chromatin conformational changes through histone modifications, ncRNAs and, most recently, 5-hydroxymethylcytosine. Although DNA methylation is involved in normal development, aging and gene regulation, altered methylation patterns have been associated with disease. It is generally believed that early life constitutes a period during which there is increased sensitivity to the regulatory effects of epigenetic mechanisms. The purpose of this review is to outline the contribution of epigenetic mechanisms to genomic function, particularly in the development of complex behavioral phenotypes, focusing on the sensitive periods.

  17. Is Glioblastoma an Epigenetic Malignancy?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maleszewska, Marta; Kaminska, Bozena, E-mail: B.Kaminska@nencki.gov.pl [Laboratory of Molecular Neurobiology, Neurobiology Center, The Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology, 3 Pasteur Str., Warsaw 02-093 (Poland)

    2013-09-03

    Epigenetic modifications control gene expression by regulating the access of nuclear proteins to their target DNA and have been implicated in both normal cell differentiation and oncogenic transformation. Epigenetic abnormalities can occur both as a cause and as a consequence of cancer. Oncogenic transformation can deeply alter the epigenetic information enclosed in the pattern of DNA methylation or histone modifications. In addition, in some cancers epigenetic dysfunctions can drive oncogenic transformation. Growing evidence emphasizes the interplay between metabolic disturbances, epigenomic changes and cancer, i.e., mutations in the metabolic enzymes SDH, FH, and IDH may contribute to cancer development. Epigenetic-based mechanisms are reversible and the possibility of “resetting” the abnormal cancer epigenome by applying pharmacological or genetic strategies is an attractive, novel approach. Gliomas are incurable with all current therapeutic approaches and new strategies are urgently needed. Increasing evidence suggests the role of epigenetic events in development and/or progression of gliomas. In this review, we summarize current data on the occurrence and significance of mutations in the epigenetic and metabolic enzymes in pathobiology of gliomas. We discuss emerging therapies targeting specific epigenetic modifications or chromatin modifying enzymes either alone or in combination with other treatment regimens.

  18. Epigenetic regulation of human retinoblastoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Usha; Malik, Manzoor Ahmad; Goswami, Sandeep; Shukla, Swati; Kaur, Jasbir

    2016-11-01

    Retinoblastoma is a rare type of eye cancer of the retina that commonly occurs in early childhood and mostly affects the children before the age of 5. It occurs due to the mutations in the retinoblastoma gene (RB1) which inactivates both alleles of the RB1. RB1 was first identified as a tumor suppressor gene, which regulates cell cycle components and associated with retinoblastoma. Previously, genetic alteration was known as the major cause of its occurrence, but later, it is revealed that besides genetic changes, epigenetic changes also play a significant role in the disease. Initiation and progression of retinoblastoma could be due to independent or combined genetic and epigenetic events. Remarkable work has been done in understanding retinoblastoma pathogenesis in terms of genetic alterations, but not much in the context of epigenetic modification. Epigenetic modifications that silence tumor suppressor genes and activate oncogenes include DNA methylation, chromatin remodeling, histone modification and noncoding RNA-mediated gene silencing. Epigenetic changes can lead to altered gene function and transform normal cell into tumor cells. This review focuses on important epigenetic alteration which occurs in retinoblastoma and its current state of knowledge. The critical role of epigenetic regulation in retinoblastoma is now an emerging area, and better understanding of epigenetic changes in retinoblastoma will open the door for future therapy and diagnosis.

  19. Is Glioblastoma an Epigenetic Malignancy?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maleszewska, Marta; Kaminska, Bozena

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic modifications control gene expression by regulating the access of nuclear proteins to their target DNA and have been implicated in both normal cell differentiation and oncogenic transformation. Epigenetic abnormalities can occur both as a cause and as a consequence of cancer. Oncogenic transformation can deeply alter the epigenetic information enclosed in the pattern of DNA methylation or histone modifications. In addition, in some cancers epigenetic dysfunctions can drive oncogenic transformation. Growing evidence emphasizes the interplay between metabolic disturbances, epigenomic changes and cancer, i.e., mutations in the metabolic enzymes SDH, FH, and IDH may contribute to cancer development. Epigenetic-based mechanisms are reversible and the possibility of “resetting” the abnormal cancer epigenome by applying pharmacological or genetic strategies is an attractive, novel approach. Gliomas are incurable with all current therapeutic approaches and new strategies are urgently needed. Increasing evidence suggests the role of epigenetic events in development and/or progression of gliomas. In this review, we summarize current data on the occurrence and significance of mutations in the epigenetic and metabolic enzymes in pathobiology of gliomas. We discuss emerging therapies targeting specific epigenetic modifications or chromatin modifying enzymes either alone or in combination with other treatment regimens

  20. Ligation-mediated PCR for chromatin-structure analysis of interphase and metaphase chromatin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hershkovitz, M; Riggs, A D

    1997-02-01

    Chromatin structure is becoming increasingly recognized as important for a full understanding of gene function and cell memory. With regard to cell memory, which involves the transfer of chromatin-encoded epigenetic information from one cell generation to another, the detailed structure of metaphase chromatin is of crucial importance. In this paper we describe methods for the use of dimethyl sulfate, DNase I, and potassium permanganate for in vivo footprinting and chromatin analysis, with special emphasis on studies of metaphase cells. We review the use of ligation-mediated PCR for the analysis of chromatin, including the human phosphoglycerate kinase promoter, and also report initial studies of a matrix attachment region near the human beta-interferon gene.

  1. Probabilistic modelling of chromatin code landscape reveals functional diversity of enhancer-like chromatin states

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Jian; Troyanskaya, Olga G.

    2016-01-01

    Interpreting the functional state of chromatin from the combinatorial binding patterns of chromatin factors, that is, the chromatin codes, is crucial for decoding the epigenetic state of the cell. Here we present a systematic map of Drosophila chromatin states derived from data-driven probabilistic modelling of dependencies between chromatin factors. Our model not only recapitulates enhancer-like chromatin states as indicated by widely used enhancer marks but also divides these states into three functionally distinct groups, of which only one specific group possesses active enhancer activity. Moreover, we discover a strong association between one specific enhancer state and RNA Polymerase II pausing, linking transcription regulatory potential and chromatin organization. We also observe that with the exception of long-intron genes, chromatin state transition positions in transcriptionally active genes align with an absolute distance to their corresponding transcription start site, regardless of gene length. Using our method, we provide a resource that helps elucidate the functional and spatial organization of the chromatin code landscape. PMID:26841971

  2. Chromatin dynamics coupled to DNA repair.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huertas, Dori; Sendra, Ramon; Muñoz, Purificación

    2009-01-01

    In order to protect and preserve the integrity of the genome, eukaryotic cells have developed accurate DNA repair pathways involving a coordinated network of DNA repair and epigenetic factors. The DNA damage response has to proceed in the context of chromatin, a packaged and compact structure that is flexible enough to regulate the accession of the DNA repair machinery to DNA-damaged sites. Chromatin modifications and ATP-remodeling activities are both necessary to ensure efficient DNA repair. Here we review the current progress of research into the importance of chromatin modifications and the ATP-remodeling complex to the DNA damage response, with respect to the sensing and signaling of DNA lesions, DNA repair and the processes that restore chromatin structure.

  3. The epigenetic landscape of alcoholism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnan, Harish R; Sakharkar, Amul J; Teppen, Tara L; Berkel, Tiffani D M; Pandey, Subhash C

    2014-01-01

    Alcoholism is a complex psychiatric disorder that has a multifactorial etiology. Epigenetic mechanisms are uniquely capable of accounting for the multifactorial nature of the disease in that they are highly stable and are affected by environmental factors, including alcohol itself. Chromatin remodeling causes changes in gene expression in specific brain regions contributing to the endophenotypes of alcoholism such as tolerance and dependence. The epigenetic mechanisms that regulate changes in gene expression observed in addictive behaviors respond not only to alcohol exposure but also to comorbid psychopathology such as the presence of anxiety and stress. This review summarizes recent developments in epigenetic research that may play a role in alcoholism. We propose that pharmacologically manipulating epigenetic targets, as demonstrated in various preclinical models, hold great therapeutic potential in the treatment and prevention of alcoholism. © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Exposure to Hycanthone alters chromatin structure around specific gene functions and specific repeats in Schistosoma mansoni

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David eRoquis

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Schistosoma mansoni is a parasitic plathyhelminth responsible for intestinal schistosomiasis (or bilharziasis, a disease affecting 67 million people worldwide and causing an important economic burden. The schistosomicides hycanthone, and its later proxy oxamniquine, were widely used for treatments in endemic areas during the 20th century. Recently, the mechanism of action, as well as the genetic origin of a stably and Mendelian inherited resistance for both drugs was elucidated in two strains. However, several observations suggested early on that alternative mechanisms might exist, by which resistance could be induced for these two drugs in sensitive lines of schistosomes. This induced resistance appeared rapidly, within the first generation, but was metastable (not stably inherited. Epigenetic inheritance could explain such a phenomenon and we therefore re-analyzed the historical data with our current knowledge of epigenetics. In addition, we performed new experiments such as ChIP-seq on hycanthone treated worms. We found distinct chromatin structure changes between sensitive worms and induced resistant worms from the same strain. No specific pathway was discovered, but genes in which chromatin structure modification were observed are mostly associated with transport and catabolism, which makes sense in the context of the elimination of the drug. Specific differences were observed in the repetitive compartment of the genome. We finally describe what types of experiments are needed to understand the complexity of heritability that can be based on genetic and/or epigenetic mechanisms for drug resistance in schistosomes.

  5. Epigenetic mechanisms in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akbarian, Schahram

    2014-09-01

    Schizophrenia is a major psychiatric disorder that lacks a unifying neuropathology, while currently available pharmacological treatments provide only limited benefits to many patients. This review will discuss how the field of neuroepigenetics could contribute to advancements of the existing knowledge on the neurobiology and treatment of psychosis. Genome-scale mapping of DMA methylation, histone modifications and variants, and chromosomal loopings for promoter-enhancer interactions and other epigenetic determinants of genome organization and function are likely to provide important clues about mechanisms contributing to dysregulated expression of synaptic and metabolic genes in schizophrenia brain, including the potential links to the underlying genetic risk architecture and environmental exposures. In addition, studies in animal models are providing a rapidly increasing list of chromatin-regulatory mechanisms with significant effects on cognition and complex behaviors, thereby pointing to the therapeutic potential of epigenetic drug targets in the nervous system.

  6. Nucleosome Positioning and Epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwab, David; Bruinsma, Robijn

    2008-03-01

    The role of chromatin structure in gene regulation has recently taken center stage in the field of epigenetics, phenomena that change the phenotype without changing the DNA sequence. Recent work has also shown that nucleosomes, a complex of DNA wrapped around a histone octamer, experience a sequence dependent energy landscape due to the variation in DNA bend stiffness with sequence composition. In this talk, we consider the role nucleosome positioning might play in the formation of heterochromatin, a compact form of DNA generically responsible for gene silencing. In particular, we discuss how different patterns of nucleosome positions, periodic or random, could either facilitate or suppress heterochromatin stability and formation.

  7. Histone Methylation and Epigenetic Silencing in Breast Cancer

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Simon, Jeffrey A; Lange, Carol A

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of this research is to investigate the role of a chromatin-modifying enzyme called EZH2 in breast cancer epigenetics and to develop strategies to identify chemical inhibitors of this, enzyme...

  8. Epigenetics, autism spectrum, and neurodevelopmental disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rangasamy, Sampathkumar; D'Mello, Santosh R; Narayanan, Vinodh

    2013-10-01

    Epigenetic marks are modifications of DNA and histones. They are considered to be permanent within a single cell during development, and are heritable across cell division. Programming of neurons through epigenetic mechanisms is believed to be critical in neural development. Disruption or alteration in this process causes an array of neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Recent studies have provided evidence for an altered epigenetic landscape in ASDs and demonstrated the central role of epigenetic mechanisms in their pathogenesis. Many of the genes linked to the ASDs encode proteins that are involved in transcriptional regulation and chromatin remodeling. In this review we highlight selected neurodevelopmental disorders in which epigenetic dysregulation plays an important role. These include Rett syndrome, fragile X syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, Angelman syndrome, and Kabuki syndrome. For each of these disorders, we discuss how advances in our understanding of epigenetic mechanisms may lead to novel therapeutic approaches.

  9. The dynamics of chromatin remodeling at promoters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mellor, Jane

    2005-07-22

    The nucleosome, the structural unit of chromatin, is known to play a central role in regulating gene transcription from promoters. The last seven years have spawned a vast amount of data on the enzymes that remodel and modify nucleosomes and the rules governing how transcription factors interact with the epigenetic code on histones. Yet despite this effort, there has yet to emerge a unifying mechanism by which nucleosomes are remodeled during gene regulation. Recent advances have allowed nucleosome dynamics on promoters to be studied in real time, dramatically changing how we think about gene regulation on chromatin templates.

  10. Sperm-derived histones contribute to zygotic chromatin in humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Derijck Alwin AHA

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background about 15% to 30% of the DNA in human sperm is packed in nucleosomes and transmission of this fraction to the embryo potentially serves as a mechanism to facilitate paternal epigenetic programs during embryonic development. However, hitherto it has not been established whether these nucleosomes are removed like the protamines or indeed contribute to paternal zygotic chromatin, thereby potentially contributing to the epigenome of the embryo. Results to clarify the fate of sperm-derived nucleosomes we have used the deposition characteristics of histone H3 variants from which follows that H3 replication variants present in zygotic paternal chromatin prior to S-phase originate from sperm. We have performed heterologous ICSI by injecting human sperm into mouse oocytes. Probing these zygotes with an antibody highly specific for the H3.1/H3.2 replication variants showed a clear signal in the decondensed human sperm chromatin prior to S-phase. In addition, staining of human multipronuclear zygotes also showed the H3.1/H3.2 replication variants in paternal chromatin prior to DNA replication. Conclusion these findings reveal that sperm-derived nucleosomal chromatin contributes to paternal zygotic chromatin, potentially serving as a template for replication, when epigenetic information can be copied. Hence, the execution of epigenetic programs originating from transmitted paternal chromatin during subsequent embryonic development is a logical consequence of this observation.

  11. Proteomics of a fuzzy organelle: interphase chromatin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kustatscher, Georg; Hégarat, Nadia; Wills, Karen L H; Furlan, Cristina; Bukowski-Wills, Jimi-Carlo; Hochegger, Helfrid; Rappsilber, Juri

    2014-01-01

    Chromatin proteins mediate replication, regulate expression, and ensure integrity of the genome. So far, a comprehensive inventory of interphase chromatin has not been determined. This is largely due to its heterogeneous and dynamic composition, which makes conclusive biochemical purification difficult, if not impossible. As a fuzzy organelle, it defies classical organellar proteomics and cannot be described by a single and ultimate list of protein components. Instead, we propose a new approach that provides a quantitative assessment of a protein's probability to function in chromatin. We integrate chromatin composition over a range of different biochemical and biological conditions. This resulted in interphase chromatin probabilities for 7635 human proteins, including 1840 previously uncharacterized proteins. We demonstrate the power of our large-scale data-driven annotation during the analysis of cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) regulation in chromatin. Quantitative protein ontologies may provide a general alternative to list-based investigations of organelles and complement Gene Ontology. PMID:24534090

  12. Defining B Cell Chromatin: Lessons from EBF1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boller, Sören; Li, Rui; Grosschedl, Rudolf

    2018-04-01

    Hematopoiesis is regulated by signals from the microenvironment, transcription factor networks, and changes of the epigenetic landscape. Transcription factors interact with and shape chromatin to allow for lineage- and cell type-specific changes in gene expression. During B lymphopoiesis, epigenetic regulation is observed in multilineage progenitors in which a specific chromatin context is established, at the onset of the B cell differentiation when early B cell factor 1 (EBF1) induces lineage-specific changes in chromatin, during V(D)J recombination and after antigen-driven activation of B cells and terminal differentiation. In this review, we discuss the epigenetic changes underlying B cell differentiation, focusing on the role of transcription factor EBF1 in B cell lineage priming. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Epigenetics and autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mbadiwe, Tafari; Millis, Richard M

    2013-01-01

    This review identifies mechanisms for altering DNA-histone interactions of cell chromatin to upregulate or downregulate gene expression that could serve as epigenetic targets for therapeutic interventions in autism. DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) can phosphorylate histone H3 at T6. Aided by protein kinase C β 1, the DNMT lysine-specific demethylase-1 prevents demethylation of H3 at K4. During androgen-receptor-(AR-) dependent gene activation, this sequence may produce AR-dependent gene overactivation which may partly explain the male predominance of autism. AR-dependent gene overactivation in conjunction with a DNMT mechanism for methylating oxytocin receptors could produce high arousal inputs to the amygdala resulting in aberrant socialization, a prime characteristic of autism. Dysregulation of histone methyltransferases and histone deacetylases (HDACs) associated with low activity of methyl CpG binding protein-2 at cytosine-guanine sites in genes may reduce the capacity for condensing chromatin and silencing genes in frontal cortex, a site characterized by decreased cortical interconnectivity in autistic subjects. HDAC1 inhibition can overactivate mRNA transcription, a putative mechanism for the increased number of cerebral cortical columns and local frontal cortex hyperactivity in autistic individuals. These epigenetic mechanisms underlying male predominance, aberrant social interaction, and low functioning frontal cortex may be novel targets for autism prevention and treatment strategies.

  14. Epigenetics and Autism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tafari Mbadiwe

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This review identifies mechanisms for altering DNA-histone interactions of cell chromatin to upregulate or downregulate gene expression that could serve as epigenetic targets for therapeutic interventions in autism. DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs can phosphorylate histone H3 at T6. Aided by protein kinase Cβ1, the DNMT lysine-specific demethylase-1 prevents demethylation of H3 at K4. During androgen-receptor-(AR- dependent gene activation, this sequence may produce AR-dependent gene overactivation which may partly explain the male predominance of autism. AR-dependent gene overactivation in conjunction with a DNMT mechanism for methylating oxytocin receptors could produce high arousal inputs to the amygdala resulting in aberrant socialization, a prime characteristic of autism. Dysregulation of histone methyltransferases and histone deacetylases (HDACs associated with low activity of methyl CpG binding protein-2 at cytosine-guanine sites in genes may reduce the capacity for condensing chromatin and silencing genes in frontal cortex, a site characterized by decreased cortical interconnectivity in autistic subjects. HDAC1 inhibition can overactivate mRNA transcription, a putative mechanism for the increased number of cerebral cortical columns and local frontal cortex hyperactivity in autistic individuals. These epigenetic mechanisms underlying male predominance, aberrant social interaction, and low functioning frontal cortex may be novel targets for autism prevention and treatment strategies.

  15. Epigenetic Contributions to Cognitive Aging: Disentangling Mindspan and Lifespan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spiegel, Amy M.; Sewal, Angila S.; Rapp, Peter R.

    2014-01-01

    Epigenetic modifications of chromatin structure provide a mechanistic interface for gene-environment interactions that impact the individualization of health trajectories across the lifespan. A growing body of research indicates that dysfunctional epigenetic regulation contributes to poor cognitive outcomes among aged populations. Here we review…

  16. Behavioral epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lester, Barry M; Tronick, Edward; Nestler, Eric; Abel, Ted; Kosofsky, Barry; Kuzawa, Christopher W; Marsit, Carmen J; Maze, Ian; Meaney, Michael J; Monteggia, Lisa M; Reul, Johannes M H M; Skuse, David H; Sweatt, J David; Wood, Marcelo A

    2011-05-01

    Sponsored by the New York Academy of Sciences, the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and the University of Massachusetts Boston, "Behavioral Epigenetics" was held on October 29-30, 2010 at the University of Massachusetts Boston Campus Center, Boston, Massachusetts. This meeting featured speakers and panel discussions exploring the emerging field of behavioral epigenetics, from basic biochemical and cellular mechanisms to the epigenetic modulation of normative development, developmental disorders, and psychopathology. This report provides an overview of the research presented by leading scientists and lively discussion about the future of investigation at the behavioral epigenetic level. © 2011 New York Academy of Sciences.

  17. A Quantitative Proteomic Analysis of In Vitro Assembled Chromatin*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Völker-Albert, Moritz Carl; Pusch, Miriam Caroline; Fedisch, Andreas; Schilcher, Pierre; Schmidt, Andreas; Imhof, Axel

    2016-01-01

    The structure of chromatin is critical for many aspects of cellular physiology and is considered to be the primary medium to store epigenetic information. It is defined by the histone molecules that constitute the nucleosome, the positioning of the nucleosomes along the DNA and the non-histone proteins that associate with it. These factors help to establish and maintain a largely DNA sequence-independent but surprisingly stable structure. Chromatin is extensively disassembled and reassembled during DNA replication, repair, recombination or transcription in order to allow the necessary factors to gain access to their substrate. Despite such constant interference with chromatin structure, the epigenetic information is generally well maintained. Surprisingly, the mechanisms that coordinate chromatin assembly and ensure proper assembly are not particularly well understood. Here, we use label free quantitative mass spectrometry to describe the kinetics of in vitro assembled chromatin supported by an embryo extract prepared from preblastoderm Drosophila melanogaster embryos. The use of a data independent acquisition method for proteome wide quantitation allows a time resolved comparison of in vitro chromatin assembly. A comparison of our in vitro data with proteomic studies of replicative chromatin assembly in vivo reveals an extensive overlap showing that the in vitro system can be used for investigating the kinetics of chromatin assembly in a proteome-wide manner. PMID:26811354

  18. Not just gene expression: 3D implications of chromatin modifications during sexual plant reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dukowic-Schulze, Stefanie; Liu, Chang; Chen, Changbin

    2018-01-01

    DNA methylation and histone modifications are epigenetic changes on a DNA molecule that alter the three-dimensional (3D) structure locally as well as globally, impacting chromatin looping and packaging on a larger scale. Epigenetic marks thus inform higher-order chromosome organization and placement in the nucleus. Conventional epigenetic marks are joined by chromatin modifiers like cohesins, condensins and membrane-anchoring complexes to support particularly 3D chromosome organization. The most popular consequences of epigenetic modifications are gene expression changes, but chromatin modifications have implications beyond this, particularly in actively dividing cells and during sexual reproduction. In this opinion paper, we will focus on epigenetic mechanisms and chromatin modifications during meiosis as part of plant sexual reproduction where 3D management of chromosomes and re-organization of chromatin are defining features and prime tasks in reproductive cells, not limited to modulating gene expression. Meiotic chromosome organization, pairing and synapsis of homologous chromosomes as well as distribution of meiotic double-strand breaks and resulting crossovers are presumably highly influenced by epigenetic mechanisms. Special mobile small RNAs have been described in anthers, where these so-called phasiRNAs seem to direct DNA methylation in meiotic cells. Intriguingly, many of the mentioned developmental processes make use of epigenetic changes and small RNAs in a manner other than gene expression changes. Widening our approaches and opening our mind to thinking three-dimensionally regarding epigenetics in plant development holds high promise for new discoveries and could give us a boost for further knowledge.

  19. Epigenetic events associated with breast cancer and their prevention by dietary components targeting the epigenome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Shabana I; Aumsuwan, Pranapda; Khan, Ikhlas A; Walker, Larry A; Dasmahapatra, Asok K

    2012-01-13

    Aberrant epigenetic alterations in the genome such as DNA methylation and chromatin remodeling play a significant role in breast cancer development. Since epigenetic alterations are considered to be more easily reversible compared to genetic changes, epigenetic therapy is potentially very useful in reversing some of these defects. Methylation of CpG islands is an important component of the epigenetic code, and a number of genes become abnormally methylated in breast cancer patients. Currently, several epigenetic-based synthetic drugs that can reduce DNA hypermethylation and histone deacetylation are undergoing preclinical and clinical trials. However, these chemicals are generally very toxic and do not have gene specificity. Epidemiological studies have shown that Asian women are less prone to breast cancer due to their high consumption of soy food than the Caucasian women of western countries. Moreover, complementary/and or alternative medicines are commonly used by Asian populations which are rich in bioactive ingredients known to be chemopreventive against tumorigenesis in general. Examples of such agents include dietary polyphenols, (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) from green tea, genistein from soybean, isothiocyanates from plant foods, curcumin from turmeric, resveratrol from grapes, and sulforaphane from cruciferous vegetables. These bioactive components are able to modulate epigenetic events, and their epigenetic targets are known to be associated with breast cancer prevention and therapy. This approach could facilitate the discovery and development of novel drugs for the treatment of breast cancer. In this brief review, we will summarize the epigenetic events associated with breast cancer and the potential of some of these bioactive dietary components to modulate these events and thus afford new therapeutic or preventive approaches.

  20. PTEN Interacts with Histone H1 and Controls Chromatin Condensation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Zhu Hong; Zhu, Minglu; Yang, Jingyi; Liang, Hui; He, Jinxue; He, Shiming; Wang, Pan; Kang, Xi; McNutt, Michael A.; Yin, Yuxin; Shen, Wen H.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Chromatin organization and dynamics are integral to global gene transcription. Histone modification influences chromatin status and gene expression. PTEN plays multiple roles in tumor suppression, development and metabolism. Here we report on the interplay of PTEN, histone H1 and chromatin. We show that loss of PTEN leads to dissociation of histone H1 from chromatin and decondensation of chromatin. PTEN deletion also results in elevation of histone H4 acetylation at lysine 16, an epigenetic marker for chromatin activation. We found that PTEN and histone H1 physically interact through their C-terminal domains. Disruption of the PTEN C-terminus promotes the chromatin association of MOF acetyltransferase and induces H4K16 acetylation. Hyperacetylation of H4K16 impairs the association of PTEN with histone H1, which constitutes regulatory feedback that may deteriorate chromatin stability. Our results demonstrate that PTEN controls chromatin condensation, thus influencing gene expression. We propose that PTEN regulates global gene transcription profiling through histones and chromatin remodeling. PMID:25199838

  1. Discussing epigenetics in Southern California

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    With the goal of discussing how epigenetic control and chromatin remodeling contribute to the various processes that lead to cellular plasticity and disease, this symposium marks the collaboration between the Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM) in France and the University of California, Irvine (UCI). Organized by Paolo Sassone-Corsi (UCI) and held at the Beckman Center of the National Academy of Sciences at the UCI campus December 15–16, 2011, this was the first of a series of international conferences on epigenetics dedicated to the scientific community in Southern California. The meeting also served as the official kick off for the newly formed Center for Epigenetics and Metabolism at the School of Medicine, UCI (http://cem.igb.uci.edu). PMID:22414797

  2. Epigenetic mechanisms in leukemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaidi, Sayyed K; Trombly, Daniel J; Dowdy, Christopher R; Lian, Jane B; Stein, Janet L; van Wijnen, Andre J; Stein, Gary S

    2012-09-01

    Focal organization of regulatory machinery within the interphase nucleus is linked to biological responsiveness and perturbed in cancer. Lineage determinant Runx proteins organize and assemble multi-protein complexes at sites of transcription within the nucleus and regulate both RNA polymerase II- and I-mediated gene expression. In addition, Runx proteins epigenetically control lineage determining transcriptional programs including: 1) architectural organization of macromolecular complexes in interphase, 2) regulation of gene expression through bookmarking during mitosis, and 3) microRNA-mediated translational control in the interphase nucleus. These mechanisms are compromised with the onset and progression of cancer. For example, the oncogenic AML1-ETO protein, which results from a chromosomal translocation between chromosomes 8 and 21, is expressed in nearly 25% of all acute myelogenous leukemias, disrupts Runx1 subnuclear localization during interphase and compromises transcriptional regulation. Epigenetically, the leukemic protein redirects the Runx1 DNA binding domain to leukemia-specific nuclear microenvironments, modifies regulatory protein accessibility to Runx1 target genes by imprinting repressive chromatin marks, and deregulates the microRNA (miR) profile of diseased myeloid cells. Consequently, the entire Runx1-dependent transcriptional program of myeloid cells is deregulated leading to onset and progression of acute myeloid leukemia and maintenance of leukemic phenotype. We discuss the potential of modified epigenetic landscape of leukemic cells as a viable therapeutic target. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  3. Nutritional epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    This chapter is intended to provide a timely overview of the current state of research at the intersection of nutrition and epigenetics. I begin by describing epigenetics and molecular mechanisms of eigenetic regulation, then highlight four classes of nutritional exposures currently being investiga...

  4. When Food Meets Man: the Contribution of Epigenetics to Health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emma De Fabiani

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Post-translational modifications of chromatin contribute to the epigenetic control of gene transcription. The response to food intake and individual nutrients also includes epigenetic events. Bile acids are necessary for lipid digestion and absorption, and more recently have emerged as signaling molecules. Their synthesis is transcriptionally regulated also in relation to the fasted-to-fed cycle, and interestingly, the underlying mechanisms include chromatin remodeling at promoters of key genes involved in their metabolism. Several compounds present in nutrients affect gene transcription through epigenetic mechanisms and recent studies demonstrate that, beyond the well known anti-cancer properties, they beneficially affect energy metabolism.

  5. Epigenetics of inflammation, maternal infection and nutrition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Studies have demonstrated that epigenetic changes such as DNA methylation, histone modification, and chromatin remodeling are linked to an increased inflammatory response as well as increased risk for chronic disease development. A few studies have begun to investigate whether dietary nutrients play...

  6. Metabolic-epigenetic crosstalk in macrophage activation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baardman, Jeroen; Licht, Iris; de Winther, Menno P. J.; van den Bossche, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetic enzymes are emerging as crucial controllers of macrophages, innate immune cells that determine the outcome of many inflammatory diseases. Recent studies demonstrate that the activity of particular chromatin-modifying enzymes is regulated by the availability of specific metabolites like

  7. Epigenetics: What it is about?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saade E.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetics has captured the attention of scientists in the past decades, yet its scope has been continuously changing. In this paper, we give an overview on how and why its definition has evolved and suggest several clarification on the concepts used in this field. Waddington coined the term in 1942 to describe genes interaction with each other and with their environment and insisted on dissociating these events from development. Then, Holliday and others argued that epigenetic phenomena are characterized by their heritability. However, differentiated cells can maintain their phenotypes for decades without undergoing division, which points out the limitation of the «heritability» criterion for a particular phenomenon to qualify as epigenetic. «Epigenetic stability» encompasses traits preservation in both dividing and non dividing cells. Likewise, the use of the term «epigenetic regulation» has been misleading as it overlaps with «regulation of gene expression», whereas «epigenetic information» clearly distinguishes epigenetic from genetic phenomena. Consequently, how could epigenetic information be transmitted and perpetuated? The term «epigenetic templating» has been proposed to refer to a general mechanism of perpetuation of epigenetic information that is based on the preferential activity of enzymes that deposit a particular epigenetic mark on macromolecular complexes already containing the same mark. Another issue that we address is the role of epigenetic information. Not only it is important in allowing alternative interpretations of genetic information, but it appears to be important in protecting the genome, as can be illustrated by bacterial endonucleases that targets non methylated DNA – i. e. foreign DNA – and not the endogenous methylated DNA.

  8. PREDICTION OF CHROMATIN STATES USING DNA SEQUENCE PROPERTIES

    KAUST Repository

    Bahabri, Rihab R.

    2013-06-01

    Activities of DNA are to a great extent controlled epigenetically through the internal struc- ture of chromatin. This structure is dynamic and is influenced by different modifications of histone proteins. Various combinations of epigenetic modification of histones pinpoint to different functional regions of the DNA determining the so-called chromatin states. How- ever, the characterization of chromatin states by the DNA sequence properties remains largely unknown. In this study we aim to explore whether DNA sequence patterns in the human genome can characterize different chromatin states. Using DNA sequence motifs we built binary classifiers for each chromatic state to eval- uate whether a given genomic sequence is a good candidate for belonging to a particular chromatin state. Of four classification algorithms (C4.5, Naive Bayes, Random Forest, and SVM) used for this purpose, the decision tree based classifiers (C4.5 and Random Forest) yielded best results among those we evaluated. Our results suggest that in general these models lack sufficient predictive power, although for four chromatin states (insulators, het- erochromatin, and two types of copy number variation) we found that presence of certain motifs in DNA sequences does imply an increased probability that such a sequence is one of these chromatin states.

  9. Chromatin Structure and Function

    CERN Document Server

    Wolffe, Alan P

    1999-01-01

    The Third Edition of Chromatin: Structure and Function brings the reader up-to-date with the remarkable progress in chromatin research over the past three years. It has been extensively rewritten to cover new material on chromatin remodeling, histone modification, nuclear compartmentalization, DNA methylation, and transcriptional co-activators and co-repressors. The book is written in a clear and concise fashion, with 60 new illustrations. Chromatin: Structure and Function provides the reader with a concise and coherent account of the nature, structure, and assembly of chromatin and its active

  10. Epigenetics and Epigenomics of Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yadav, Chandra Bhan; Pandey, Garima; Muthamilarasan, Mehanathan; Prasad, Manoj

    2018-01-23

    The genetic material DNA in association with histone proteins forms the complex structure called chromatin, which is prone to undergo modification through certain epigenetic mechanisms including cytosine DNA methylation, histone modifications, and small RNA-mediated methylation. Alterations in chromatin structure lead to inaccessibility of genomic DNA to various regulatory proteins such as transcription factors, which eventually modulates gene expression. Advancements in high-throughput sequencing technologies have provided the opportunity to study the epigenetic mechanisms at genome-wide levels. Epigenomic studies using high-throughput technologies will widen the understanding of mechanisms as well as functions of regulatory pathways in plant genomes, which will further help in manipulating these pathways using genetic and biochemical approaches. This technology could be a potential research tool for displaying the systematic associations of genetic and epigenetic variations, especially in terms of cytosine methylation onto the genomic region in a specific cell or tissue. A comprehensive study of plant populations to correlate genotype to epigenotype and to phenotype, and also the study of methyl quantitative trait loci (QTL) or epiGWAS, is possible by using high-throughput sequencing methods, which will further accelerate molecular breeding programs for crop improvement. Graphical Abstract.

  11. Learning epigenetic regulation from mycobacteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanjeev Khosla

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In a eukaryotic cell, the transcriptional fate of a gene is determined by the profile of the epigenetic modifications it is associated with and the conformation it adopts within the chromatin. Therefore, the function that a cell performs is dictated by the sum total of the chromatin organization and the associated epigenetic modifications of each individual gene in the genome (epigenome. As the function of a cell during development and differentiation is determined by its microenvironment, any factor that can alter this microenvironment should be able to alter the epigenome of a cell. In the study published in Nature Communications (Yaseen [2015] Nature Communications 6:8922 doi: 10.1038/ncomms9922, we show that pathogenic Mycobacterium tuberculosis has evolved strategies to exploit this pliability of the host epigenome for its own survival. We describe the identification of a methyltransferase from M. tuberculosis that functions to modulate the host epigenome by methylating a novel, non-canonical arginine, H3R42 in histone H3. In another study, we showed that the mycobacterial protein Rv2966c methylates cytosines present in non-CpG context within host genomic DNA upon infection. Proteins with ability to directly methylate host histones H3 at a novel lysine residue (H3K14 has also been identified from Legionella pnemophilia (RomA. All these studies indicate the use of non-canonical epigenetic mechanisms by pathogenic bacteria to hijack the host transcriptional machinery.

  12. Environmental Epigenetics: Crossroad between Public Health, Lifestyle, and Cancer Prevention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romani, Massimo; Pistillo, Maria Pia; Banelli, Barbara

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetics provides the key to transform the genetic information into phenotype and because of its reversibility it is considered an ideal target for therapeutic interventions. This paper reviews the basic mechanisms of epigenetic control: DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling, and ncRNA expression and their role in disease development. We describe also the influence of the environment, lifestyle, nutritional habits, and the psychological influence on epigenetic marks and how these factors are related to cancer and other diseases development. Finally we discuss the potential use of natural epigenetic modifiers in the chemoprevention of cancer to link together public health, environment, and lifestyle. PMID:26339624

  13. 2009 Epigenetics Gordon Research Conference (August 9 - 14, 2009)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jeanie Lee

    2009-08-14

    Epigenetics refers to the study of heritable changes in genome function that occur without a change in primary DNA sequence. The 2009 Gordon Conference in Epigenetics will feature discussion of various epigenetic phenomena, emerging understanding of their underlying mechanisms, and the growing appreciation that human, animal, and plant health all depend on proper epigenetic control. Special emphasis will be placed on genome-environment interactions particularly as they relate to human disease. Towards improving knowledge of molecular mechanisms, the conference will feature international leaders studying the roles of higher order chromatin structure, noncoding RNA, repeat elements, nuclear organization, and morphogenic evolution. Traditional and new model organisms are selected from plants, fungi, and metazoans.

  14. Environmental Epigenetics: Crossroad between Public Health, Lifestyle, and Cancer Prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romani, Massimo; Pistillo, Maria Pia; Banelli, Barbara

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetics provides the key to transform the genetic information into phenotype and because of its reversibility it is considered an ideal target for therapeutic interventions. This paper reviews the basic mechanisms of epigenetic control: DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling, and ncRNA expression and their role in disease development. We describe also the influence of the environment, lifestyle, nutritional habits, and the psychological influence on epigenetic marks and how these factors are related to cancer and other diseases development. Finally we discuss the potential use of natural epigenetic modifiers in the chemoprevention of cancer to link together public health, environment, and lifestyle.

  15. Chromatin Regulation and the Histone Code in HIV Latency
.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Anne-Marie W; Margolis, David M

    2017-06-01

    The formation of a latent reservoir of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection hidden from immune clearance remains a significant obstacle to approaches to eradicate HIV infection. Towards an understanding of the mechanisms of HIV persistence, there is a growing body of work implicating epigenetic regulation of chromatin in establishment and maintenance of this latent reservoir. Here we discuss recent advances in the field of chromatin regulation, specifically in our understanding of the histone code, and how these discoveries relate to our current knowledge of the chromatin mechanisms linked to HIV transcriptional repression and the reversal of latency. We also examine mechanisms unexplored in the context of HIV latency and briefly discuss current therapies aimed at the induction of proviral expression within latently infected cells. We aim to emphasize that a greater understanding of the epigenetic mechanisms which govern HIV latency could lead to new therapeutic targets for latency reversal and clearance cure strategies.

  16. MGMT expression: insights into its regulation. 1. Epigenetic factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iatsyshyna A. P.

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT is the DNA repair enzyme responsible for removing of alkylation adducts from the O6-guanine in DNA. Despite MGMT prevents mutations and cell death, this enzyme can provide resistance of cancer cells to alkylating agents of chemotherapy. The high intra- and inter-individual variations in the human MGMT expression level have been observed indicating to a complicated regulation of this gene. This review is focused on the study of epigenetic factors which could be potentially involved in regulation of the human MGMT gene expression. These include chromatin remodeling via histone modifications and DNA methylation of promoter region and gene body, as well as RNA-based mechanisms, alternative splicing, protein post- translational modifications, and other.

  17. Epigenetic mechanisms underlying nervous system diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qureshi, Irfan A; Mehler, Mark F

    2018-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms act as control systems for modulating genomic structure and activity in response to evolving profiles of cell-extrinsic, cell-cell, and cell-intrinsic signals. These dynamic processes are responsible for mediating cell- and tissue-specific gene expression and function and gene-gene and gene-environmental interactions. The major epigenetic mechanisms include DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation; histone protein posttranslational modifications, nucleosome remodeling/repositioning, and higher-order chromatin reorganization; noncoding RNA regulation; and RNA editing. These mechanisms are intimately involved in executing fundamental genomic programs, including gene transcription, posttranscriptional RNA processing and transport, translation, X-chromosome inactivation, genomic imprinting, retrotransposon regulation, DNA replication, and DNA repair and the maintenance of genomic stability. For the nervous system, epigenetics offers a novel and robust framework for explaining how brain development and aging occur, neural cellular diversity is generated, synaptic and neural network connectivity and plasticity are mediated, and complex cognitive and behavioral phenotypes are inherited transgenerationally. Epigenetic factors and processes are, not surprisingly, implicated in nervous system disease pathophysiology through several emerging paradigms - mutations and genetic variation in genes encoding epigenetic factors; impairments in epigenetic factor expression, localization, and function; epigenetic mechanisms modulating disease-associated factors and pathways; and the presence of deregulated epigenetic profiles in central and peripheral tissues. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Epigenetic regulation of inducible gene expression in the immune system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Pek Siew; Li, Jasmine; Holloway, Adele F; Rao, Sudha

    2013-07-01

    T cells are exquisitely poised to respond rapidly to pathogens and have proved an instructive model for exploring the regulation of inducible genes. Individual genes respond to antigenic stimulation in different ways, and it has become clear that the interplay between transcription factors and the chromatin platform of individual genes governs these responses. Our understanding of the complexity of the chromatin platform and the epigenetic mechanisms that contribute to transcriptional control has expanded dramatically in recent years. These mechanisms include the presence/absence of histone modification marks, which form an epigenetic signature to mark active or inactive genes. These signatures are dynamically added or removed by epigenetic enzymes, comprising an array of histone-modifying enzymes, including the more recently recognized chromatin-associated signalling kinases. In addition, chromatin-remodelling complexes physically alter the chromatin structure to regulate chromatin accessibility to transcriptional regulatory factors. The advent of genome-wide technologies has enabled characterization of the chromatin landscape of T cells in terms of histone occupancy, histone modification patterns and transcription factor association with specific genomic regulatory regions, generating a picture of the T-cell epigenome. Here, we discuss the multi-layered regulation of inducible gene expression in the immune system, focusing on the interplay between transcription factors, and the T-cell epigenome, including the role played by chromatin remodellers and epigenetic enzymes. We will also use IL2, a key inducible cytokine gene in T cells, as an example of how the different layers of epigenetic mechanisms regulate immune responsive genes during T-cell activation. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Higher order chromatin organization in cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, Karen L.; Feinberg, Andrew P.

    2013-01-01

    In spite of our increased understanding of how genomes are dysregulated in cancer and a plethora of molecular diagnostic tools, the front line and ‘gold standard’ detection of cancer remains the pathologist’s detection of gross changes in cellular and tissue structure, most strikingly nuclear dis-organization. In fact, for over 140 years it has been noted that nuclear morphology is often disrupted in cancer. Even today, nuclear morphology measures include nuclear size, shape, DNA content (ploidy) and ‘chromatin organization’. Given the importance of nuclear shape to diagnoses of cancer phenotypes, it is surprising and frustrating that we currently lack a detailed understanding to explain these changes and how they might arise and relate to molecular events in the cell. It is an implicit hypothesis that perturbation of chromatin and epigenetic signatures may lead to alterations in nuclear structure (or vice versa) and that these perturbations lie at the heart of cancer genesis. In this review, we attempt to synthesize research leading to our current understanding on how chromatin interactions at the nuclear lamina, epigenetic modulation and gene regulation may intersect in cancer and offer a perspective on critical experiments that would help clarify how nuclear architecture may contribute to the cancerous phenotype. We also discuss the historical understanding of nuclear structure in normal cells and as a diagnostic in cancer. PMID:23266653

  20. Epigenetic characteristics of the mitotic chromosome in 1D and 3D.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oomen, Marlies E; Dekker, Job

    2017-04-01

    While chromatin characteristics in interphase are widely studied, characteristics of mitotic chromatin and their inheritance through mitosis are still poorly understood. During mitosis, chromatin undergoes dramatic changes: transcription stalls, chromatin-binding factors leave the chromatin, histone modifications change and chromatin becomes highly condensed. Many key insights into mitotic chromosome state and conformation have come from extensive microscopy studies over the last century. Over the last decade, the development of 3C-based techniques has enabled the study of higher order chromosome organization during mitosis in a genome-wide manner. During mitosis, chromosomes lose their cell type-specific and locus-dependent chromatin organization that characterizes interphase chromatin and fold into randomly positioned loop arrays. Upon exit of mitosis, cells are capable of quickly rearranging the chromosome conformation to form the cell type-specific interphase organization again. The information that enables this rearrangement after mitotic exit is thought to be encoded at least in part in mitotic bookmarks, e.g. histone modifications and variants, histone remodelers, chromatin factors, and non-coding RNA. Here we give an overview of the chromosomal organization and epigenetic characteristics of interphase and mitotic chromatin in vertebrates. Second, we describe different ways in which mitotic bookmarking enables epigenetic memory of the features of interphase chromatin through mitosis. And third, we explore the role of epigenetic modifications and mitotic bookmarking in cell differentiation.

  1. Epigenetic Changes in Diabetes and Cardiovascular Risk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keating, Samuel T; Plutzky, Jorge; El-Osta, Assam

    2016-01-01

    Cardiovascular complications remain the leading causes of morbidity and premature mortality in patients with diabetes. Studies in humans and preclinical models demonstrate lasting gene expression changes in the vasculopathies initiated by previous exposure to high glucose concentrations and the associated overproduction of reactive oxygen species. The molecular signatures of chromatin architectures that sensitize the genome to these and other cardiometabolic risk factors of the diabetic milieu are increasingly implicated in the biologic memory underlying cardiovascular complications and now widely considered as promising therapeutic targets. Atherosclerosis is a complex heterocellular disease where the contributing cell types possess distinct epigenomes shaping diverse gene expression. While the extent that pathological chromatin changes can be manipulated in human cardiovascular disease remains to be established, the clinical applicability of epigenetic interventions will be greatly advanced by a deeper understanding of the cell type-specific roles played by writers, erasers, and readers of chromatin modifications in the diabetic vasculature. This review details a current perspective of epigenetic mechanisms of macrovascular disease in diabetes, and highlights recent key descriptions of chromatinized changes associated with persistent gene expression in endothelial, smooth muscle, and circulating immune cells relevant to atherosclerosis. Furthermore we discuss the challenges associated with pharmacological targeting of epigenetic networks to correct abnormal or deregulated gene expression as a strategy to alleviate the clinical burden of diabetic cardiovascular disease. PMID:27230637

  2. Stress, Epigenetics, and Alcoholism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moonat, Sachin; Pandey, Subhash C.

    2012-01-01

    Acute and chronic stressors have been associated with alterations in mood and increased anxiety that may eventually result in the development of stress-related psychiatric disorders. Stress and associated disorders, including anxiety, are key factors in the development of alcoholism because alcohol consumption can temporarily reduce the drinker’s dysphoria. One molecule that may help mediate the relationship between stress and alcohol consumption is brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a protein that regulates the structure and function of the sites where two nerve cells interact and exchange nerve signals (i.e., synapses) and which is involved in numerous physiological processes. Aberrant regulation of BDNF signaling and alterations in synapse activity (i.e., synaptic plasticity) have been associated with the pathophysiology of stress-related disorders and alcoholism. Mechanisms that contribute to the regulation of genetic information without modification of the DNA sequence (i.e., epigenetic mechanisms) may play a role in the complex control of BDNF signaling and synaptic plasticity—for example, by modifying the structure of the DNA–protein complexes (i.e., chromatin) that make up the chromosomes and thereby modulating the expression of certain genes. Studies regarding the epigenetic control of BDNF signaling and synaptic plasticity provide a promising direction to understand the mechanisms mediating the interaction between stress and alcoholism. PMID:23584115

  3. The physics of chromatin

    OpenAIRE

    Schiessel, Helmut

    2003-01-01

    Recent progress has been made in the understanding of the physical properties of chromatin -- the dense complex of DNA and histone proteins that occupies the nuclei of plant and animal cells. Here I will focus on the two lowest levels of the hierarchy of DNA folding into the chromatin complex: (i) the nucleosome, the chromatin repeating unit consisting of a globular aggregate of eight histone proteins with the DNA wrapped around: its overcharging, the DNA unwrapping transition, the ''sliding'...

  4. Three epigenetic information channels and their different roles in evolution

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Shea, N.; Pen, I.; Uller, T.

    There is increasing evidence for epigenetically mediated transgenerational inheritance across taxa. However, the evolutionary implications of such alternative mechanisms of inheritance remain unclear. Herein, we show that epigenetic mechanisms can serve two fundamentally different functions in

  5. Epigenetics, Behaviour, and Health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Szyf Moshe

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available The long-term effects of behaviour and environmental exposures, particularly during childhood, on health outcomes are well documented. Particularly thought provoking is the notion that exposures to different social environments have a long-lasting impact on human physical health. However, the mechanisms mediating the effects of the environment are still unclear. In the last decade, the main focus of attention was the genome, and interindividual genetic polymorphisms were sought after as the principal basis for susceptibility to disease. However, it is becoming clear that recent dramatic increases in the incidence of certain human pathologies, such as asthma and type 2 diabetes, cannot be explained just on the basis of a genetic drift. It is therefore extremely important to unravel the molecular links between the "environmental" exposure, which is believed to be behind this emerging incidence in certain human pathologies, and the disease's molecular mechanisms. Although it is clear that most human pathologies involve long-term changes in gene function, these might be caused by mechanisms other than changes in the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA sequence. The genome is programmed by the epigenome, which is composed of chromatin and a covalent modification of DNA by methylation. It is postulated here that "epigenetic" mechanisms mediate the effects of behavioural and environmental exposures early in life, as well as lifelong environmental exposures and the susceptibility to disease later in life. In contrast to genetic sequence differences, epigenetic aberrations are potentially reversible, raising the hope for interventions that will be able to reverse deleterious epigenetic programming.

  6. SUMO and Chromatin Remodeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wotton, David; Pemberton, Lucy F; Merrill-Schools, Jacqueline

    2017-01-01

    Many of the known SUMO substrates are nuclear proteins, which regulate gene expression and chromatin dynamics. Sumoylation, in general, appears to correlate with decreased transcriptional activity, and in many cases modulation of the chromatin template is implicated. Sumoylation of the core histones is associated with transcriptional silencing, and transcription factor sumoylation can decrease gene expression by promoting recruitment of chromatin modifying enzymes. Additionally, sumoylation of transcriptional corepressors and chromatin remodeling enzymes can influence interactions with other transcriptional regulators, and alter their enzymatic activity. In some cases, proteins that are components of transcriptional corepressor complexes have been shown to be SUMO E3 ligases, further emphasizing the integration of sumoylation with the regulation of chromatin remodeling. Despite the evidence suggesting that sumoylation is primarily repressive for access to chromatin, recent analyses suggest that protein sumoylation on the chromatin template may play important roles at highly expressed genes. Elucidating the dynamic interplay of sumoylation with other post-translational modifications of histones and chromatin associated proteins will be key to fully understanding the regulation of access to the chromatin template.

  7. Epigenetic mechanisms in gastric cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gigek, Carolina Oliveira; Chen, Elizabeth Suchi; Calcagno, Danielle Queiroz; Wisnieski, Fernanda; Burbano, Rommel Rodriguez; Smith, Marilia Arruda Cardoso

    2012-06-01

    Cancer is considered one of the major health issues worldwide, and gastric cancer accounted for 8% of total cases and 10% of total deaths in 2008. Gastric cancer is considered an age-related disease, and the total number of newly diagnosed cases has been increasing as a result of the higher life expectancy. Therefore, the basic mechanisms underlying gastric tumorigenesis is worth investigation. This review provides an overview of the epigenetic mechanisms, such as DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling complex and miRNA, involved in gastric cancer. As the studies in gastric cancer continue, the mapping of an epigenome code is not far for this disease. In conclusion, an epigenetic therapy might appear in the not too distant future.

  8. Epigenetic Regulation of Angiogenesis by JARID1B-Induced Repression of HOXA5

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fork, Christian; Gu, Lunda; Hitzel, Juliane

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Altering endothelial biology through epigenetic modifiers is an attractive novel concept, which is, however, just in its beginnings. We therefore set out to identify chromatin modifiers important for endothelial gene expression and contributing to angiogenesis. APPROACH AND RESULTS...

  9. Chromatin remodeling effects on enhancer activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-González, Estela; Escamilla-Del-Arenal, Martín; Arzate-Mejía, Rodrigo; Recillas-Targa, Félix

    2016-08-01

    During organism development, a diversity of cell types emerges with disparate, yet stable profiles of gene expression with distinctive cellular functions. In addition to gene promoters, the genome contains enhancer regulatory sequences, which are implicated in cellular specialization by facilitating cell-type and tissue-specific gene expression. Enhancers are DNA binding elements characterized by highly sophisticated and various mechanisms of action allowing for the specific interaction of general and tissue-specific transcription factors (TFs). However, eukaryotic organisms package their genetic material into chromatin, generating a physical barrier for TFs to interact with their cognate sequences. The ability of TFs to bind DNA regulatory elements is also modulated by changes in the chromatin structure, including histone modifications, histone variants, ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling, and the methylation status of DNA. Furthermore, it has recently been revealed that enhancer sequences are also transcribed into a set of enhancer RNAs with regulatory potential. These interdependent processes act in the context of a complex network of chromatin interactions, which together contributes to a renewed vision of how gene activation is coordinated in a cell-type-dependent manner. In this review, we describe the interplay between genetic and epigenetic aspects associated with enhancers and discuss their possible roles on enhancer function.

  10. Behavioral epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, David S

    2017-01-01

    Why do we grow up to have the traits we do? Most 20th century scientists answered this question by referring only to our genes and our environments. But recent discoveries in the emerging field of behavioral epigenetics have revealed factors at the interface between genes and environments that also play crucial roles in development. These factors affect how genes work; scientists now know that what matters as much as which genes you have (and what environments you encounter) is how your genes are affected by their contexts. The discovery that what our genes do depends in part on our experiences has shed light on how Nature and Nurture interact at the molecular level inside of our bodies. Data emerging from the world's behavioral epigenetics laboratories support the idea that a person's genes alone cannot determine if, for example, he or she will end up shy, suffering from cardiovascular disease, or extremely smart. Among the environmental factors that can influence genetic activity are parenting styles, diets, and social statuses. In addition to influencing how doctors treat diseases, discoveries about behavioral epigenetics are likely to alter how biologists think about evolution, because some epigenetic effects of experience appear to be transmissible from generation to generation. This domain of research will likely change how we think about the origins of human nature. WIREs Syst Biol Med 2017, 9:e1333. doi: 10.1002/wsbm.1333 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Re: Epigenetics of Cellular Reprogramming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fehmi Narter

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available EDITORIAL COMMENT Cells have some specific molecular and physiological properties that act their functional process. However, many cells have an ability of efficient transition from one type to another. This ability is named plasticity. This process occurs due to epigenetic reprogramming that involves changes in transcription and chromatin structure. Some changes during reprogramming that have been identified in recent years as genomic demethylation (both histone and DNA, histone acetylation and loss of heterochromatin during the development of many diseases such as infertility and cancer progression. In this review, the authors focused on the latest work addressing the mechanisms surrounding the epigenetic regulation of various types of reprogramming, including somatic cell nuclear transfer, cell fusion and transcription factor- and microRNA-induced pluripotency. There are many responsible factors such as genes, cytokines, proteins, co-factors (i.e. vitamin C in this local area network. The exact mechanisms by which these changes are achieved and the detailed interplay between the players responsible, however, remain relatively unclear. In the treatment of diseases, such as infertility, urooncology, reconstructive urology, etc., epigenetic changes and cellular reprogramming will be crucial in the near future. Central to achieving that goal is a more thorough understanding of the epigenetic state of fully reprogrammed cells. By the progress of researches on this topic, new treatment modalities will be identified for these diseases.

  12. Human papillomaviruses in epigenetic regulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durzynska, Julia; Lesniewicz, Krzysztof; Poreba, Elzbieta

    Human Papillomaviruses (HPVs) are double-stranded DNA viruses, that infect epithelial cells and are etiologically involved in the development of human cancer. Today, over 200 types of human papillomaviruses are known. They are divided into low-risk and high-risk HPVs depending on their potential to induce carcinogenesis, driven by two major viral oncoproteins, E6 and E7. By interacting with cellular partners, these proteins are involved in interdependent viral and cell cycles in stratified differentiating epithelium, and concomitantly induce epigenetic changes in infected cells and those undergoing malignant transformation. E6 and E7 oncoproteins interact with and/or modulate expression of many proteins involved in epigenetic regulation, including DNA methyltransferases, histone-modifying enzymes and subunits of chromatin remodeling complexes, thereby influencing host cell transcription program. Furthermore, HPV oncoproteins modulate expression of cellular micro RNAs. Most of these epigenetic actions in a complex dynamic interplay participate in the maintenance of persistent infection, cell transformation, and development of invasive cancer by a considerable deregulation of tumor suppressor and oncogenes. In this study, we have undertaken to discuss a number of studies concerning epigenetic regulations in HPV-dependent cells and to focus on those that have biological relevance to cancer progression. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. HACking the centromere chromatin code: insights from human artificial chromosomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergmann, Jan H; Martins, Nuno M C; Larionov, Vladimir; Masumoto, Hiroshi; Earnshaw, William C

    2012-07-01

    The centromere is a specialized chromosomal region that serves as the assembly site of the kinetochore. At the centromere, CENP-A nucleosomes form part of a chromatin landscape termed centrochromatin. This chromatin environment conveys epigenetic marks regulating kinetochore formation. Recent work sheds light on the intricate relationship between centrochromatin state, the CENP-A assembly pathway and the maintenance of centromere function. Here, we review the emerging picture of how chromatin affects mammalian kinetochore formation. We place particular emphasis on data obtained from Human Artificial Chromosome (HAC) biology and the targeted engineering of centrochromatin using synthetic HACs. We discuss implications of these findings, which indicate that a delicate balance of histone modifications and chromatin state dictates both de novo centromere formation and the maintenance of centromere identity in dividing cell populations.

  14. Probing Chromatin-modifying Enzymes with Chemical Tools

    KAUST Repository

    Fischle, Wolfgang

    2016-02-04

    Chromatin is the universal template of genetic information in all eukaryotic organisms. Chemical modifications of the DNA-packaging histone proteins and the DNA bases are crucial signaling events in directing the use and readout of eukaryotic genomes. The enzymes that install and remove these chromatin modifications as well as the proteins that bind these marks govern information that goes beyond the sequence of DNA. Therefore, these so-called epigenetic regulators are intensively studied and represent promising drug targets in modern medicine. We summarize and discuss recent advances in the field of chemical biology that have provided chromatin research with sophisticated tools for investigating the composition, activity, and target sites of chromatin modifying enzymes and reader proteins.

  15. Epigenetic Mechanisms of Depression and Antidepressants Action

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vialou, Vincent; Feng, Jian; Robison, Alfred J.; Nestler, Eric J.

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms, which control chromatin structure and function, mediate changes in gene expression that occur in response to diverse stimuli. Recent research has established that environmental events and behavioral experience induce epigenetic changes at particular gene loci that help shape neuronal plasticity and function, and hence behavior, and that some of these changes can be very stable and even persist for a lifetime. Increasing evidence supports the hypothesis that aberrations in chromatin remodeling and subsequent effects on gene expression within limbic brain regions contribute to the pathogenesis of depression and other stress-related disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder and other anxiety syndromes. Likewise, the gradually developing but persistent therapeutic effects of antidepressant medications may be achieved in part via epigenetic mechanisms. This review discusses recent advances in understanding epigenetic regulation of stress-related disorders and focuses on three distinct aspects of stress-induced epigenetic pathology: the effects of stress and antidepressant treatment during adulthood, the life-long effects of early life stress on subsequent stress vulnerability, and the possible trans-generational transmission of stress-induced abnormalities. PMID:23020296

  16. Histone chaperone networks shaping chromatin function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hammond, Colin; Strømme, Caroline Bianchi; Huang, Hongda

    2017-01-01

    The association of histones with specific chaperone complexes is important for their folding, oligomerization, post-translational modification, nuclear import, stability, assembly and genomic localization. In this way, the chaperoning of soluble histones is a key determinant of histone availability...... and fate, which affects all chromosomal processes, including gene expression, chromosome segregation and genome replication and repair. Here, we review the distinct structural and functional properties of the expanding network of histone chaperones. We emphasize how chaperones cooperate in the histone...... chaperone network and via co-chaperone complexes to match histone supply with demand, thereby promoting proper nucleosome assembly and maintaining epigenetic information by recycling modified histones evicted from chromatin....

  17. Epigenetic regulatory elements associate with specific histone modifications to prevent silencing of telomeric genes.

    OpenAIRE

    Majocchi, S.; Aritonovska, E.; Mermod, N.

    2014-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells, transgene expression levels may be limited by an unfavourable chromatin structure at the integration site. Epigenetic regulators are DNA sequences which may protect transgenes from such position effect. We evaluated different epigenetic regulators for their ability to protect transgene expression at telomeres, which are commonly associated to low or inconsistent expression because of their repressive chromatin environment. Although to variable extents, matrix attachment r...

  18. [The alchemy--epigenetic regulation of pluripotency].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bem, Joanna; Grabowska, Iwona

    2013-01-01

    Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) self renew their population, also they are pluripotent which means they can differentiate into any given cell type. In specific culture conditions they remain undifferentiated. On the cellular level pluripotency is determined by many transcription factors, e.g. Sox2, Nanog, Klf4, Oct4. Epigenetic regulation is also crucial for both self renewal and pluripotency. This review focuses on epigenetic mechanisms, among them DNA methylation, posttranslational histone modifications, ATP dependent chromatin remodeling and miRNAs interactions. These mechanisms affect embryonic stem cells functions keeping them poised for differentiation.

  19. Epigenetic Aspects of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrike Schmidt

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Development of psychiatric diseases such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD invokes, as with most complex diseases, both genetic and environmental factors. The era of genome-wide high throughput technologies has sparked the initiation of genotype screenings in large cohorts of diseased and control individuals, but had limited success in identification of disease causing genetic variants. It has become evident that these efforts at the genomic level need to be complemented with endeavours in elucidating the proteome, transcriptome and epigenetic profiles. Epigenetics is attractive in particular because there is accumulating evidence that the lasting impact of adverse life events is reflected in certain covalent modifications of the chromatin.

  20. Epigenetics of induced pluripotency, the seven-headed dragon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djuric, Ugljesa; Ellis, James

    2010-03-15

    Induction of pluripotency from somatic cells by exogenous transcription factors is made possible by a variety of epigenetic changes that take place during the reprogramming process. The derivation of fully reprogrammed induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells is achieved through establishment of embryonic stem cell (ESC)-like epigenetic architecture permitting the reactivation of key endogenous pluripotency-related genes, establishment of appropriate bivalent chromatin domains and DNA hypomethylation of genomic heterochromatic regions. Restructuring of the epigenetic landscape, however, is a very inefficient process and the vast majority of the induced cells fail to complete the reprogramming process. Optimal ESC-like epigenetic reorganization is necessary for all reliable downstream uses of iPS cells, including in vitro modeling of disease and clinical applications. Here, we discuss the key advancements in the understanding of dynamic epigenetic changes taking place over the course of the reprogramming process and how aberrant epigenetic remodeling may impact downstream applications of iPS cell technology.

  1. Epigenetic Reprogramming of Muscle Progenitors: Inspiration for Clinical Therapies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Consalvi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In the context of regenerative medicine, based on the potential of stem cells to restore diseased tissues, epigenetics is becoming a pivotal area of interest. Therapeutic interventions that promote tissue and organ regeneration have as primary objective the selective control of gene expression in adult stem cells. This requires a deep understanding of the epigenetic mechanisms controlling transcriptional programs in tissue progenitors. This review attempts to elucidate the principle epigenetic regulations responsible of stem cells differentiation. In particular we focus on the current understanding of the epigenetic networks that regulate differentiation of muscle progenitors by the concerted action of chromatin-modifying enzymes and noncoding RNAs. The novel exciting role of exosome-bound microRNA in mediating epigenetic information transfer is also discussed. Finally we show an overview of the epigenetic strategies and therapies that aim to potentiate muscle regeneration and counteract the progression of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD.

  2. Molecular targets of epigenetic regulation and effectors of environmental influences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choudhuri, Supratim; Cui Yue; Klaassen, Curtis D.

    2010-01-01

    The true understanding of what we currently define as epigenetics evolved over time as our knowledge on DNA methylation and chromatin modifications and their effects on gene expression increased. The current explosion of research on epigenetics and the increasing documentation of the effects of various environmental factors on DNA methylation, chromatin modification, as well as on the expression of small non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) have expanded the scope of research on the etiology of various diseases including cancer. The current review briefly discusses the molecular mechanisms of epigenetic regulation and expands the discussion with examples on the role of environment, such as the immediate environment during development, in inducing epigenetic changes and modulating gene expression.

  3. Clinical applications of epigenetic markers and epigenetic profiling in myeloid malignancies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDevitt, Michael A

    2012-02-01

    Aberrant DNA methylation is frequent in the myeloid malignancies, particularly myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and acute myelogenous leukemia (AML). Promoter CpG methylation is correlated with silencing of tumor-suppressor genes (TSGs) in specific pathways that are also targets of mutation or other mechanisms of inactivation, and is thought to contribute to disease progression and poor prognosis. Epigenetic contributions to myeloid pathogenesis are more complex. Examples include TSG inactivation and oncogenic activation associated with formation of altered chromatin separate from CpG methylation. Epigenetic dysregulation occurs at multiple disease stages and at non-CpG island genomic sites, and also includes genomic hypomethylation and small RNA mechanisms of epigenetic regulation. Identification of recurrent mutations in potential epigenetic regulators, including TET2, IDH1, IDH2, DNMT3A, UTX, and ASXL1, were recently described. Accordingly, therapeutics directed towards epigenetic mechanisms including methylation inhibitors and histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors have had some clinical success when applied to MDS and AML. However, identification of the underlying mechanisms associated with clinical responses and drug resistance remain enigmatic. Remarkably, in spite of significant molecular and translational progress, there are currently no epigenetic biomarkers in widespread clinical use. In this review, we explore the potential applications of epigenetic biomarker discovery, including epigenetic profiling for myeloid malignancy pathogenesis understanding, diagnostic classification, and development of effective treatment paradigms for these generally considered poor prognosis disorders. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  4. Genome-Wide Analysis of the Distinct Types of Chromatin Interactions in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jingjing; Zhou, Yincong; Li, Xue; Meng, Xianwen; Fan, Miao; Chen, Hongjun; Xue, Jitong; Chen, Ming

    2017-01-01

    The three-dimensional shapes of chromosomes regulate gene expression and genome function. Our knowledge of the role of chromatin interaction is evolving rapidly. Here, we present a study of global chromatin interaction patterns in Arabidopsis thaliana. High-throughput experimental techniques have been developed to map long-range interactions within chromatin. We have integrated data from multiple experimental sources including Hi-C, BS-seq, ChIP-chip and ChIP-seq data for 17 epigenetic marks and 35 transcription factors. We identified seven groups of interacting loci, which can be distinguished by their epigenetic profiles. Furthermore, the seven groups of interacting loci can be divided into three types of chromatin linkages based on expression status. We observed that two interacting loci sometimes share common epigenetic and transcription factor-binding profiles. Different groups of loci display very different relationships between epigenetic marks and the binding of transcription factors. Distinctive types of chromatin linkages exhibit different gene expression profiles. Our study unveils an entirely unexplored regulatory interaction, linking epigenetic profiles, transcription factor binding and the three-dimensional spatial organization of the Arabidopsis nuclear genome. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. Chromatin structure and replication origins: determinants of chromosome replication and nuclear organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Owen K; Aladjem, Mirit I

    2014-10-09

    The DNA replication program is, in part, determined by the epigenetic landscape that governs local chromosome architecture and directs chromosome duplication. Replication must coordinate with other biochemical processes occurring concomitantly on chromatin, such as transcription and remodeling, to insure accurate duplication of both genetic and epigenetic features and to preserve genomic stability. The importance of genome architecture and chromatin looping in coordinating cellular processes on chromatin is illustrated by two recent sets of discoveries. First, chromatin-associated proteins that are not part of the core replication machinery were shown to affect the timing of DNA replication. These chromatin-associated proteins could be working in concert, or perhaps in competition, with the transcriptional machinery and with chromatin modifiers to determine the spatial and temporal organization of replication initiation events. Second, epigenetic interactions are mediated by DNA sequences that determine chromosomal replication. In this review, we summarize recent findings and current models linking spatial and temporal regulation of the replication program with epigenetic signaling. We discuss these issues in the context of the genome's three-dimensional structure with an emphasis on events occurring during the initiation of DNA replication. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  6. New Epigenetic Therapeutic Intervention for Metastatic Breast Cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-04-01

    11/09/2016 University of Wisconsin-Madison, Cancer Biology Seminar Series, Madison, WI, “From Epigenetic Mechanism to Targeted Therapy” 12/22/2016...Transcription” 02/16/2017 Purdue University Cancer Center, West Lafayette, IN, “From Epigenetic Structural Mechanism to Targeted Therapy” 7 Binhua P...171,284/yr, d.c. “Structure and Mechanism of Protein Modules in Chromatin Biology” This project aims to conduct structural and biochemical analyses

  7. Epigenetics of reprogramming to induced pluripotency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papp, Bernadett; Plath, Kathrin

    2013-01-01

    Reprogramming to induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) proceeds in a step-wise manner with reprogramming factor binding, transcription, and chromatin states changing during transitions. Evidence is emerging that epigenetic priming events early in the process may be critical for pluripotency induction later. Chromatin and its regulators are important controllers of reprogramming, and reprogramming factor levels, stoichiometry, and extracellular conditions influence the outcome. The rapid progress in characterizing reprogramming is benefiting applications of iPSCs and already enabling the rational design of novel reprogramming factor-cocktails. However, recent studies have uncovered an epigenetic instability of the X-chromosome in human iPSCs that warrants careful consideration. PMID:23498940

  8. Chromatin states modify network motifs contributing to cell-specific functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Hongying; Liu, Tingting; Liu, Ling; Zhang, Guanxiong; Pang, Lin; Yu, Fulong; Fan, Huihui; Ping, Yanyan; Wang, Li; Xu, Chaohan; Xiao, Yun; Li, Xia

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetic modification can affect many important biological processes, such as cell proliferation and apoptosis. It can alter chromatin conformation and contribute to gene regulation. To investigate how chromatin states associated with network motifs, we assembled chromatin state-modified regulatory networks by combining 269 ChIP-seq data and chromatin states in four cell types. We found that many chromatin states were significantly associated with network motifs, especially for feedforward loops (FFLs). These distinct chromatin state compositions contribute to different expression levels and translational control of targets in FFLs. Strikingly, the chromatin state-modified FFLs were highly cell-specific and, to a large extent, determined cell-selective functions, such as the embryonic stem cell-specific bivalent modification-related FFL with an important role in poising developmentally important genes for expression. Besides, comparisons of chromatin state-modified FFLs between cancerous/stem and primary cell lines revealed specific type of chromatin state alterations that may act together with motif structural changes cooperatively contribute to cell-to-cell functional differences. Combination of these alterations could be helpful in prioritizing candidate genes. Together, this work highlights that a dynamic epigenetic dimension can help network motifs to control cell-specific functions. PMID:26169043

  9. Epigenetics and stroke risk – beyond the static DNA code

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marsden PA

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Charles C Matouk,1 Paul J Turgeon,2 Philip A Marsden2,31Department of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA; 2Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada; 3Keenan Research Centre and Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, St Michael's Hospital, Toronto, CanadaAbstract: Advances in high-throughput genome sequencing and genome-wide association studies indicate that only a fraction of estimated variability in stroke risk can be explained by genetic variation in protein-coding genes alone. Epigenetics is defined as chromatin-based mechanisms important in the regulation of gene expression that do not involve changes in the DNA sequence per se. Epigenetics represents an alternative explanation for how traditional risk factors confer increased stroke risk, provide a newer paradigm to explain heritability not explained by genetic variation, and provide insight into the link between how the environment of a cell can interact with the static DNA code. The nuclear-based mechanisms that contribute to epigenetic gene regulation can be separated into three distinct but highly interrelated processes: DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation; histone density and posttranslational modifications; and RNA-based mechanisms. Together, they offer a newer perspective on transcriptional control paradigms in blood vessels and provide a molecular basis for understanding how the environment impacts the genome to modify stroke susceptibility. This alternative view for transcriptional regulation allows a reassessment of the cis/trans model and even helps explain some of the limitations of current approaches to genetic-based screens. For instance, how does the environment exert chronic effects on gene expression in blood vessels after weeks or years? When a vascular cell divides, how is this information transmitted to daughter cells? This review provides an introduction to epigenetic concepts and a

  10. Epigenetic mismatches with mutated transcribing genes at leukemogenic S-phase binding/start sites--potential targets for therapy with enzyme inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prindull, Gregor

    2012-11-01

    This review focuses on gene transcription patterns of leukemogenic S-phases in mitotic cell cycles for identification of enzymatic reactions as potential targets for epigenetics-based drug therapy. Transcription of leukemic genes is triggered by reprogrammed transcription factors (TFs) mediated by chromatin histones. Reprogrammed TFs originate from transcriptional alterations of CpG methylation patterns of mutated epigenetic genes. They preserve memory information of earlier leukemogenic exposures, even transgenerationally via the zygote, through small (e.g. pi)RNA transmitted between cells by exosomes. Normally, reprogrammed TFs are enzymatically silenced and stored as markers in heterochromatic domains. Failure of intra S-phase surveillance (IS) permits the formation and continual operation of DNA replication forks in spite of persisting genotoxic stress. Silenced TFs are re-activated by euchromatin, most likely through leakages of insulator barriers of cis-regulating chromatin modulators (CRM) that normally separate hetero- from euchromatin domains. During transport by sliding nucleosomes, reprogrammed leukemogenic TFs are misplaced at transcription factor binding-/starting-sites (TFBS /TSS) allowing them to interact with and trigger replication of mutated leukemic genes. Interactions of enzymatically reprogrammed TFs, transcribed from mutated epigenetic genes, with replicating leukemic genes at TFBS/TSSs are key driving forces in leukemogenesis. Probably, epigenetic genes, although mutated, still retain their control of replication of leukemic genes. Epigenetics-based enzyme inhibitors must target reprogrammed TFs. Prudently, therapeutic corrections should be introduced within the frame of conventional, cytoreductive treatment protocols. Alternatively, reprogrammed TFs could be replaced by cell populations with regular TF production. Clinically, classification of leukemias should be based on their epigenetic presentation.

  11. Quantitative interaction proteomics and genome-wide profiling of epigenetic histone marks and their readers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vermeulen, Michiel; Eberl, H Christian; Matarese, Filomena

    2010-01-01

    Trimethyl-lysine (me3) modifications on histones are the most stable epigenetic marks and they control chromatin-mediated regulation of gene expression. Here, we determine proteins that bind these marks by high-accuracy, quantitative mass spectrometry. These chromatin "readers" are assigned...

  12. Conference Scene: epigenetics eh! The first formal meeting of the Canadian epigenetics community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Underhill, Alan; Hendzel, Michael J

    2011-08-01

    In recognition of Canada's longstanding interest in epigenetics - and a particular linguistic interjection - the inaugural 'Epigenetics, Eh!' conference was held between 4-7 May 2011 in London, Ontario. The meeting struck an excellent balance between Canadian and international leaders in epigenetic research while also providing a venue to showcase up-and-coming talent. Almost without exception, presentations touched on the wide-ranging and severe consequences of epigenetic dysfunction, as well as current and emerging therapeutic opportunities. While gaining a deeper understanding of how DNA and histone modifications, together with multiple classes of ncRNAs, act to functionalize our genome, participants were also provided with a glimpse of the astounding complexity of chromatin structure, challenging existing dogma.

  13. Retention of the Native Epigenome in Purified Mammalian Chromatin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas H Ehrensberger

    Full Text Available A protocol is presented for the isolation of native mammalian chromatin as fibers of 25-250 nucleosomes under conditions that preserve the natural epigenetic signature. The material is composed almost exclusively of histones and DNA and conforms to the structure expected by electron microscopy. All sequences probed for were retained, indicating that the material is representative of the majority of the genome. DNA methylation marks and histone marks resembled the patterns observed in vivo. Importantly, nucleosome positions also remained largely unchanged, except on CpG islands, where nucleosomes were found to be unstable. The technical challenges of reconstituting biochemical reactions with native mammalian chromatin are discussed.

  14. Working memory training triggers delayed chromatin remodeling in the mouse corticostriatothalamic circuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassanelli, Pablo Martín; Cladouchos, María Laura; Fernández Macedo, Georgina; Sifonios, Laura; Giaccardi, Laura Inés; Gutiérrez, María Laura; Gravielle, María Clara; Wikinski, Silvia

    2015-07-03

    Working memory is a cognitive function serving goal-oriented behavior. In the last decade, working memory training has been shown to improve performance and its efficacy for the treatment of several neuropsychiatric disorders has begun to be examined. Neuroimaging studies have contributed to elucidate the brain areas involved but little is known about the underlying cellular events. A growing body of evidence has provided a link between working memory and relatively long-lasting epigenetic changes. However, the effects elicited by working memory training at the epigenetic level remain unknown. In this study we establish an animal model of working memory training and explore the changes in histone H3 acetylation (H3K9,14Ac) and histone H3 dimethylation on lysine 27 (H3K27Me2) triggered by the procedure in the brain regions of the corticostriatothalamic circuit (prelimbic/infralimbic cortex (PrL/IL), dorsomedial striatum (DMSt) and dorsomedial thalamus (DMTh)). Mice trained on a spontaneous alternation task showed improved alternation scores when tested with a retention interval that disrupts the performance of untrained animals. We then determined the involvement of the brain areas of the corticostriatothalamic circuit in working memory training by measuring the marker of neuronal activation c-fos. We observed increased c-fos levels in PrL/IL and DMSt in trained mice 90min after training. These animals also presented lower immunoreactivity for H3K9,14Ac in DMSt 24h but not 90min after the procedure. Increases in H3K27Me2, a repressive chromatin mark, were found in the DMSt and DMTh 24h after the task. Altogether, we present a mouse model to study the cellular underpinnings of working memory training and provide evidence indicating delayed chromatin remodeling towards repression triggered by the procedure. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Novel RNA Duplex Locks HIV-1 in a Latent State via Chromatin-mediated Transcriptional Silencing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chantelle Ahlenstiel

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Transcriptional gene silencing (TGS of mammalian genes can be induced by short interfering RNA (siRNA targeting promoter regions. We previously reported potent TGS of HIV-1 by siRNA (PromA, which targets tandem NF-κB motifs within the viral 5′LTR. In this study, we screened a siRNA panel with the aim of identifying novel 5′LTR targets, to provide multiplexing potential with enhanced viral silencing and application toward developing alternate therapeutic strategies. Systematic examination identified a novel siRNA target, si143, confirmed to induce TGS as the silencing mechanism. TGS was prolonged with virus suppression >12 days, despite a limited ability to induce post- TGS. Epigenetic changes associated with silencing were suggested by partial reversal by histone deacetylase inhibitors and confirmed by chromatin immunoprecipitation analyses, which showed induction of H3K27me3 and H3K9me3, reduction in H3K9Ac, and recruitment of argonaute-1, all characteristic marks of heterochromatin and TGS. Together, these epigenetic changes mimic those associated with HIV-1 latency. Further, robust resistance to reactivation was observed in the J-Lat 9.2 cell latency model, when transduced with shPromA and/or sh143. These data support si/shRNA-mediated TGS approaches to HIV-1 and provide alternate targets to pursue a functional cure, whereby the viral reservoir is locked in latency following antiretroviral therapy cessation.

  16. Regional activation of the cancer genome by long-range epigenetic remodeling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bert, S.A.; Robinson, M.D.; Strbenac, D.; Statham, A.L.; Song, J.Z.; Hulf, T.; Sutherland, R.L.; Coolen, M.W.; Stirzaker, C.; Clark, S. J.

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic gene deregulation in cancer commonly occurs through chromatin repression and promoter hypermethylation of tumor-associated genes. However, the mechanism underpinning epigenetic-based gene activation in carcinogenesis is still poorly understood. Here, we identify a mechanism of domain gene

  17. Epigenetic modifications and diabetic nephropathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marpadga A. Reddy

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Diabetic nephropathy (DN is a major complication associated with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, and a leading cause of end-stage renal disease. Conventional therapeutic strategies are not fully efficacious in the treatment of DN, suggesting an incomplete understanding of the gene regulation mechanisms involved in its pathogenesis. Furthermore, evidence from clinical trials has demonstrated a “metabolic memory” of prior exposure to hyperglycemia that continues to persist despite subsequent glycemic control. This remains a major challenge in the treatment of DN and other vascular complications. Epigenetic mechanisms such as DNA methylation, nucleosomal histone modifications, and noncoding RNAs control gene expression through regulation of chromatin structure and function and post-transcriptional mechanisms without altering the underlying DNA sequence. Emerging evidence indicates that multiple factors involved in the etiology of diabetes can alter epigenetic mechanisms and regulate the susceptibility to diabetes complications. Recent studies have demonstrated the involvement of histone lysine methylation in the regulation of key fibrotic and inflammatory genes related to diabetes complications including DN. Interestingly, histone lysine methylation persisted in vascular cells even after withdrawal from the diabetic milieu, demonstrating a potential role of epigenetic modifications in metabolic memory. Rapid advances in high-throughput technologies in the fields of genomics and epigenomics can lead to the identification of genome-wide alterations in key epigenetic modifications in vascular and renal cells in diabetes. Altogether, these findings can lead to the identification of potential predictive biomarkers and development of novel epigenetic therapies for diabetes and its associated complications.

  18. Shaping epigenetic memory via genomic bookmarking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michieletto, Davide; Chiang, Michael; Colì, Davide; Papantonis, Argyris; Orlandini, Enzo; Cook, Peter R; Marenduzzo, Davide

    2018-01-09

    Reconciling the stability of epigenetic patterns with the rapid turnover of histone modifications and their adaptability to external stimuli is an outstanding challenge. Here, we propose a new biophysical mechanism that can establish and maintain robust yet plastic epigenetic domains via genomic bookmarking (GBM). We model chromatin as a recolourable polymer whose segments bear non-permanent histone marks (or colours) which can be modified by 'writer' proteins. The three-dimensional chromatin organisation is mediated by protein bridges, or 'readers', such as Polycomb Repressive Complexes and Transcription Factors. The coupling between readers and writers drives spreading of biochemical marks and sustains the memory of local chromatin states across replication and mitosis. In contrast, GBM-targeted perturbations destabilise the epigenetic patterns. Strikingly, we demonstrate that GBM alone can explain the full distribution of Polycomb marks in a whole Drosophila chromosome. We finally suggest that our model provides a starting point for an understanding of the biophysics of cellular differentiation and reprogramming. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  19. Epigenetics: the link between nature and nurture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tammen, Stephanie A; Friso, Simonetta; Choi, Sang-Woon

    2013-01-01

    While the eukaryotic genome is the same throughout all somatic cells in an organism, there are specific structures and functions that discern one type of cell from another. These differences are due to the cell's unique gene expression patterns that are determined during cellular differentiation. Interestingly, these cell-specific gene expression patterns can be affected by an organism's environment throughout its lifetime leading to phenotypical changes that have the potential of altering risk of some diseases. Both cell-specific gene expression signatures and environment mediated changes in expression patterns can be explained by a complex network of modifications to the DNA, histone proteins and degree of DNA packaging called epigenetic marks. Several areas of research have formed to study these epigenetic modifications, including DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling and microRNA (miRNA). The original definition of epigenetics incorporates inheritable but reversible phenomena that affect gene expression without altering base pairs. Even though not all of the above listed epigenetic traits have demonstrated heritability, they can all alter gene transcription without modification to the underlying genetic sequence. Because these epigenetic patterns can also be affected by an organism's environment, they serve as an important bridge between life experiences and phenotypes. Epigenetic patterns may change throughout one's lifespan, by an early life experience, environmental exposure or nutritional status. Epigenetic signatures influenced by the environment may determine our appearance, behavior, stress response, disease susceptibility, and even longevity. The interaction between types of epigenetic modifications in response to environmental factors and how environmental cues affect epigenetic patterns will further elucidate how gene transcription can be affectively altered. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Drosophila Cyclin G and epigenetic maintenance of gene expression during development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dupont, Camille A; Dardalhon-Cuménal, Delphine; Kyba, Michael; Brock, Hugh W; Randsholt, Neel B; Peronnet, Frédérique

    2015-01-01

    Cyclins and cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) are essential for cell cycle regulation and are functionally associated with proteins involved in epigenetic maintenance of transcriptional patterns in various developmental or cellular contexts. Epigenetic maintenance of transcription patterns, notably of Hox genes, requires the conserved Polycomb-group (PcG), Trithorax-group (TrxG), and Enhancer of Trithorax and Polycomb (ETP) proteins, particularly well studied in Drosophila. These proteins form large multimeric complexes that bind chromatin and appose or recognize histone post-translational modifications. PcG genes act as repressors, counteracted by trxG genes that maintain gene activation, while ETPs interact with both, behaving alternatively as repressors or activators. Drosophila Cyclin G negatively regulates cell growth and cell cycle progression, binds and co-localizes with the ETP Corto on chromatin, and participates with Corto in Abdominal-B Hox gene regulation. Here, we address further implications of Cyclin G in epigenetic maintenance of gene expression. We show that Cyclin G physically interacts and extensively co-localizes on chromatin with the conserved ETP Additional sex combs (ASX), belonging to the repressive PR-DUB complex that participates in H2A deubiquitination and Hox gene silencing. Furthermore, Cyclin G mainly co-localizes with RNA polymerase II phosphorylated on serine 2 that is specific to productive transcription. CycG interacts with Asx, PcG, and trxG genes in Hox gene maintenance, and behaves as a PcG gene. These interactions correlate with modified ectopic Hox protein domains in imaginal discs, consistent with a role for Cyclin G in PcG-mediated Hox gene repression. We show here that Drosophila CycG is a Polycomb-group gene enhancer, acting in epigenetic maintenance of the Hox genes Sex combs reduced (Scr) and Ultrabithorax (Ubx). However, our data suggest that Cyclin G acts alternatively as a transcriptional activator or repressor

  1. Epigenetic and genetic mechanisms in red cell biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hewitt, Kyle J; Sanalkumar, Rajendran; Johnson, Kirby D; Keles, Sunduz; Bresnick, Emery H

    2014-05-01

    Erythropoiesis, in which hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) generate lineage-committed progenitors that mature into erythrocytes, is regulated by numerous chromatin modifying and remodeling proteins. We will focus on how epigenetic and genetic mechanisms mesh to establish the erythroid transcriptome and how studying erythropoiesis can yield genomic principles. Trans-acting factor binding to small DNA motifs (cis-elements) underlies regulatory complex assembly at specific chromatin sites, and therefore unique transcriptomes. As cis-elements are often very small, thousands or millions of copies of a given element reside in a genome. Chromatin restricts factor access in a context-dependent manner, and cis-element-binding factors recruit chromatin regulators that mediate functional outputs. Technologies to map chromatin attributes of loci in vivo, to edit genomes and to sequence whole genomes have been transformative in discovering critical cis-elements linked to human disease. Cis-elements mediate chromatin-targeting specificity, and chromatin regulators dictate cis-element accessibility/function, illustrating an amalgamation of genetic and epigenetic mechanisms. Cis-elements often function ectopically when studied outside of their endogenous loci, and complex strategies to identify nonredundant cis-elements require further development. Facile genome-editing technologies provide a new approach to address this problem. Extending genetic analyses beyond exons and promoters will yield a rich pipeline of cis-element alterations with importance for red cell biology and disease.

  2. Epigenetic Modulators of Monocytic Function: Implication for Steady State and Disease in the CNS

    OpenAIRE

    Papavasiliou, F. Nina; Chung, Young Cheul; Gagnidze, Khatuna; Hajdarovic, Kaitlyn H.; Cole, Dan C.; Bulloch, Karen

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic alterations are necessary for the establishment of functional and phenotypic diversity in the populations of immune cells of the monocytic lineage. The epigenetic status of individual genes at different time points defines their transcriptional responses throughout development and in response to environmental stimuli. Epigenetic states are defined at the level of DNA modifications, chromatin modifications, as well as at the level of RNA base changes through RNA editing. Drawing fro...

  3. Selective targeting of epigenetic reader domains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greschik, Holger; Schüle, Roland; Günther, Thomas

    2017-05-01

    Epigenetic regulators including writers, erasers, and readers of chromatin marks have been implicated in numerous diseases and are therefore subject of intense academic and pharmaceutical research. While several small-molecule inhibitors targeting writers or erasers are either approved drugs or are currently being evaluated in clinical trials, the targeting of epigenetic readers has lagged behind. Proof-of-principle that epigenetic readers are also relevant drug targets was provided by landmark discoveries of selective inhibitors targeting the BET family of acetyl-lysine readers. More recently, high affinity chemical probes for non-BET acetyl- and methyl-lysine reader domains have also been developed. Areas covered: This article covers recent advances with the identification and validation of inhibitors and chemical probes targeting epigenetic reader domains. Issues related to epigenetic reader druggability, quality requirements for chemical probes, interpretation of cellular action, unexpected cross-talk, and future challenges are also discussed. Expert opinion: Chemical probes provide a powerful means to unravel biological functions of epigenetic readers and evaluate their potential as drug targets. To yield meaningful results, potency, selectivity, and cellular target engagement of chemical probes need to be stringently validated. Future chemical probes will probably need to fulfil additional criteria such as strict target specificity or the targeting of readers within protein complexes.

  4. Conference scene: Select Biosciences Epigenetics Europe 2010.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Razvi, Enal S

    2011-02-01

    The field of epigenetics is now on a geometric rise, driven in a large part by the realization that modifiers of chromatin are key regulators of biological processes in vivo. The three major classes of epigenetic effectors are DNA methylation, histone post-translational modifications (such as acetylation, methylation or phosphorylation) and small noncoding RNAs (most notably microRNAs). In this article, I report from Select Biosciences Epigenetics Europe 2010 industry conference held on 14-15 September 2010 at The Burlington Hotel, Dublin, Ireland. This industry conference was extremely well attended with a global pool of delegates representing the academic research community, biotechnology companies and pharmaceutical companies, as well as the technology/tool developers. This conference represented the current state of the epigenetics community with cancer/oncology as a key driver. In fact, it has been estimated that approximately 45% of epigenetic researchers today identify cancer/oncology as their main area of focus vis-à-vis their epigenetic research efforts.

  5. Alteration of Epigenetic Regulation by Long Noncoding RNAs in Cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariangela Morlando

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs are important regulators of the epigenetic status of the human genome. Besides their participation to normal physiology, lncRNA expression and function have been already associated to many diseases, including cancer. By interacting with epigenetic regulators and by controlling chromatin topology, their misregulation may result in an aberrant regulation of gene expression that may contribute to tumorigenesis. Here, we review the functional role and mechanisms of action of lncRNAs implicated in the aberrant epigenetic regulation that has characterized cancer development and progression.

  6. Rice epigenomics and epigenetics: challenges and opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiangsong; Zhou, Dao-Xiu

    2013-05-01

    During recent years rice genome-wide epigenomic information such as DNA methylation and histone modifications, which are important for genome activity has been accumulated. The function of a number of rice epigenetic regulators has been studied, many of which are found to be involved in a diverse range of developmental and stress-responsive pathways. Analysis of epigenetic variations among different rice varieties indicates that epigenetic modification may lead to inheritable phenotypic variation. Characterizing phenotypic consequences of rice epigenomic variations and the underlining chromatin mechanism and identifying epialleles related to important agronomic traits may provide novel strategies to enhance agronomically favorable traits and grain productivity in rice. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. New Insights into the Epigenetics of Hepatocellular Carcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Braira Wahid

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC is one of the most predominant malignancies with high fatality rate. This deadly cancer is rising at an alarming rate because it is quite resistant to radio- and chemotherapy. Different epigenetic mechanisms such as histone modifications, DNA methylation, chromatin remodeling, and expression of noncoding RNAs drive the cell proliferation, invasion, metastasis, initiation, progression, and development of HCC. These epigenetic alterations because of potential reversibility open way towards the development of biomarkers and therapeutics. The contribution of these epigenetic changes to HCC development has not been thoroughly explored yet. Further research on HCC epigenetics is necessary to better understand novel molecular-targeted HCC treatment and prevention. This review highlights latest research progress and current updates regarding epigenetics of HCC, biomarker discovery, and future preventive and therapeutic strategies to combat the increasing risk of HCC.

  8. Advances in epigenetics and epigenomics for neurodegenerative diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qureshi, Irfan A; Mehler, Mark F

    2011-10-01

    In the post-genomic era, epigenetic factors-literally those that are "over" or "above" genetic ones and responsible for controlling the expression and function of genes-have emerged as important mediators of development and aging; gene-gene and gene-environmental interactions; and the pathophysiology of complex disease states. Here, we provide a brief overview of the major epigenetic mechanisms (ie, DNA methylation, histone modifications and chromatin remodeling, and non-coding RNA regulation). We highlight the nearly ubiquitous profiles of epigenetic dysregulation that have been found in Alzheimer's and other neurodegenerative diseases. We also review innovative methods and technologies that enable the characterization of individual epigenetic modifications and more widespread epigenomic states at high resolution. We conclude that, together with complementary genetic, genomic, and related approaches, interrogating epigenetic and epigenomic profiles in neurodegenerative diseases represent important and increasingly practical strategies for advancing our understanding of and the diagnosis and treatment of these disorders.

  9. Conference Scene: Epigenetic regulation: from mechanism to intervention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chatterjee, Aniruddha

    2012-10-01

    The Medical Research Council Clinical Sciences Centre Symposium on Epigenetic Regulation: From Mechanism to Intervention in London, UK, which was held on 20-22 June 2012, attracted 305 participants from around the globe and included 37 speakers and 85 selected poster presentations. The organizing committee, led by Niall Dillon of the Medical Research Council Clinical Sciences Centre (London, UK), consisted of several distinguished researchers in the fields of epigenetics and chromatin organization from across the UK. The meeting covered a diverse range of topics and brought together scientists carrying out fundamental research on epigenetic mechanisms and also researchers who are exploring the role of epigenetics in human diseases and its clinical applications. In addition, the meeting highlighted some emerging aspects in the rapidly evolving field of epigenetics.

  10. Transgenerational epigenetic inheritance: adaptation through the germline epigenome?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prokopuk, Lexie; Western, Patrick S; Stringer, Jessica M

    2015-08-01

    Epigenetic modifications direct the way DNA is packaged into the nucleus, making genes more or less accessible to transcriptional machinery and influencing genomic stability. Environmental factors have the potential to alter the epigenome, allowing genes that are silenced to be activated and vice versa. This ultimately influences disease susceptibility and health in an individual. Furthermore, altered chromatin states can be transmitted to subsequent generations, thus epigenetic modifications may provide evolutionary mechanisms that impact on adaptation to changed environments. However, the mechanisms involved in establishing and maintaining these epigenetic modifications during development remain unclear. This review discusses current evidence for transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, confounding issues associated with its study, and the biological relevance of altered epigenetic states for subsequent generations.

  11. Epigenetics and Breast Cancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    An T. Vo

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Several of the active compounds in foods, poisons, drugs, and industrial chemicals may, by epigenetic mechanisms, increase or decrease the risk of breast cancers. Enzymes that are involved in DNA methylation and histone modifications have been shown to be altered in several types of breast and other cancers resulting in abnormal patterns of methylation and/or acetylation. Hypermethylation at the CpG islands found in estrogen response element (ERE promoters occurs in conjunction with ligand-bonded alpha subunit estrogen receptor (Erα dimers wherein the ligand ERα dimer complex acts as a transcription factor and binds to the ERE promoter. Ligands could be 17-β-estradiol (E2, phytoestrogens, heterocyclic amines, and many other identified food additives and heavy metals. The dimer recruits DNA methyltransferases which catalyze the transfer of methyl groups from S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAM to 5′-cytosine on CpG islands. Other enzymes are recruited to the region by ligand-ERα dimers which activate DNA demethylases to act simultaneously to increase gene expression of protooncogenes and growth-promoting genes. Ligand-ERα dimers also recruit histone acetyltransferase to the ERE promoter region. Histone demethylases such as JMJD2B and histone methyltransferases are enzymes which demethylate lysine residues on histones H3 and/or H4. This makes the chromatin accessible for transcription factors and enzymes.

  12. The role of chromatin repressive marks in cognition and disease: A focus on the repressive complex GLP/G9a

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Benevento, M.; Molengraft, M. van de; Westen, R. van; Bokhoven, H. van; Nadif Kasri, N.

    2015-01-01

    Histone post-translational modifications are key epigenetic processes controlling the regulation of gene transcription. In recent years it has become apparent that chromatin modifications contribute to cognition through the modulation of gene expression required for the expression and consolidation

  13. Genome-Wide Epigenetic Studies in Human Disease: A Primer on -Omic Technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Huihuang; Tian, Shulan; Slager, Susan L; Sun, Zhifu; Ordog, Tamas

    2016-01-15

    Epigenetic information encoded in covalent modifications of DNA and histone proteins regulates fundamental biological processes through the action of chromatin regulators, transcription factors, and noncoding RNA species. Epigenetic plasticity enables an organism to respond to developmental and environmental signals without genetic changes. However, aberrant epigenetic control plays a key role in pathogenesis of disease. Normal epigenetic states could be disrupted by detrimental mutations and expression alteration of chromatin regulators or by environmental factors. In this primer, we briefly review the epigenetic basis of human disease and discuss how recent discoveries in this field could be translated into clinical diagnosis, prevention, and treatment. We introduce platforms for mapping genome-wide chromatin accessibility, nucleosome occupancy, DNA-binding proteins, and DNA methylation, primarily focusing on the integration of DNA methylation and chromatin immunoprecipitation-sequencing technologies into disease association studies. We highlight practical considerations in applying high-throughput epigenetic assays and formulating analytical strategies. Finally, we summarize current challenges in sample acquisition, experimental procedures, data analysis, and interpretation and make recommendations on further refinement in these areas. Incorporating epigenomic testing into the clinical research arsenal will greatly facilitate our understanding of the epigenetic basis of disease and help identify novel therapeutic targets. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  14. chromswitch: A flexible method to detect chromatin state switches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jessa, Selin; Kleinman, Claudia L

    2018-02-09

    Chromatin state plays a major role in controlling gene expression, and comparative analysis of ChIP-seq data is key to understanding epigenetic regulation. We present chromswitch, an R/Bioconductor package to integrate epigenomic data in a defined window of interest to detect an overall switch in chromatin state. Chromswitch accurately classifies a benchmarking dataset, and when applied genome-wide, the tool successfully detects chromatin changes that result in brain-specific expression. Chromswitch is implemented as an R package available from Bioconductor at https://bioconductor.org/packages/chromswitch. claudia.kleinman@mcgill.ca. Supplementary material are available online. All data and code for the analysis presented in this paper are available at https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1101260.

  15. Epigenetic mechanisms in the initiation of hematological malignancies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Maleki

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Cancer development is not restricted to the genetic changes, but also to epigenetic changes. Epigenetic processes are very important in the development of hematological malignancies. The main epigenetic alterations are aberrations in DNA methylation, post-translational modifications of histones, chromatin remodeling and microRNAs patterns, and these are associated with tumor genesis. All the various cellular pathways contributing to the neoplastic phenotype are affected by epigenetic genes in cancer. These pathways can be explored as biomarkers in clinical use for early detection of disease, malignancy classification and response to treatment with classical chemotherapy agents and epigenetic drugs. Materials and Method: A literature review was performed using PUBMED from 1985 to 2008. Cross referencing of discovered articles was also reviewed.Results: In chronic lymphocytic leukemia, regional hypermethylation of gene promoters leads to gene silencing. Many of these genes have tumor suppressor phenotypes. In myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS, CDKN2B (alias, P15, a cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor that negatively regulates the cell cycle, has been shown to be hypermethylated in marrow stem (CD34+ cells in patients with MDS. At present both Vidaza and Decitabine (DNA methyltransferase inhibitors are approved for the treatment of MDS.Conclusion: Unlike mutations or deletions, DNA hypermethylation and histone deacetylation are potentially reversible by pharmacological inhibition, therefore those epigenetic changes have been recognized as promising novel therapeutic targets in hematopoietic malignances. In this review, we discussed molecular mechanisms of epigenetics, epigenetic changes in hematological malignancies and epigenetic based treatments

  16. Epigenetic regulation of estrogen-dependent memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fortress, Ashley M.; Frick, Karyn M.

    2014-01-01

    Hippocampal memory formation is highly regulated by post-translational histone modifications and DNA methylation. Accordingly, these epigenetic processes play a major role in the effects of modulatory factors, such as sex steroid hormones, on hippocampal memory. Our laboratory recently demonstrated that the ability of the potent estrogen 17β-estradiol (E2) to enhance hippocampal-dependent novel object recognition memory in ovariectomized female mice requires ERK-dependent histone H3 acetylation and DNA methylation in the dorsal hippocampus. Although these data provide valuable insight into the chromatin modifications that mediate the memory-enhancing effects of E2, epigenetic regulation of gene expression is enormously complex. Therefore, more research is needed to fully understand how E2 and other hormones employ epigenetic alterations to shape behavior. This review discusses the epigenetic alterations shown thus far to regulate hippocampal memory, briefly reviews the effects of E2 on hippocampal function, and describes in detail our work on epigenetic regulation of estrogenic memory enhancement. PMID:24878494

  17. Chromatin replication and histone dynamics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alabert, Constance; Jasencakova, Zuzana; Groth, Anja

    2017-01-01

    organization into chromatin. We reveal how specialized replication-coupled mechanisms rapidly assemble newly synthesized DNA into nucleosomes, while the complete restoration of chromatin organization including histone marks is a continuous process taking place throughout the cell cycle. Because failure...

  18. Role of Non-Coding RNAs in the Transgenerational Epigenetic Transmission of the Effects of Reprotoxicants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo Larriba

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs are regulatory elements of gene expression and chromatin structure. Both long and small ncRNAs can also act as inductors and targets of epigenetic programs. Epigenetic patterns can be transmitted from one cell to the daughter cell, but, importantly, also through generations. Diversity of ncRNAs is emerging with new and surprising roles. Functional interactions among ncRNAs and between specific ncRNAs and structural elements of the chromatin are drawing a complex landscape. In this scenario, epigenetic changes induced by environmental stressors, including reprotoxicants, can explain some transgenerationally-transmitted phenotypes in non-Mendelian ways. In this review, we analyze mechanisms of action of reprotoxicants upon different types of ncRNAs and epigenetic modifications causing transgenerationally transmitted characters through germ cells but affecting germ cells and reproductive systems. A functional model of epigenetic mechanisms of transgenerational transmission ncRNAs-mediated is also proposed.

  19. Daphnia as an Emerging Epigenetic Model Organism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kami D. M. Harris

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Daphnia offer a variety of benefits for the study of epigenetics. Daphnia’s parthenogenetic life cycle allows the study of epigenetic effects in the absence of confounding genetic differences. Sex determination and sexual reproduction are epigenetically determined as are several other well-studied alternate phenotypes that arise in response to environmental stressors. Additionally, there is a large body of ecological literature available, recently complemented by the genome sequence of one species and transgenic technology. DNA methylation has been shown to be altered in response to toxicants and heavy metals, although investigation of other epigenetic mechanisms is only beginning. More thorough studies on DNA methylation as well as investigation of histone modifications and RNAi in sex determination and predator-induced defenses using this ecologically and evolutionarily important organism will contribute to our understanding of epigenetics.

  20. Analysis of Chromatin Organisation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szeberenyi, Jozsef

    2011-01-01

    Terms to be familiar with before you start to solve the test: chromatin, nucleases, sucrose density gradient centrifugation, melting point, gel electrophoresis, ethidium bromide, autoradiography, Southern blotting, Northern blotting, Sanger sequencing, restriction endonucleases, exonucleases, linker DNA, chloroform extraction, nucleosomes,…

  1. Epigenetic aspects of HP1 exchange kinetics in apoptotic chromatin

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Legartová, Soňa; Jugová, Alžbeta; Stixová, Lenka; Kozubek, Stanislav; Fojtová, Miloslava; Zdráhal, Z.; Lochmanová, G.; Bártová, Eva

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 95, č. 2 (2013), s. 167-179 ISSN 0300-9084 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP302/10/1022; GA ČR(CZ) GBP302/12/G157; GA MŠk(CZ) LD11020; GA MŠk(CZ) ED1.1.00/02.0068 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50040702 Institutional support: RVO:68081707 Keywords : Apoptosis * Histones * HP1 Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 3.123, year: 2013

  2. Divide and (epigenetic) rule: Chromatin domains as functional and ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Mapping and sequencing of genomes from a large number of evolutionarily diverse species in the past decade revealed that sequence per se is not sufficient to understand genome function, the higher-order organization of the genome and its various modifications are also important. In eukar- yotic nuclei, genome is ...

  3. The chromatin regulatory code: Beyond a histone code

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lesne, A.

    2006-03-01

    In this commentary on the contribution by Arndt Benecke in this issue, I discuss why the notion of “chromatin code” introduced and elaborated in this paper is to be preferred to that of “histone code”. Speaking of a code as regards nucleosome conformation and histone tail post-translational modifications only makes sense within the chromatin fiber, where their physico-chemical features can be translated into regulatory programs at the genome level, by means of a complex, multi-level interplay with the fiber architecture and dynamics settled in the course of Evolution. In particular, this chromatin code presumably exploits allosteric transitions of the chromatin fiber. The chromatin structure dependence of its translation suggests two alternative modes of transcription initiation regulation, also proposed in the paper by A. Benecke in this issue for interpreting strikingly bimodal micro-array data.

  4. Epigenetic mechanisms in experience-driven memory formation and behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puckett, Rosemary E; Lubin, Farah D

    2011-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms have long been associated with the regulation of gene-expression changes accompanying normal neuronal development and cellular differentiation; however, until recently these mechanisms were believed to be statically quiet in the adult brain. Behavioral neuroscientists have now begun to investigate these epigenetic mechanisms as potential regulators of gene-transcription changes in the CNS subserving synaptic plasticity and long-term memory (LTM) formation. Experimental evidence from learning and memory animal models has demonstrated that active chromatin remodeling occurs in terminally differentiated postmitotic neurons, suggesting that these molecular processes are indeed intimately involved in several stages of LTM formation, including consolidation, reconsolidation and extinction. Such chromatin modifications include the phosphorylation, acetylation and methylation of histone proteins and the methylation of associated DNA to subsequently affect transcriptional gene readout triggered by learning. The present article examines how such learning-induced epigenetic changes contribute to LTM formation and influence behavior. In particular, this article is a survey of the specific epigenetic mechanisms that have been demonstrated to regulate gene expression for both transcription factors and growth factors in the CNS, which are critical for LTM formation and storage, as well as how aberrant epigenetic processing can contribute to psychological states such as schizophrenia and drug addiction. Together, the findings highlighted in this article support a novel role for epigenetic mechanisms in the adult CNS serving as potential key molecular regulators of gene-transcription changes necessary for LTM formation and adult behavior. PMID:22126252

  5. Epigenetic mechanisms in experience-driven memory formation and behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puckett, Rosemary E; Lubin, Farah D

    2011-10-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms have long been associated with the regulation of gene-expression changes accompanying normal neuronal development and cellular differentiation; however, until recently these mechanisms were believed to be statically quiet in the adult brain. Behavioral neuroscientists have now begun to investigate these epigenetic mechanisms as potential regulators of gene-transcription changes in the CNS subserving synaptic plasticity and long-term memory (LTM) formation. Experimental evidence from learning and memory animal models has demonstrated that active chromatin remodeling occurs in terminally differentiated postmitotic neurons, suggesting that these molecular processes are indeed intimately involved in several stages of LTM formation, including consolidation, reconsolidation and extinction. Such chromatin modifications include the phosphorylation, acetylation and methylation of histone proteins and the methylation of associated DNA to subsequently affect transcriptional gene readout triggered by learning. The present article examines how such learning-induced epigenetic changes contribute to LTM formation and influence behavior. In particular, this article is a survey of the specific epigenetic mechanisms that have been demonstrated to regulate gene expression for both transcription factors and growth factors in the CNS, which are critical for LTM formation and storage, as well as how aberrant epigenetic processing can contribute to psychological states such as schizophrenia and drug addiction. Together, the findings highlighted in this article support a novel role for epigenetic mechanisms in the adult CNS serving as potential key molecular regulators of gene-transcription changes necessary for LTM formation and adult behavior.

  6. Epigenetic regulation by selected dietary phytochemicals in cancer chemoprevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shukla, Samriddhi; Meeran, Syed M; Katiyar, Santosh K

    2014-12-01

    The growing interest in cancer epigenetics is largely due to the reversible nature of epigenetic changes which tend to alter during the course of carcinogenesis. Major epigenetic changes including DNA methylation, chromatin modifications and miRNA regulation play important roles in tumorigenic process. There are several epigenetically active synthetic molecules such as DNA methyltransferase (DNMTs) and histone deacetylases (HDACs) inhibitors, which are either approved or, are under clinical trials for the treatment of various cancers. However, most of the synthetic inhibitors have shown adverse side effects, narrow in their specificity and also expensive. Hence, bioactive phytochemicals, which are widely available with lesser toxic effects, have been tested for their role in epigenetic modulatory activities in gene regulation for cancer prevention and therapy. Encouragingly, many bioactive phytochemicals potentially altered the expression of key tumor suppressor genes, tumor promoter genes and oncogenes through modulation of DNA methylation and chromatin modification in cancer. These bioactive phytochemicals either alone or in combination with other phytochemicals showed promising results against various cancers. Here, we summarize and discuss the role of some commonly investigated phytochemicals and their epigenetic targets that are of particular interest in cancer prevention and cancer therapy. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Effects of fast neutrons on chromatin: dependence on chromatin structure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Radu, L. [Dept. of Molecular Genetics, V. Babes National Inst., Bd. Timisoara, Bucharest (Romania); Constantinescu, B. [Dept. of Cyclotron, H. Hulubei National Inst., Bucharest (Romania); Gazdaru, D. [Dept. of Biophysics, Physics Faculty, Univ. of Bucharest (Romania)

    2002-07-01

    The effects of fast neutrons (10-100 Gy) on chromatin extracted from normal (liver of Wistar rats) and tumor (Walker carcinosarcoma maintained on Wistar rats) tissues were compared. The spectroscopic assays used were (i) chromatin intrinsic fluorescence, (ii) time-resolved fluorescence of chromatin-proflavine complexes, and (iii) fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) between dansyl chloride and acridine orange coupled to chromatin. For both normal and tumor chromatin, the intensity of intrinsic fluorescence specific for acidic and basic proteins decreased with increasing dose. The relative contributions of the excited-state lifetime of proflavine bound to chromatin were reduced upon fast-neutron irradiation, indicating a decrease in the proportion of chromatin DNA available for ligand binding. The Forster energy transfer efficiencies were also modified by irradiation. These effects were larger for chromatin from tumor tissue. In the range 0-100 Gy, fast neutrons induced alterations in DNA and acidic and basic proteins, as well as in global chromatin structure. The radiosensitivity of chromatin extracted from tumor tissue seems to be higher than that of chromatin extracted from normal tissue, probably because of its higher euchromatin (loose)-heterochromatin (compact) ratio. (author)

  8. Epigenetic Landscape during Coronavirus Infection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra Schäfer

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Coronaviruses (CoV comprise a large group of emerging human and animal pathogens, including the highly pathogenic severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV strains. The molecular mechanisms regulating emerging coronavirus pathogenesis are complex and include virus–host interactions associated with entry, replication, egress and innate immune control. Epigenetics research investigates the genetic and non-genetic factors that regulate phenotypic variation, usually caused by external and environmental factors that alter host expression patterns and performance without any change in the underlying genotype. Epigenetic modifications, such as histone modifications, DNA methylation, chromatin remodeling, and non-coding RNAs, function as important regulators that remodel host chromatin, altering host expression patterns and networks in a highly flexible manner. For most of the past two and a half decades, research has focused on the molecular mechanisms by which RNA viruses antagonize the signaling and sensing components that regulate induction of the host innate immune and antiviral defense programs upon infection. More recently, a growing body of evidence supports the hypothesis that viruses, even lytic RNA viruses that replicate in the cytoplasm, have developed intricate, highly evolved, and well-coordinated processes that are designed to regulate the host epigenome, and control host innate immune antiviral defense processes, thereby promoting robust virus replication and pathogenesis. In this article, we discuss the strategies that are used to evaluate the mechanisms by which viruses regulate the host epigenome, especially focusing on highly pathogenic respiratory RNA virus infections as a model. By combining measures of epigenome reorganization with RNA and proteomic datasets, we articulate a spatial-temporal data integration approach to identify regulatory genomic clusters

  9. Chromatin domains and function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fransz, P.; Meier, I.

    2009-01-01

    The inheritance of biological traits involves not only the transfer of genetic information in the form of DNA, but also epigenetic information. The latter is encrypted in a DNA component, methylation of cytosine residues, and in non-DNA components such as histone modifications, non-histone proteins,

  10. Pharmacologic Targeting of Chromatin Modulators As Therapeutics of Acute Myeloid Leukemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui Lu

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Acute myeloid leukemia (AML, a common hematological cancer of myeloid lineage cells, generally exhibits poor prognosis in the clinic and demands new treatment options. Recently, direct sequencing of samples from human AMLs and pre-leukemic diseases has unveiled their mutational landscapes and significantly advanced the molecular understanding of AML pathogenesis. The newly identified recurrent mutations frequently “hit” genes encoding epigenetic modulators, a wide range of chromatin-modifying enzymes and regulatory factors involved in gene expression regulation, supporting aberration of chromatin structure and epigenetic modification as a main oncogenic mechanism and cancer-initiating event. Increasing body of evidence demonstrates that chromatin modification aberrations underlying the formation of blood cancer can be reversed by pharmacological targeting of the responsible epigenetic modulators, thus providing new mechanism-based treatment strategies. Here, we summarize recent advances in development of small-molecule inhibitors specific to chromatin factors and their potential applications in the treatment of genetically defined AMLs. These compounds selectively inhibit various subclasses of “epigenetic writers” (such as histone methyltransferases MLL/KMT2A, G9A/KMT1C, EZH2/KMT6A, DOT1L/KMT4, and PRMT1, “epigenetic readers” (such as BRD4 and plant homeodomain finger proteins, and “epigenetic erasers” (such as histone demethylases LSD1/KDM1A and JMJD2C/KDM4C. We also discuss about the molecular mechanisms underpinning therapeutic effect of these epigenetic compounds in AML and favor their potential usage for combinational therapy and treatment of pre-leukemia diseases.

  11. New clinical developments in histone deacetylase inhibitors for epigenetic therapy of cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ma Yuehua

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract DNA methylation and histone acetylation are two well known epigenetic chromatin modifications. Epigenetic agents leading to DNA hypomethylation and histone hyperacetylation have been approved for treatment of hematological disorders. The first histone deacetylase inhibitor, vorinostat, has been licensed for cutaneous T cell lymphoma treatment. More than 11 new epigenetic agents are in various stages of clinical development for therapy of multiple cancer types. In this review we summarize novel histone deacetylase inhibitors and new regimens from clinical trials for epigenetic therapy of cancer.

  12. Systematic Epigenomic Analysis Reveals Chromatin States Associated with Melanoma Progression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fiziev, Petko; Akdemir, Kadir C; Miller, John P; Keung, Emily Z; Samant, Neha S; Sharma, Sneha; Natale, Christopher A; Terranova, Christopher J; Maitituoheti, Mayinuer; Amin, Samirkumar B; Martinez-Ledesma, Emmanuel; Dhamdhere, Mayura; Axelrad, Jacob B; Shah, Amiksha; Cheng, Christine S; Mahadeshwar, Harshad; Seth, Sahil; Barton, Michelle C; Protopopov, Alexei; Tsai, Kenneth Y; Davies, Michael A; Garcia, Benjamin A; Amit, Ido; Chin, Lynda; Ernst, Jason; Rai, Kunal

    2017-04-25

    The extent and nature of epigenomic changes associated with melanoma progression is poorly understood. Through systematic epigenomic profiling of 35 epigenetic modifications and transcriptomic analysis, we define chromatin state changes associated with melanomagenesis by using a cell phenotypic model of non-tumorigenic and tumorigenic states. Computation of specific chromatin state transitions showed loss of histone acetylations and H3K4me2/3 on regulatory regions proximal to specific cancer-regulatory genes in important melanoma-driving cell signaling pathways. Importantly, such acetylation changes were also observed between benign nevi and malignant melanoma human tissues. Intriguingly, only a small fraction of chromatin state transitions correlated with expected changes in gene expression patterns. Restoration of acetylation levels on deacetylated loci by histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors selectively blocked excessive proliferation in tumorigenic cells and human melanoma cells, suggesting functional roles of observed chromatin state transitions in driving hyperproliferative phenotype. Through these results, we define functionally relevant chromatin states associated with melanoma progression. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Epigenetics in adipose tissue, obesity, weight loss, and diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, J Alfredo; Milagro, Fermín I; Claycombe, Kate J; Schalinske, Kevin L

    2014-01-01

    Given the role that diet and other environmental factors play in the development of obesity and type 2 diabetes, the implication of different epigenetic processes is being investigated. Although it is well known that external factors can cause cell type-dependent epigenetic changes, including DNA methylation, histone tail modifications, and chromatin remodeling, the regulation of these processes, the magnitude of the changes and the cell types in which they occur, the individuals more predisposed, and the more crucial stages of life remain to be elucidated. There is evidence that obese and diabetic people have a pattern of epigenetic marks different from nonobese and nondiabetic individuals. The main long-term goals in this field are the identification and understanding of the role of epigenetic marks that could be used as early predictors of metabolic risk and the development of drugs or diet-related treatments able to delay these epigenetic changes and even reverse them. But weight gain and insulin resistance/diabetes are influenced not only by epigenetic factors; different epigenetic biomarkers have also been identified as early predictors of weight loss and the maintenance of body weight after weight loss. The characterization of all the factors that are able to modify the epigenetic signatures and the determination of their real importance are hindered by the following factors: the magnitude of change produced by dietary and environmental factors is small and cumulative; there are great differences among cell types; and there are many factors involved, including age, with multiple interactions between them.

  14. Epigenetics in Adipose Tissue, Obesity, Weight Loss, and Diabetes12

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, J. Alfredo; Milagro, Fermín I.; Claycombe, Kate J.; Schalinske, Kevin L.

    2014-01-01

    Given the role that diet and other environmental factors play in the development of obesity and type 2 diabetes, the implication of different epigenetic processes is being investigated. Although it is well known that external factors can cause cell type-dependent epigenetic changes, including DNA methylation, histone tail modifications, and chromatin remodeling, the regulation of these processes, the magnitude of the changes and the cell types in which they occur, the individuals more predisposed, and the more crucial stages of life remain to be elucidated. There is evidence that obese and diabetic people have a pattern of epigenetic marks different from nonobese and nondiabetic individuals. The main long-term goals in this field are the identification and understanding of the role of epigenetic marks that could be used as early predictors of metabolic risk and the development of drugs or diet-related treatments able to delay these epigenetic changes and even reverse them. But weight gain and insulin resistance/diabetes are influenced not only by epigenetic factors; different epigenetic biomarkers have also been identified as early predictors of weight loss and the maintenance of body weight after weight loss. The characterization of all the factors that are able to modify the epigenetic signatures and the determination of their real importance are hindered by the following factors: the magnitude of change produced by dietary and environmental factors is small and cumulative; there are great differences among cell types; and there are many factors involved, including age, with multiple interactions between them. PMID:24425725

  15. Chromatin replication and epigenome maintenance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alabert, Constance; Groth, Anja

    2012-01-01

    Stability and function of eukaryotic genomes are closely linked to chromatin structure and organization. During cell division the entire genome must be accurately replicated and the chromatin landscape reproduced on new DNA. Chromatin and nuclear structure influence where and when DNA replication...... initiates, whereas the replication process itself disrupts chromatin and challenges established patterns of genome regulation. Specialized replication-coupled mechanisms assemble new DNA into chromatin, but epigenome maintenance is a continuous process taking place throughout the cell cycle. If DNA...... synthesis is perturbed, cells can suffer loss of both genome and epigenome integrity with severe consequences for the organism....

  16. Epigenetic Alterations in Parathyroid Cancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chiara Verdelli

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Parathyroid cancers (PCas are rare malignancies representing approximately 0.005% of all cancers. PCas are a rare cause of primary hyperparathyroidism, which is the third most common endocrine disease, mainly related to parathyroid benign tumors. About 90% of PCas are hormonally active hypersecreting parathormone (PTH; consequently patients present with complications of severe hypercalcemia. Pre-operative diagnosis is often difficult due to clinical features shared with benign parathyroid lesions. Surgery provides the current best chance of cure, though persistent or recurrent disease occurs in about 50% of patients with PCas. Somatic inactivating mutations of CDC73/HRPT2 gene, encoding parafibromin, are the most frequent genetic anomalies occurring in PCas. Recently, the aberrant DNA methylation signature and microRNA expression profile have been identified in PCas, providing evidence that parathyroid malignancies are distinct entities from parathyroid benign lesions, showing an epigenetic signature resembling some embryonic aspects. The present paper reviews data about epigenetic alterations in PCas, up to now limited to DNA methylation, chromatin regulators and microRNA profile.

  17. Environment, epigenetics and reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skinner, Michael K

    2017-07-01

    A conference summary of the third biannual Kenya Africa Conference "Environment, Epigenetics and Reproduction" is provided. A partial special Environmental Epigenetics issue containing a number of papers in Volume 3, Issue 3 and 4 are discussed.

  18. Computational and Experimental Methods to Decipher the Epigenetic Code

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano ede Pretis

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available A multi-layered set of epigenetic marks, including post-translational modifications of histones and methylation of DNA, is finely tuned to define the epigenetic state of chromatin in any given cell type under specific conditions. Recently, the knowledge about the combinations of epigenetic marks occurring in the genome of different cell types under various conditions is rapidly increasing. Computational methods were developed for the identification of these states, unraveling the combinatorial nature of epigenetic marks and their association to genomic functional elements and transcriptional states. Nevertheless, the precise rules defining the interplay between all these marks remain poorly characterized. In this perspective we review the current state of this research field, illustrating the power and the limitations of current approaches. Finally, we sketch future avenues of research illustrating how the adoption of specific experimental designs coupled with available experimental approaches could be critical for a significant progress in this area.

  19. Combating the epigenome: epigenetic drugs against non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassler, Melanie R; Schiefer, Ana-Iris; Egger, Gerda

    2013-08-01

    Non-Hodgkin's lymphomas (NHLs) comprise a large and diverse group of neoplasms of lymphocyte origin with heterogeneous molecular features and clinical manifestations. Current therapies are based on standard chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation or stem cell transplantation. The discovery of recurrent mutations in epigenetic enzymes, such as chromatin modifiers and DNA methyltransferases, has provided researchers with a rationale to develop novel inhibitors targeting these enzymes. Several clinical and preclinical studies have demonstrated the efficacy of epigenetic drugs in NHL therapy and a few specific inhibitors have already been approved for clinical use. Here, we provide an overview of current NHL classification and a review of the present literature describing epigenetic alterations in NHL, including a summary of different epigenetic drugs, and their use in preclinical and clinical studies.

  20. Epigenetic regulation in the tumorigenesis of MEN1-associated endocrine cell types.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iyer, Sucharitha; Agarwal, Sunita K

    2018-04-03

    Epigenetic regulation is emerging as a key feature in the molecular characteristics of various human diseases. Epigenetic aberrations can occur from mutations in genes associated with epigenetic regulation, improper deposition, removal or reading of histone modifications, DNA methylation/demethylation, and impaired non-coding RNA interactions in chromatin. Menin, the protein product of the gene causative for the multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN1) syndrome, interacts with chromatin-associated protein complexes and also regulates some non-coding RNAs, thus participating in epigenetic control mechanisms. Germline inactivating mutations in the MEN1 gene that encodes menin predispose patients to develop endocrine tumors of the parathyroids, anterior pituitary and the duodenopancreatic neuroendocrine tissues. Therefore, functional loss of menin in the various MEN1-associated endocrine cell types can result in epigenetic changes that promote tumorigenesis. Because epigenetic changes are reversible, they can be targeted to develop therapeutics for restoring the tumor epigenome to the normal state. Irrespective of whether epigenetic alterations are the cause or consequence of the tumorigenesis process, targeting the endocrine tumor-associated epigenome offers opportunities for exploring therapeutic options. This review presents epigenetic control mechanisms relevant to the interactions and targets of menin, and the contribution of epigenetics in the tumorigenesis of endocrine cell types from menin loss.

  1. Chromatin Modifications as Determinants of Muscle Stem Cell Quiescence and Chronological Aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ling Liu

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The ability to maintain quiescence is critical for the long-term maintenance of a functional stem cell pool. To date, the epigenetic and transcriptional characteristics of quiescent stem cells and how they change with age remain largely unknown. In this study, we explore the chromatin features of adult skeletal muscle stem cells, or satellite cells (SCs, which reside predominantly in a quiescent state in fully developed limb muscles of both young and aged mice. Using a ChIP-seq approach to obtain global epigenetic profiles of quiescent SCs (QSCs, we show that QSCs possess a permissive chromatin state in which few genes are epigenetically repressed by Polycomb group (PcG-mediated histone 3 lysine 27 trimethylation (H3K27me3, and a large number of genes encoding regulators that specify nonmyogenic lineages are demarcated by bivalent domains at their transcription start sites (TSSs. By comparing epigenetic profiles of QSCs from young and old mice, we also provide direct evidence that, with age, epigenetic changes accumulate and may lead to a functional decline in quiescent stem cells. These findings highlight the importance of chromatin mapping in understanding unique features of stem cell identity and stem cell aging.

  2. Lineage-Determining Transcription Factor TCF-1 Initiates the Epigenetic Identity of T Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, John L; Georgakilas, Georgios; Petrovic, Jelena; Kurachi, Makoto; Cai, Stanley; Harly, Christelle; Pear, Warren S; Bhandoola, Avinash; Wherry, E John; Vahedi, Golnaz

    2018-02-20

    T cell development is orchestrated by transcription factors that regulate the expression of genes initially buried within inaccessible chromatin, but the transcription factors that establish the regulatory landscape of the T cell lineage remain unknown. Profiling chromatin accessibility at eight stages of T cell development revealed the selective enrichment of TCF-1 at genomic regions that became accessible at the earliest stages of development. TCF-1 was further required for the accessibility of these regulatory elements and at the single-cell level, it dictated a coordinate opening of chromatin in T cells. TCF-1 expression in fibroblasts generated de novo chromatin accessibility even at chromatin regions with repressive marks, inducing the expression of T cell-restricted genes. These results indicate that a mechanism by which TCF-1 controls T cell fate is through its widespread ability to target silent chromatin and establish the epigenetic identity of T cells. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Landscaping plant epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKeown, Peter C; Spillane, Charles

    2014-01-01

    The understanding of epigenetic mechanisms is necessary for assessing the potential impacts of epigenetics on plant growth, development and reproduction, and ultimately for the response of these factors to evolutionary pressures and crop breeding programs. This volume highlights the latest in laboratory and bioinformatic techniques used for the investigation of epigenetic phenomena in plants. Such techniques now allow genome-wide analyses of epigenetic regulation and help to advance our understanding of how epigenetic regulatory mechanisms affect cellular and genome function. To set the scene, we begin with a short background of how the field of epigenetics has evolved, with a particular focus on plant epigenetics. We consider what has historically been understood by the term "epigenetics" before turning to the advances in biochemistry, molecular biology, and genetics which have led to current-day definitions of the term. Following this, we pay attention to key discoveries in the field of epigenetics that have emerged from the study of unusual and enigmatic phenomena in plants. Many of these phenomena have involved cases of non-Mendelian inheritance and have often been dismissed as mere curiosities prior to the elucidation of their molecular mechanisms. In the penultimate section, consideration is given to how advances in molecular techniques are opening the doors to a more comprehensive understanding of epigenetic phenomena in plants. We conclude by assessing some opportunities, challenges, and techniques for epigenetic research in both model and non-model plants, in particular for advancing understanding of the regulation of genome function by epigenetic mechanisms.

  4. Epigenetic modifications and their relation to caste and sex determination and adult division of labor in the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos A.M. Cardoso-Júnior

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Stingless bees of the genus Melipona, have long been considered an enigmatic case among social insects for their mode of caste determination, where in addition to larval food type and quantity, the genotype also has a saying, as proposed over 50 years ago by Warwick E. Kerr. Several attempts have since tried to test his Mendelian two-loci/two-alleles segregation hypothesis, but only recently a single gene crucial for sex determination in bees was evidenced to be sex-specifically spliced and also caste-specifically expressed in a Melipona species. Since alternative splicing is frequently associated with epigenetic marks, and the epigenetic status plays a major role in setting the caste phenotype in the honey bee, we investigated here epigenetic chromatin modification in the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris. We used an ELISA-based methodology to quantify global methylation status and western blot assays to reveal histone modifications. The results evidenced DNA methylation/demethylation events in larvae and pupae, and significant differences in histone methylation and phosphorylation between newly emerged adult queens and workers. The epigenetic dynamics seen in this stingless bee species represent a new facet in the caste determination process in Melipona bees and suggest a possible mechanism that is likely to link a genotype component to the larval diet and adult social behavior of these bees.

  5. Histone posttranslational modifications predict specific alternative exon subtypes in mammalian brain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qiwen Hu

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available A compelling body of literature, based on next generation chromatin immunoprecipitation and RNA sequencing of reward brain regions indicates that the regulation of the epigenetic landscape likely underlies chronic drug abuse and addiction. It is now critical to develop highly innovative computational strategies to reveal the relevant regulatory transcriptional mechanisms that may underlie neuropsychiatric disease. We have analyzed chromatin regulation of alternative splicing, which is implicated in cocaine exposure in mice. Recent literature has described chromatin-regulated alternative splicing, suggesting a novel function for drug-induced neuroepigenetic remodeling. However, the extent of the genome-wide association between particular histone modifications and alternative splicing remains unexplored. To address this, we have developed novel computational approaches to model the association between alternative splicing and histone posttranslational modifications in the nucleus accumbens (NAc, a brain reward region. Using classical statistical methods and machine learning to combine ChIP-Seq and RNA-Seq data, we found that specific histone modifications are strongly associated with various aspects of differential splicing. H3K36me3 and H3K4me1 have the strongest association with splicing indicating they play a significant role in alternative splicing in brain reward tissue.

  6. Epigenetic processes in flowering plant reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Guifeng; Köhler, Claudia

    2017-02-01

    Seeds provide up to 70% of the energy intake of the human population, emphasizing the relevance of understanding the genetic and epigenetic mechanisms controlling seed formation. In flowering plants, seeds are the product of a double fertilization event, leading to the formation of the embryo and the endosperm surrounded by maternal tissues. Analogous to mammals, plants undergo extensive epigenetic reprogramming during both gamete formation and early seed development, a process that is supposed to be required to enforce silencing of transposable elements and thus to maintain genome stability. Global changes of DNA methylation, histone modifications, and small RNAs are closely associated with epigenome programming during plant reproduction. Here, we review current knowledge on chromatin changes occurring during sporogenesis and gametogenesis, as well as early seed development in major flowering plant models. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Small RNA-Mediated Epigenetic Myostatin Silencing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas C Roberts

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Myostatin (Mstn is a secreted growth factor that negatively regulates muscle mass and is therefore a potential pharmacological target for the treatment of muscle wasting disorders such as Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Here we describe a novel Mstn blockade approach in which small interfering RNAs (siRNAs complementary to a promoter-associated transcript induce transcriptional gene silencing (TGS in two differentiated mouse muscle cell lines. Silencing is sensitive to treatment with the histone deacetylase inhibitor trichostatin A, and the silent state chromatin mark H3K9me2 is enriched at the Mstn promoter following siRNA transfection, suggesting epigenetic remodeling underlies the silencing effect. These observations suggest that long-term epigenetic silencing may be feasible for Mstn and that TGS is a promising novel therapeutic strategy for the treatment of muscle wasting disorders.

  8. Noncoding Elements: Evolution and Epigenetic Regulation

    KAUST Repository

    Seridi, Loqmane

    2016-03-09

    When the human genome project was completed, it revealed a surprising result. 98% of the genome did not code for protein of which more than 50% are repeats— later known as ”Junk DNA”. However, comparative genomics unveiled that many noncoding elements are evolutionarily constrained; thus luckily to have a role in genome stability and regulation. Though, their exact functions remained largely unknown. Several large international consortia such as the Functional Annotation of Mammalian Genomes (FANTOM) and the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) were set to understand the structure and the regulation of the genome. Specifically, these endeavors aim to measure and reveal the transcribed components and functional elements of the genome. One of the most the striking findings of these efforts is that most of the genome is transcribed, including non-conserved noncoding elements and repeat elements. Specifically, we investigated the evolution and epigenetic properties of noncoding elements. 1. We compared genomes of evolutionarily distant species and showed the ubiquity of constrained noncoding elements in metazoa. 2. By integrating multi-omic data (such as transcriptome, nucleosome profiling, histone modifications), I conducted a comprehensive analysis of epigenetic properties (chromatin states) of conserved noncoding elements in insects. We showed that those elements have distinct and protective sequence features, undergo dynamic epigenetic regulation, and appear to be associated with the structural components of the chromatin, replication origins, and nuclear matrix. 3. I focused on the relationship between enhancers and repetitive elements. Using Cap Analysis of Gene Expression (CAGE) and RNASeq, I compiled a full catalog of active enhancers (a class of noncoding elements) during myogenesis of human primary cells of healthy donors and donors affected by Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Comparing the two time-courses, a significant change in the epigenetic

  9. Epigenetics: mechanisms and implications for diabetic complications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Mark E; El-Osta, Assam

    2010-12-10

    Epigenetic modifications regulate critical functions that underlie chromosome metabolism. Understanding the molecular changes to chromatin structure and the functional relationship with altered signaling pathways is now considered to represent an important conceptual challenge to explain diabetes and the phenomenon of metabolic or hyperglycemic memory. Although it remains unknown as to the specific molecular mechanisms whereby hyperglycemic memory leads to the development of diabetic vascular complications, emerging evidence now indicates that critical gene-activating epigenetic changes may confer future cell memories. Chemical modification of the H3 histone tail of lysine 4 and 9 has recently been identified with gene expression conferred by hyperglycemia. The persistence of these key epigenetic determinants in models of glycemic variability and the development of diabetic complications has been associated with these primary findings. Transient hyperglycemia promotes gene-activating epigenetic changes and signaling events critical in the development and progression of vascular complications. As for the role of specific epigenomic changes, it is postulated that further understanding enzymes involved in writing and erasing chemical changes could transform our understanding of the pathways implicated in diabetic vascular injury providing new therapeutic strategies.

  10. Epigenetic Risk Factors in PTSD and Depression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian Joachim Raabe

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Epidemiological and clinical studies have shown that children exposed to adverse experiences are at increased risk for the development of depression, anxiety disorders and PTSD. A history of child abuse and maltreatment increases the likelihood of being subsequently exposed to traumatic events or of developing PTSD as an adult. The brain is highly plastic during early life and encodes acquired information into lasting memories that normally subserve adaptation. Translational studies in rodents showed that enduring sensitization of neuronal and neuroendocrine circuits in response to early life adversity are likely risk factors of life time vulnerability to stress. Hereby, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA axis integrates cognitive, behavioural and emotional responses to early-life stress and can be epigenetically programmed during sensitive windows of development. Epigenetic mechanisms, comprising reciprocal regulation of chromatin structure and DNA methylation, are important to establish and maintain sustained, yet potentially reversible, changes in gene transcription. The relevance of these findings for the development of PTSD requires further studies in humans where experience-dependent epigenetic programming can additionally depend on genetic variation in the underlying substrates which may protect from or advance disease development. Overall, identification of early-life stress associated epigenetic risk markers informing on previous stress history can help to advance early diagnosis, personalized prevention and timely therapeutic interventions, thus reducing long-term social and health costs.

  11. Epigenetic regulation of caloric restriction in aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Michael

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The molecular mechanisms of aging are the subject of much research and have facilitated potential interventions to delay aging and aging-related degenerative diseases in humans. The aging process is frequently affected by environmental factors, and caloric restriction is by far the most effective and established environmental manipulation for extending lifespan in various animal models. However, the precise mechanisms by which caloric restriction affects lifespan are still not clear. Epigenetic mechanisms have recently been recognized as major contributors to nutrition-related longevity and aging control. Two primary epigenetic codes, DNA methylation and histone modification, are believed to dynamically influence chromatin structure, resulting in expression changes of relevant genes. In this review, we assess the current advances in epigenetic regulation in response to caloric restriction and how this affects cellular senescence, aging and potential extension of a healthy lifespan in humans. Enhanced understanding of the important role of epigenetics in the control of the aging process through caloric restriction may lead to clinical advances in the prevention and therapy of human aging-associated diseases.

  12. Epigenomic Co-localization and Co-evolution Reveal a Key Role for 5hmC as a Communication Hub in the Chromatin Network of ESCs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Juan

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetic communication through histone and cytosine modifications is essential for gene regulation and cell identity. Here, we propose a framework that is based on a chromatin communication model to get insight on the function of epigenetic modifications in ESCs. The epigenetic communication network was inferred from genome-wide location data plus extensive manual annotation. Notably, we found that 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC is the most-influential hub of this network, connecting DNA demethylation to nucleosome remodeling complexes and to key transcription factors of pluripotency. Moreover, an evolutionary analysis revealed a central role of 5hmC in the co-evolution of chromatin-related proteins. Further analysis of regions where 5hmC co-localizes with specific interactors shows that each interaction points to chromatin remodeling, stemness, differentiation, or metabolism. Our results highlight the importance of cytosine modifications in the epigenetic communication of ESCs.

  13. Epigenetic Modifications and Potential New Treatment Targets in Diabetic Retinopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorena Perrone

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Retinopathy is a debilitating vascular complication of diabetes. As with other diabetic complications, diabetic retinopathy (DR is characterized by the metabolic memory, which has been observed both in DR patients and in DR animal models. Evidences have provided that after a period of poor glucose control insulin or diabetes drug treatment fails to prevent the development and progression of DR even when good glycemic control is reinstituted (glucose normalization, suggesting a metabolic memory phenomenon. Recent studies also underline the role of epigenetic chromatin modifications as mediators of the metabolic memory. Indeed, epigenetic changes may lead to stable modification of gene expression, participating in DR pathogenesis. Moreover, increasing evidences suggest that environmental factors such as chronic hyperglycemia are implicated DR progression and may also affect the epigenetic state. Here we review recent findings demonstrating the key role of epigenetics in the progression of DR. Further elucidation of epigenetic mechanisms, acting both at the cis- and trans-chromatin structural elements, will yield new insights into the pathogenesis of DR and will open the way for the discovery of novel therapeutic targets to prevent DR progression.

  14. The epigenetics of nuclear envelope organization and disease

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schirmer, Eric C.

    2008-01-01

    Mammalian chromosomes and some specific genes have non-random positions within the nucleus that are tissue-specific and heritable. Work in many organisms has shown that genes at the nuclear periphery tend to be inactive and altering their partitioning to the interior results in their activation. Proteins of the nuclear envelope can recruit chromatin with specific epigenetic marks and can also recruit silencing factors that add new epigenetic modifications to chromatin sequestered at the periphery. Together these findings indicate that the nuclear envelope is a significant epigenetic regulator. The importance of this function is emphasized by observations of aberrant distribution of peripheral heterochromatin in several human diseases linked to mutations in NE proteins. These debilitating inherited diseases range from muscular dystrophies to the premature aging progeroid syndromes and the heterochromatin changes are just one early clue for understanding the molecular details of how they work. The architecture of the nuclear envelope provides a unique environment for epigenetic regulation and as such a great deal of research will be required before we can ascertain the full range of its contributions to epigenetics

  15. The epigenetics of nuclear envelope organization and disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schirmer, Eric C. [Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology, University of Edinburgh, Kings Buildings, Michael Swann Building, Room 5.22, Edinburgh EH9 3JR (United Kingdom)], E-mail: e.schirmer@ed.ac.uk

    2008-12-01

    Mammalian chromosomes and some specific genes have non-random positions within the nucleus that are tissue-specific and heritable. Work in many organisms has shown that genes at the nuclear periphery tend to be inactive and altering their partitioning to the interior results in their activation. Proteins of the nuclear envelope can recruit chromatin with specific epigenetic marks and can also recruit silencing factors that add new epigenetic modifications to chromatin sequestered at the periphery. Together these findings indicate that the nuclear envelope is a significant epigenetic regulator. The importance of this function is emphasized by observations of aberrant distribution of peripheral heterochromatin in several human diseases linked to mutations in NE proteins. These debilitating inherited diseases range from muscular dystrophies to the premature aging progeroid syndromes and the heterochromatin changes are just one early clue for understanding the molecular details of how they work. The architecture of the nuclear envelope provides a unique environment for epigenetic regulation and as such a great deal of research will be required before we can ascertain the full range of its contributions to epigenetics.

  16. Chromatin dynamics in genome stability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nair, Nidhi; Shoaib, Muhammad; Sørensen, Claus Storgaard

    2017-01-01

    Genomic DNA is compacted into chromatin through packaging with histone and non-histone proteins. Importantly, DNA accessibility is dynamically regulated to ensure genome stability. This is exemplified in the response to DNA damage where chromatin relaxation near genomic lesions serves to promote ...... of chromatin structure regulation in maintaining genome integrity by multiple mechanisms including facilitating DNA repair and directly suppressing endogenous DNA damage.......Genomic DNA is compacted into chromatin through packaging with histone and non-histone proteins. Importantly, DNA accessibility is dynamically regulated to ensure genome stability. This is exemplified in the response to DNA damage where chromatin relaxation near genomic lesions serves to promote...... access of relevant enzymes to specific DNA regions for signaling and repair. Furthermore, recent data highlight genome maintenance roles of chromatin through the regulation of endogenous DNA-templated processes including transcription and replication. Here, we review research that shows the importance...

  17. Epigenetics: ambiguities and implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stotz, Karola; Griffiths, Paul

    2016-12-01

    Everyone has heard of 'epigenetics', but the term means different things to different researchers. Four important contemporary meanings are outlined in this paper. Epigenetics in its various senses has implications for development, heredity, and evolution, and also for medicine. Concerning development, it cements the vision of a reactive genome strongly coupled to its environment. Concerning heredity, both narrowly epigenetic and broader 'exogenetic' systems of inheritance play important roles in the construction of phenotypes. A thoroughly epigenetic model of development and evolution was Waddington's aim when he introduced the term 'epigenetics' in the 1940s, but it has taken the modern development of molecular epigenetics to realize this aim. In the final sections of the paper we briefly outline some further implications of epigenetics for medicine and for the nature/nurture debate.

  18. Characteristics of thymine dimer excision from xeroderma pigmentosum chromatin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fujiwara, Y.; Kano, Y.

    1983-01-01

    We investigated thymine dimer excision from xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) chromatin in the cell-free reconstruction system. The normal-cell extract performed specific dimer excision from native chromatin and DNA isolated from 100 J/m 2 -irradiated cells. Such an excision in vitro was rapid and required high concentrations of extract. The extracts of XP group A, C and G cells were unable to excise from their own native-chromatin, but capable of excising from chromatin deprived of loosely bound nonhistone proteins with 0.35 M NaCl, as were from purified DNA. Thus, group A, C and G cells are most likely to be defective in the specific XP factors facilitating the excising activity under multicomponent regulation at the chromatin level. Further, either of group A, C and G extracts successfully complemented the native chromatin of the alternative groups. Uniquely, the XP group D extract excised dimers from native chromatin in the normal fashion under the condition. These results suggest that XP group A, C, D and G cells examined may not be defective in the dimer specific endonuclease and exonuclease per se. 19 references, 3 figures, 2 tables

  19. Bifurcation in epigenetics: Implications in development, proliferation, and diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jost, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Cells often exhibit different and stable phenotypes from the same DNA sequence. Robustness and plasticity of such cellular states are controlled by diverse transcriptional and epigenetic mechanisms, among them the modification of biochemical marks on chromatin. Here, we develop a stochastic model that describes the dynamics of epigenetic marks along a given DNA region. Through mathematical analysis, we show the emergence of bistable and persistent epigenetic states from the cooperative recruitment of modifying enzymes. We also find that the dynamical system exhibits a critical point and displays, in the presence of asymmetries in recruitment, a bifurcation diagram with hysteresis. These results have deep implications for our understanding of epigenetic regulation. In particular, our study allows one to reconcile within the same formalism the robust maintenance of epigenetic identity observed in differentiated cells, the epigenetic plasticity of pluripotent cells during differentiation, and the effects of epigenetic misregulation in diseases. Moreover, it suggests a possible mechanism for developmental transitions where the system is shifted close to the critical point to benefit from high susceptibility to developmental cues.

  20. Recent Developments in Epigenetics of Acute and Chronic Kidney Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, Marpadga A.; Natarajan, Rama

    2015-01-01

    The growing epidemic of obesity and diabetes, the aging population as well as prevalence of drug abuse has led to significant increases in the rates of the closely associated acute and chronic kidney diseases, including diabetic nephropathy. Furthermore, evidence shows that parental behavior and diet can affect the phenotype of subsequent generations via epigenetic transmission mechanisms. These data suggest a strong influence of the environment on disease susceptibility and that, apart from genetic susceptibility, epigenetic mechanisms need to be evaluated to gain critical new information about kidney diseases. Epigenetics is the study of processes that control gene expression and phenotype without alterations in the underlying DNA sequence. Epigenetic modifications, including cytosine DNA methylation and covalent post translational modifications of histones in chromatin are part of the epigenome, the interface between the stable genome and the variable environment. This dynamic epigenetic layer responds to external environmental cues to influence the expression of genes associated with disease states. The field of epigenetics has seen remarkable growth in the past few years with significant advances in basic biology, contributions to human disease, as well as epigenomics technologies. Further understanding of how the renal cell epigenome is altered by metabolic and other stimuli can yield novel new insights into the pathogenesis of kidney diseases. In this review, we have discussed the current knowledge on the role of epigenetic mechanisms (primarily DNA me and histone modifications) in acute and chronic kidney diseases, and their translational potential to identify much needed new therapies. PMID:25993323

  1. Recent developments in epigenetics of acute and chronic kidney diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, Marpadga A; Natarajan, Rama

    2015-08-01

    The growing epidemic of obesity and diabetes, the aging population as well as prevalence of drug abuse has led to significant increases in the rates of the closely associated acute and chronic kidney diseases, including diabetic nephropathy. Furthermore, evidence shows that parental behavior and diet can affect the phenotype of subsequent generations via epigenetic transmission mechanisms. These data suggest a strong influence of the environment on disease susceptibility and that, apart from genetic susceptibility, epigenetic mechanisms need to be evaluated to gain critical new information about kidney diseases. Epigenetics is the study of processes that control gene expression and phenotype without alterations in the underlying DNA sequence. Epigenetic modifications, including cytosine DNA methylation and covalent post-translational modifications of histones in chromatin, are part of the epigenome, the interface between the stable genome and the variable environment. This dynamic epigenetic layer responds to external environmental cues to influence the expression of genes associated with disease states. The field of epigenetics has seen remarkable growth in the past few years with significant advances in basic biology, contributions to human disease, as well as epigenomics technologies. Further understanding of how the renal cell epigenome is altered by metabolic and other stimuli can yield novel new insights into the pathogenesis of kidney diseases. In this review, we have discussed the current knowledge on the role of epigenetic mechanisms (primarily DNAme and histone modifications) in acute and chronic kidney diseases, and their translational potential to identify much needed new therapies.

  2. Differential Chromatin Structure Encompassing Replication Origins in Transformed and Normal Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Paola, Domenic; Rampakakis, Emmanouil; Chan, Man Kid

    2012-01-01

    This study examines the chromatin structure encompassing replication origins in transformed and normal cells. Analysis of the global levels of histone H3 acetylated at K9&14 (open chromatin) and histone H3 trimethylated at K9 (closed chromatin) revealed a higher ratio of open to closed chromatin in the transformed cells. Also, the trithorax and polycomb group proteins, Brg-1 and Bmi-1, respectively, were overexpressed and more abundantly bound to chromatin in the transformed cells. Quantitative comparative analyses of episomal and in situ chromosomal replication origin activity as well as chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays, using specific antibodies targeting members of the pre-replication complex (pre-RC) as well as open/closed chromatin markers encompassing both episomal and chromosomal origins, revealed that episomal origins had similar levels of in vivo activity, nascent DNA abundance, pre-RC protein association, and elevated open chromatin structure at the origin in both cell types. In contrast, the chromosomal origins corresponding to 20mer1, 20mer2, and c-myc displayed a 2- to 3-fold higher activity and pre-RC protein abundance as well as higher ratios of open to closed chromatin and of Brg-1 to Bmi-1 in the transformed cells, whereas the origin associated with the housekeeping lamin B2 gene exhibited similar levels of activity, pre-RC protein abundance, and higher ratios of open to closed chromatin and of Brg-1 to Bmi-1 in both cell types. Nucleosomal positioning analysis, using an MNase-Southern blot assay, showed that all the origin regions examined were situated within regions of inconsistently positioned nucleosomes, with the nucleosomes being spaced farther apart from each other prior to the onset of S phase in both cell types. Overall, the results indicate that cellular transformation is associated with differential epigenetic regulation, whereby chromatin structure is more open, rendering replication origins more accessible to initiator

  3. Chromatin Flavors: Chromatin composition and domain organization in Drosophila melanogaster

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J.G. van Bemmel (Joke)

    2012-01-01

    textabstractChromatin was originally identified by W. Flemming in 1882 as not much more than the stainable substance of the cell nucleus. Flemming named this substance according to the Greek word “chroma”, meaning color. In 1911 chromatin was characterized as proteins, named histones, that

  4. Chromatin Conformation Capture-Based Analysis of Nuclear Architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grob, Stefan; Grossniklaus, Ueli

    2017-01-01

    Nuclear organization and higher-order chromosome structure in interphase nuclei are thought to have important effects on fundamental biological processes, including chromosome condensation, replication, and transcription. Until recently, however, nuclear organization could only be analyzed microscopically. The development of chromatin conformation capture (3C)-based techniques now allows a detailed look at chromosomal architecture from the level of individual loci to the entire genome. Here we provide a robust Hi-C protocol, allowing the analysis of nuclear organization in nuclei from different wild-type and mutant plant tissues. This method is quantitative and provides a highly efficient and comprehensive way to study chromatin organization during plant development, in response to different environmental stimuli, and in mutants disrupting a variety of processes, including epigenetic pathways regulating gene expression.

  5. Involvement of epigenetic modifiers in the pathogenesis of testicular dysgenesis and germ cell cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lawaetz, Andreas C.; Almstrup, Kristian

    2015-01-01

    cell is a fetal germ cell that has been arrested during development due to testicular dysgenesis. CIS cells retain a fetal and open chromatin structure, and recently several epigenetic modifiers have been suggested to be involved in testicular dysgenesis in mice. We here review the possible involvement...... of epigenetic modifiers with a focus on jumonji C enzymes in the development of testicular dysgenesis and germ cell cancer in men....

  6. Keeping it quiet: chromatin control of gammaherpesvirus latency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lieberman, Paul M

    2013-12-01

    The human gammaherpesviruses Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) establish long-term latent infections associated with diverse human cancers. Viral oncogenesis depends on the ability of the latent viral genome to persist in host nuclei as episomes that express a restricted yet dynamic pattern of viral genes. Multiple epigenetic events control viral episome generation and maintenance. This Review highlights some of the recent findings on the role of chromatin assembly, histone and DNA modifications, and higher-order chromosome structures that enable gammaherpesviruses to establish stable latent infections that mediate viral pathogenesis.

  7. The architecture and function of the chromatin replication machinery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Thomas Cr; Costa, Alessandro

    2017-12-01

    Genomic DNA in eukaryotic cells is packaged into nucleosome arrays. During replication, nucleosomes need to be dismantled ahead of the advancing replication fork and reassembled on duplicated DNA. The architecture and function of the core replisome machinery is now beginning to be elucidated, with recent insights shaping our view on DNA replication processes. Simultaneously, breakthroughs in our mechanistic understanding of epigenetic inheritance allow us to build new models of how histone chaperones integrate with the replisome to reshuffle nucleosomes. The emerging picture indicates that the core eukaryotic DNA replication machinery has evolved elements that handle nucleosomes to facilitate chromatin duplication. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  8. Optical tweezers stretching of chromatin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pope, L.H.; Bennink, Martin L.; Greve, Jan

    2003-01-01

    Recently significant success has emerged from exciting research involving chromatin stretching using optical tweezers. These experiments, in which a single chromatin fibre is attached by one end to a micron-sized bead held in an optical trap and to a solid surface or second bead via the other end,

  9. CTCF prevents the epigenetic drift of EBV latency promoter Qp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Italo Tempera

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available The establishment and maintenance of Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV latent infection requires distinct viral gene expression programs. These gene expression programs, termed latency types, are determined largely by promoter selection, and controlled through the interplay between cell-type specific transcription factors, chromatin structure, and epigenetic modifications. We used a genome-wide chromatin-immunoprecipitation (ChIP assay to identify epigenetic modifications that correlate with different latency types. We found that the chromatin insulator protein CTCF binds at several key regulatory nodes in the EBV genome and may compartmentalize epigenetic modifications across the viral genome. Highly enriched CTCF binding sites were identified at the promoter regions upstream of Cp, Wp, EBERs, and Qp. Since Qp is essential for long-term maintenance of viral genomes in type I latency and epithelial cell infections, we focused on the role of CTCF in regulating Qp. Purified CTCF bound approximately 40 bp upstream of the EBNA1 binding sites located at +10 bp relative to the transcriptional initiation site at Qp. Mutagenesis of the CTCF binding site in EBV bacmids resulted in a decrease in the recovery of stable hygromycin-resistant episomes in 293 cells. EBV lacking the Qp CTCF site showed a decrease in Qp transcription initiation and a corresponding increase in Cp and Fp promoter utilization at 8 weeks post-transfection. However, by 16 weeks post-transfection, bacmids lacking CTCF sites had no detectable Qp transcription and showed high levels of histone H3 K9 methylation and CpG DNA methylation at the Qp initiation site. These findings provide direct genetic evidence that CTCF functions as a chromatin insulator that prevents the promiscuous transcription of surrounding genes and blocks the epigenetic silencing of an essential promoter, Qp, during EBV latent infection.

  10. Epigenetic regulation of maspin expression in human ovarian carcinoma cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, Stephen L; Fitzgerald, Matthew P; White, Natalie O; Hitchler, Michael J; Futscher, Bernard W; De Geest, Koen; Domann, Frederick E

    2006-08-01

    Maspin expression is often deregulated in human cancer cells compared to their normal cells due to loss of epigenetic control. In contrast to normal human ovarian surface epithelial (HOSE) cells, ovarian carcinoma cells display a gain of maspin mRNA expression. The objective of this study was to determine whether gain of maspin expression in ovarian cancer is governed by epigenetic mechanisms. We examined the cytosine methylation and chromatin accessibility status of the maspin promoter in normal HOSE cells and ovarian carcinoma cells with real-time RT-PCR, sodium bisulfite genomic sequencing, and chromatin accessibility assays. 5-Aza-2'-deoxycytidine (5-aza-dC) was used to induce demethylation of the maspin promoter. Ad p53 was used to induce transient overexpression of wild-type p53. Normal HOSE cells were maspin-negative in association with methylation of the maspin promoter. In the maspin-positive ovarian cancer cell lines, the maspin promoter was unmethylated. Increased maspin expression in ovarian carcinoma cells was accompanied by a more accessible chromatin structure in the maspin promoter. In the maspin-negative ovarian cancer cell line A222, maspin could be induced following 5-aza-dC treatment or by forced overexpression of p53. These results suggest that changes in cytosine methylation and chromatin accessibility play an important role in maspin expression in human ovarian carcinoma. Deregulation of maspin expression in ovarian cancer is due to loss of epigenetic control as has been shown in other cancers. This observation provides further evidence of the strict epigenetic control of the maspin gene.

  11. CTCF Prevents the Epigenetic Drift of EBV Latency Promoter Qp

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tempera, Italo; Wiedmer, Andreas; Dheekollu, Jayaraju; Lieberman, Paul M.

    2010-01-01

    The establishment and maintenance of Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) latent infection requires distinct viral gene expression programs. These gene expression programs, termed latency types, are determined largely by promoter selection, and controlled through the interplay between cell-type specific transcription factors, chromatin structure, and epigenetic modifications. We used a genome-wide chromatin-immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assay to identify epigenetic modifications that correlate with different latency types. We found that the chromatin insulator protein CTCF binds at several key regulatory nodes in the EBV genome and may compartmentalize epigenetic modifications across the viral genome. Highly enriched CTCF binding sites were identified at the promoter regions upstream of Cp, Wp, EBERs, and Qp. Since Qp is essential for long-term maintenance of viral genomes in type I latency and epithelial cell infections, we focused on the role of CTCF in regulating Qp. Purified CTCF bound ∼40 bp upstream of the EBNA1 binding sites located at +10 bp relative to the transcriptional initiation site at Qp. Mutagenesis of the CTCF binding site in EBV bacmids resulted in a decrease in the recovery of stable hygromycin-resistant episomes in 293 cells. EBV lacking the Qp CTCF site showed a decrease in Qp transcription initiation and a corresponding increase in Cp and Fp promoter utilization at 8 weeks post-transfection. However, by 16 weeks post-transfection, bacmids lacking CTCF sites had no detectable Qp transcription and showed high levels of histone H3 K9 methylation and CpG DNA methylation at the Qp initiation site. These findings provide direct genetic evidence that CTCF functions as a chromatin insulator that prevents the promiscuous transcription of surrounding genes and blocks the epigenetic silencing of an essential promoter, Qp, during EBV latent infection. PMID:20730088

  12. Stem Cells from Dental Pulp: What Epigenetics Can Do with Your Tooth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatriz A. Rodas-Junco

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Adult stem cells have attracted scientific attention because they are able to self-renew and differentiate into several specialized cell types. In this context, human dental tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells (hDT-MSCs have emerged as a possible solution for repairing or regenerating damaged tissues. These cells can be isolated from primary teeth that are naturally replaced, third molars, or other dental tissues and exhibit self-renewal, a high proliferative rate and a great multilineage potential. However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms that determine lineage specification are still largely unknown. It is known that a change in cell fate requires the deletion of existing transcriptional programs, followed by the establishment of a new developmental program to give rise to a new cell lineage. Increasing evidence indicates that chromatin structure conformation can influence cell fate. In this way, reversible chemical modifications at the DNA or histone level, and combinations thereof can activate or inactivate cell-type-specific gene sequences, giving rise to an alternative cell fates. On the other hand, miRNAs are starting to emerge as a possible player in establishing particular somatic lineages. In this review, we discuss two new and promising research fields in medicine and biology, epigenetics and stem cells, by summarizing the properties of hDT-MSCs and highlighting the recent findings on epigenetic contributions to the regulation of cellular differentiation.

  13. Epigenetics and Autoimmune Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quintero-Ronderos, Paula; Montoya-Ortiz, Gladis

    2012-01-01

    Epigenetics is defined as the study of all inheritable and potentially reversible changes in genome function that do not alter the nucleotide sequence within the DNA. Epigenetic mechanisms such as DNA methylation, histone modification, nucleosome positioning, and microRNAs (miRNAs) are essential to carry out key functions in the regulation of gene expression. Therefore, the epigenetic mechanisms are a window to understanding the possible mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of complex diseases such as autoimmune diseases. It is noteworthy that autoimmune diseases do not have the same epidemiology, pathology, or symptoms but do have a common origin that can be explained by the sharing of immunogenetic mechanisms. Currently, epigenetic research is looking for disruption in one or more epigenetic mechanisms to provide new insights into autoimmune diseases. The identification of cell-specific targets of epigenetic deregulation will serve us as clinical markers for diagnosis, disease progression, and therapy approaches. PMID:22536485

  14. Epigenetics and Cellular Metabolism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenyi Xu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Living eukaryotic systems evolve delicate cellular mechanisms for responding to various environmental signals. Among them, epigenetic machinery (DNA methylation, histone modifications, microRNAs, etc. is the hub in transducing external stimuli into transcriptional response. Emerging evidence reveals the concept that epigenetic signatures are essential for the proper maintenance of cellular metabolism. On the other hand, the metabolite, a main environmental input, can also influence the processing of epigenetic memory. Here, we summarize the recent research progress in the epigenetic regulation of cellular metabolism and discuss how the dysfunction of epigenetic machineries influences the development of metabolic disorders such as diabetes and obesity; then, we focus on discussing the notion that manipulating metabolites, the fuel of cell metabolism, can function as a strategy for interfering epigenetic machinery and its related disease progression as well.

  15. Optimized methods of chromatin immunoprecipitation for profiling histone modifications in industrial microalgae Nannochloropsis spp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Li; Xu, Jian

    2018-02-14

    Epigenetic factors such as histone modifications play integral roles in plant development and stress response, yet their implications in algae remain poorly understood. In the industrial oleaginous microalgae Nannochloropsis spp., the lack of an efficient methodology for chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP), which determines the specific genomic location of various histone modifications, has hindered probing the epigenetic basis of their photosynthetic carbon conversion and storage as oil. Here, a detailed ChIP protocol was developed for Nannochloropsis oceanica, which represents a reliable approach for the analysis of histone modifications, chromatin state, and transcription factor-binding sites at the epigenetic level. Using ChIP-qPCR, genes related to photosynthetic carbon fixation in this microalga were systematically assessed. Furthermore, a ChIP-Seq protocol was established and optimized, which generated a genome-wide profile of histone modification events, using histone mark H3K9Ac as an example. These results are the first step for appreciation of the chromatin landscape in industrial oleaginous microalgae and for epigenetics-based microalgal feedstock development. © 2018 Phycological Society of America.

  16. Epigenetic reprogramming in mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, Hugh D; Santos, Fátima; Green, Kelly; Dean, Wendy; Reik, Wolf

    2005-04-15

    Epigenetic marking systems confer stability of gene expression during mammalian development. Genome-wide epigenetic reprogramming occurs at stages when developmental potency of cells changes. At fertilization, the paternal genome exchanges protamines for histones, undergoes DNA demethylation, and acquires histone modifications, whereas the maternal genome appears epigenetically more static. During preimplantation development, there is passive DNA demethylation and further reorganization of histone modifications. In blastocysts, embryonic and extraembryonic lineages first show different epigenetic marks. This epigenetic reprogramming is likely to be needed for totipotency, correct initiation of embryonic gene expression, and early lineage development in the embryo. Comparative work demonstrates reprogramming in all mammalian species analysed, but the extent and timing varies, consistent with notable differences between species during preimplantation development. Parental imprinting marks originate in sperm and oocytes and are generally protected from this genome-wide reprogramming. Early primordial germ cells possess imprinting marks similar to those of somatic cells. However, rapid DNA demethylation after midgestation erases these parental imprints, in preparation for sex-specific de novo methylation during gametogenesis. Aberrant reprogramming of somatic epigenetic marks after somatic cell nuclear transfer leads to epigenetic defects in cloned embryos and stem cells. Links between epigenetic marking systems appear to be developmentally regulated contributing to plasticity. A number of activities that confer epigenetic marks are firmly established, while for those that remove marks, particularly methylation, some interesting candidates have emerged recently which need thorough testing in vivo. A mechanistic understanding of reprogramming will be crucial for medical applications of stem cell technology.

  17. Epigenetics and primary care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Robert; Saul, Robert A

    2013-12-01

    Epigenetics, the study of functionally relevant chemical modifications to DNA that do not involve a change in the DNA nucleotide sequence, is at the interface between research and clinical medicine. Research on epigenetic marks, which regulate gene expression independently of the underlying genetic code, has dramatically changed our understanding of the interplay between genes and the environment. This interplay alters human biology and developmental trajectories, and can lead to programmed human disease years after the environmental exposure. In addition, epigenetic marks are potentially heritable. In this article, we discuss the underlying concepts of epigenetics and address its current and potential applicability for primary care providers.

  18. Epigenetic considerations in aquaculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mackenzie R. Gavery

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetics has attracted considerable attention with respect to its potential value in many areas of agricultural production, particularly under conditions where the environment can be manipulated or natural variation exists. Here we introduce key concepts and definitions of epigenetic mechanisms, including DNA methylation, histone modifications and non-coding RNA, review the current understanding of epigenetics in both fish and shellfish, and propose key areas of aquaculture where epigenetics could be applied. The first key area is environmental manipulation, where the intention is to induce an ‘epigenetic memory’ either within or between generations to produce a desired phenotype. The second key area is epigenetic selection, which, alone or combined with genetic selection, may increase the reliability of producing animals with desired phenotypes. Based on aspects of life history and husbandry practices in aquaculture species, the application of epigenetic knowledge could significantly affect the productivity and sustainability of aquaculture practices. Conversely, clarifying the role of epigenetic mechanisms in aquaculture species may upend traditional assumptions about selection practices. Ultimately, there are still many unanswered questions regarding how epigenetic mechanisms might be leveraged in aquaculture.

  19. Cell identity bookmarking through heterogeneous chromatin landscape maintenance during the cell cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Huaibing; Xi, Yanping; Li, Wei; Li, Jin; Li, Yan; Dong, Shihua; Peng, Lina; Liu, Yaping; Yu, Wenqiang

    2017-11-01

    Genetic and epigenetic information are faithfully duplicated and accurately transmitted to daughter cells to preserve cell identity during the cell cycle. However, how the chromatin-based epigenetic information beyond DNA sequence is stably transmitted along with the disruption and re-establishment of chromatin structure within a cell cycle remains largely unexplored. Through comprehensive analysis DNA methylation and nucleosome positioning patterns of HepG2 cells in G0/G1, early S, late S and G2/M phases, we found that DNA methylation may act as the prime element for epigenetic inheritance after replication, as DNA methylation was extremely stable in each cell cycle phase, while nucleosome occupancy showed notable phase dependent fluctuation. Nucleosome-Secured Regions (NSRs) occupied by polycomb-repressed chromatin played a role in repressing the irrelevant cell type-specific genes and were essential for preventing irrelevant transcription factors binding, while the well-defined Nucleosome-Depleted Regions (NDRs) marked the genes crucial for cell identity maintenance. Chromatin structure at NSRs and NDRs was well maintained throughout the cell cycle, which played crucial roles in steadily preserving the transcriptional identity of the cell to fulfill cell identity maintenance. Collectively, our results demonstrated that while chromatin architecture underwent dynamic changes during cell cycle progression, DNA methylation together with NSRs and NDRs were stable epigenetic elements that were required for faithful transmission to the daughter cell to accurately maintain cell identity during the cell cycle. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Epigenetic marks: regulators of livestock phenotypes and conceivable sources of missing variation in livestock improvement programs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eveline M Ibeagha-Awemu

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Improvement in animal productivity has been achieved over the years through careful breeding and selection programs. Today, variations in the genome are gaining increasing importance in livestock improvement strategies. Genomic information alone however explains only a part of the phenotypic variance in traits. It is likely that a portion of the unaccounted variance is embedded in the epigenome. The epigenome encompasses epigenetic marks such as DNA methylation, histone tail modifications, chromatin remodeling and other molecules that can transmit epigenetic information such as non-coding RNA species. Epigenetic factors respond to external or internal environmental cues such as nutrition, pathogens and climate, and have the ability to change gene expression leading to emergence of specific phenotypes. Accumulating evidence shows that epigenetic marks influence gene expression and phenotypic outcome in livestock species. This review examines available evidence of the influence of epigenetic marks on livestock (cattle, sheep, goat and pig traits and discusses the potential for consideration of epigenetic markers in livestock improvement programs. However, epigenetic research activities on farm animal species are currently limited partly due to lack of recognition, funding and a global network of researchers. Therefore, considerable less attention has been given to epigenetic research in livestock species in comparison to extensive work in humans and model organisms. Elucidating therefore the epigenetic determinants of animal diseases and complex traits may represent one of the principal challenges to use epigenetic markers for further improvement of animal productivity.

  1. Chromatin status and transcription factor binding to gonadotropin promoters in gonadotrope cell lines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Huimin; Hoffmann, Hanne M; Iyer, Anita K; Brayman, Melissa J; Ngo, Cindy; Sunshine, Mary Jean; Mellon, Pamela L

    2017-10-24

    Proper expression of key reproductive hormones from gonadotrope cells of the pituitary is required for pubertal onset and reproduction. To further our understanding of the molecular events taking place during embryonic development, leading to expression of the glycoproteins luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), we characterized chromatin structure changes, imparted mainly by histone modifications, in model gonadotrope cell lines. We evaluated chromatin status and gene expression profiles by chromatin immunoprecipitation assays, DNase sensitivity assay, and RNA sequencing in three developmentally staged gonadotrope cell lines, αT1-1 (progenitor, expressing Cga), αT3-1 (immature, expressing Cga and Gnrhr), and LβT2 (mature, expressing Cga, Gnrhr, Lhb, and Fshb), to assess changes in chromatin status and transcription factor access of gonadotrope-specific genes. We found the common mRNA α-subunit of LH and FSH, called Cga, to have an open chromatin conformation in all three cell lines. In contrast, chromatin status of Gnrhr is open only in αT3-1 and LβT2 cells. Lhb begins to open in LβT2 cells and was further opened by activin treatment. Histone H3 modifications associated with active chromatin were high on Gnrhr in αT3-1 and LβT2, and Lhb in LβT2 cells, while H3 modifications associated with repressed chromatin were low on Gnrhr, Lhb, and Fshb in LβT2 cells. Finally, chromatin status correlates with the progressive access of LHX3 to Cga and Gnrhr, followed by PITX1 binding to the Lhb promoter. Our data show the gonadotrope-specific genes Cga, Gnrhr, Lhb, and Fshb are not only controlled by developmental transcription factors, but also by epigenetic mechanisms that include the modulation of chromatin structure, and histone modifications.

  2. Heterogeneous pattern of DNA methylation in developmentally important genes correlates with its chromatin conformation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinha, Puja; Singh, Kiran; Sachan, Manisha

    2017-01-11

    DNA methylation is a major epigenetic modification, playing a crucial role in the development and differentiation of higher organisms. DNA methylation is also known to regulate transcription by gene repression. Various developmental genes such as c-mos, HoxB5, Sox11, and Sry show tissue-specific gene expression that was shown to be regulated by promoter DNA methylation. The aim of the present study is to investigate the establishment of chromatin marks (active or repressive) in relation to heterogeneous methylation in the promoter regions of these developmentally important genes. Chromatin-immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays were performed to immuno-precipitate chromatin by antibodies against both active (H3K4me3) and repressive (H3K9me3) chromatin regions. The analysis of ChIP results showed that both the percentage input and fold enrichment of activated chromatin was higher in tissues expressing the respective genes as compared to the tissues not expressing the same set of genes. This was true for all the genes selected for the study (c-mos, HoxB5, Sox11, and Sry). These findings illustrate that inconsistent DNA methylation patterns (sporadic, mosaic and heterogeneous) may also influence gene regulation, thereby resulting in the modulation of chromatin conformation. These findings illustrate that various patterns of DNA methylation (asynchronous, mosaic and heterogeneous) correlates with chromatin modification, resulting in the gene regulation.

  3. Small molecule modulators of epigenetic modifications: implications in therapeutics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruthrotha Selvi, B.; Senapati, Parijat; Kundu, Tapas K.

    2012-01-01

    The eukaryotic genome is organized into chromatin, a nucleoprotein complex and a dynamic entity that regulates the spatio-temporal expression of genes in response to the intracellular and extracellular signals. This dynamicity is maintained by several factors, including the chromatin modifying Machineries. Chromatin modifying enzymes (for example, lysine (K) acetyl transferases for acetylation, lysine and arginine (R) methyltransferases for methylation, etc.) by virtue of their modifying abilities of both histones and the non histone components, are vital regulatory factors for gene expression both in physiological as well as pathophysiological conditions. Hence the modulators (inhibitors/activators) of these enzymes, which are capable of altering the gene expression globally, could also be useful in understanding the epigenetic mechanism of gene expression as well as for therapeutic purposes. We have found that acetylation of histone chaperone NPM1 and histones is essential for chromatin-mediated transcriptional activation. Remarkably, NPM1 as well as histones get hyperacetylated predominantly in oral cancer patient samples. We identified NPM1 as a positive regulator of the KAT, p300 autoacetylation, the possible causal mechanism of hyperacetylation. Targeting the acetylation by a water-soluble KAT inhibitor, CTK7A in oral tumour xenografted mice, we could demonstrate that the tumour growth could indeed be retarded upon the inhibition of KAT autoacetylation. Presently, we are studying the histone modification language in oral cancer, especially in the context of acetylation and methylation which could be potential targets for combinatorial epigenetic therapeutics. (author)

  4. Metaphase chromosome analysis by ligation-mediated PCR: heritable chromatin structure and a comparison of active and inactive X chromosomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hershkovitz, M; Riggs, A D

    1995-03-14

    We report that ligation-mediated PCR (LMPCR) can be used for high-resolution study of metaphase chromosomes, and we discuss the role of metaphase chromatin structure in the preservation of differentiated cell states. The X chromosome-linked human PGK1 (phosphoglycerate kinase 1) promoter region was investigated, and euchromatic active X chromosome (Xa) metaphase chromatin was compared with interphase Xa chromatin and to heterochromatic inactive X chromosome (Xi) metaphase and interphase chromatin. We find that (i) good-quality data at single-nucleotide resolution can be obtained by LMPCR analysis of dimethyl sulfate-treated intact metaphase cells; (ii) transcription factors present on the Xa promoter of interphase chromatin are not present on metaphase chromatin, establishing that the transcription complex on the PGK1 promoter must form de novo each cell generation; and (iii) the dimethyl sulfate reactivity pattern of Xa and Xi chromatin at metaphase is very similar to that of naked DNA. These results are discussed in the context of models for heritable chromatin structure and epigenetic mechanisms for cell memory, and they are also relevant to more general aspects of chromatin structure and differences between euchromatin and heterochromatin.

  5. Genetic and epigenetic control of plant heat responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junzhong eLiu

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Plants have evolved sophisticated genetic and epigenetic regulatory systems to respond quickly to unfavorable environmental conditions such as heat, cold, drought, and pathogen infections. In particular, heat greatly affects plant growth and development, immunity and circadian rhythm, and poses a serious threat to the global food supply. According to temperatures exposing, heat can be usually classified as warm ambient temperature (about 22-27℃, high temperature (27-30℃ and extremely high temperature (37-42℃, also known as heat stress for the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. The genetic mechanisms of plant responses to heat have been well studied, mainly focusing on elevated ambient temperature-mediated morphological acclimation and acceleration of flowering, modulation of plant immunity and circadian clock by high temperatures, and thermotolerance to heat stress. Recently, great progress has been achieved on epigenetic regulation of heat responses, including DNA methylation, histone modifications, histone variants, ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling, histone chaperones, small RNAs, long non-coding RNAs and other undefined epigenetic mechanisms. These epigenetic modifications regulate the expression of heat-responsive genes and function to prevent heat-related damage. This review focuses on recent progresses regarding the genetic and epigenetic control of heat responses in plants, and pays more attention to the role of the major epigenetic mechanisms in plant heat responses. Further research perspectives are also discussed.

  6. Epigenetics, Nervous System Tumors, and Cancer Stem Cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qureshi, Irfan A.; Mehler, Mark F.

    2011-01-01

    Recent advances have begun to elucidate how epigenetic regulatory mechanisms are responsible for establishing and maintaining cell identity during development and adult life and how the disruption of these processes is, not surprisingly, one of the hallmarks of cancer. In this review, we describe the major epigenetic mechanisms (i.e., DNA methylation, histone and chromatin modification, non-coding RNA deployment, RNA editing, and nuclear reorganization) and discuss the broad spectrum of epigenetic alterations that have been uncovered in pediatric and adult nervous system tumors. We also highlight emerging evidence that suggests epigenetic deregulation is a characteristic feature of so-called cancer stem cells (CSCs), which are thought to be present in a range of nervous system tumors and responsible for tumor maintenance, progression, treatment resistance, and recurrence. We believe that better understanding how epigenetic mechanisms operate in neural cells and identifying the etiologies and consequences of epigenetic deregulation in tumor cells and CSCs, in particular, are likely to promote the development of enhanced molecular diagnostics and more targeted and effective therapeutic agents for treating recalcitrant nervous system tumors

  7. An epigenetic hypothesis of aging-related cognitive dysfunction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marsha R Penner

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available This brief review will focus on a new hypothesis for the role of epigenetic mechanisms in aging-related disruptions of synaptic plasticity and memory. Epigenetics refers to a set of potentially self-perpetuating, covalent modifications of DNA and post-translational modifications of nuclear proteins that produce lasting alterations in chromatin structure. These mechanisms, in turn, result in alterations in specific patterns of gene expression. Aging-related memory decline is manifest prominently in declarative/episodic memory and working memory, memory modalities anatomically based largely in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex, respectively. The neurobiological underpinnings of age-related memory deficits include aberrant changes in gene transcription that ultimately affect the ability of the aged brain to be “plastic”. The molecular mechanisms underlying these changes in gene transcription are not currently known, but recent work points toward a potential novel mechanism, dysregulation of epigenetic mechanisms. This has led us to hypothesize that dysregulation of epigenetic control mechanisms and aberrant epigenetic “marks” drive aging-related cognitive dysfunction. Here we focus on this theme, reviewing current knowledge concerning epigenetic molecular mechanisms, as well as recent results suggesting disruption of plasticity and memory formation during aging. Finally, several open questions will be discussed that we believe will fuel experimental discovery.

  8. Epigenetics, Nervous System Tumors, and Cancer Stem Cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qureshi, Irfan A. [Rosyln and Leslie Goldstein Laboratory for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Institute for Brain Disorders and Neural Regeneration, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Department of Neurology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Rose F. Kennedy Center for Research on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Mehler, Mark F., E-mail: mark.mehler@einstein.yu.edu [Rosyln and Leslie Goldstein Laboratory for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Institute for Brain Disorders and Neural Regeneration, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Department of Neurology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Department of Neuroscience, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Rose F. Kennedy Center for Research on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States)

    2011-09-13

    Recent advances have begun to elucidate how epigenetic regulatory mechanisms are responsible for establishing and maintaining cell identity during development and adult life and how the disruption of these processes is, not surprisingly, one of the hallmarks of cancer. In this review, we describe the major epigenetic mechanisms (i.e., DNA methylation, histone and chromatin modification, non-coding RNA deployment, RNA editing, and nuclear reorganization) and discuss the broad spectrum of epigenetic alterations that have been uncovered in pediatric and adult nervous system tumors. We also highlight emerging evidence that suggests epigenetic deregulation is a characteristic feature of so-called cancer stem cells (CSCs), which are thought to be present in a range of nervous system tumors and responsible for tumor maintenance, progression, treatment resistance, and recurrence. We believe that better understanding how epigenetic mechanisms operate in neural cells and identifying the etiologies and consequences of epigenetic deregulation in tumor cells and CSCs, in particular, are likely to promote the development of enhanced molecular diagnostics and more targeted and effective therapeutic agents for treating recalcitrant nervous system tumors.

  9. Research highlights: microfluidic-enabled single-cell epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhar, Manjima; Khojah, Reem; Tay, Andy; Di Carlo, Dino

    2015-11-07

    Individual cells are the fundamental unit of life with diverse functions from metabolism to motility. In multicellular organisms, a single genome can give rise to tremendous variability across tissues at the single-cell level due to epigenetic differences in the genes that are expressed. Signals from the local environment or a history of signals can drive these variations, and tissues have many cell types that play separate roles. This epigenetic heterogeneity is of biological importance in normal functions such as tissue morphogenesis and can contribute to development or resistance of cancer, or other disease states. Therefore, an improved understanding of variations at the single cell level are fundamental to understanding biology and developing new approaches to combating disease. Traditional approaches to characterize epigenetic modifications of chromatin or the transcriptome of cells have often focused on blended responses of many cells in a tissue; however, such bulk measures lose spatial and temporal differences that occur from cell to cell, and cannot uncover novel or rare populations of cells. Here we highlight a flurry of recent activity to identify the mRNA profiles from thousands of single-cells as well as chromatin accessibility and histone marks on single to few hundreds of cells. Microfluidics and microfabrication have played a central role in the range of new techniques, and will likely continue to impact their further development towards routine single-cell epigenetic analysis.

  10. Combining genomic and proteomic approaches for epigenetics research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Yumiao; Garcia, Benjamin A

    2014-01-01

    Epigenetics is the study of changes in gene expression or cellular phenotype that do not change the DNA sequence. In this review, current methods, both genomic and proteomic, associated with epigenetics research are discussed. Among them, chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) followed by sequencing and other ChIP-based techniques are powerful techniques for genome-wide profiling of DNA-binding proteins, histone post-translational modifications or nucleosome positions. However, mass spectrometry-based proteomics is increasingly being used in functional biological studies and has proved to be an indispensable tool to characterize histone modifications, as well as DNA–protein and protein–protein interactions. With the development of genomic and proteomic approaches, combination of ChIP and mass spectrometry has the potential to expand our knowledge of epigenetics research to a higher level. PMID:23895656

  11. Epigenetic Basis of Cellular Senescence and Its Implications in Aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nacarelli, Timothy; Liu, Pingyu; Zhang, Rugang

    2017-11-24

    Cellular senescence is a tumor suppressive response that has become recognized as a major contributor of tissue aging. Senescent cells undergo a stable proliferative arrest that protects against neoplastic transformation, but acquire a secretory phenotype that has long-term deleterious effects. Studies are still unraveling the effector mechanisms that underlie these senescence responses with the goal to identify therapeutic interventions. Such effector mechanisms have been linked to the dramatic remodeling in the epigenetic and chromatin landscape that accompany cellular senescence. We discuss these senescence-associated epigenetic changes and their impact on the senescence phenotypes, notably the proliferative arrest and senescence associated secretory phenotype (SASP). We also explore possible epigenetic targets to suppress the deleterious effects of senescent cells that contribute towards aging.

  12. Interplay between genetic and epigenetic mechanisms in rheumatoid arthritis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank-Bertoncelj, Mojca; Klein, Kerstin; Gay, Steffen

    2017-04-01

    Genetic and environmental factors contribute to the risk for rheumatoid arthritis (RA), with epigenetics serving as a possible interface through which risk factors contribute to RA. High-throughput technologies for interrogating genome and epigenome, and the availability of genetic and epigenetic datasets across a diversity of cell types, enable the identification of candidate causal genetic variants for RA to study their function in core RA processes. To date, RA risk variants were studied in the immune cells but not joint resident cells, for example, synovial fibroblasts. Synovial fibroblasts from different joints are distinct, anatomically specialized cells, defined by joint-specific transcriptomes, epigenomes and phenotypes. Cell type-specific analysis of epigenetic changes, together with genetic fine mapping and interrogation of chromatin 3D interactions may identify new disease relevant pathways, potential therapeutic targets and biomarkers for RA progression or therapy response.

  13. Chromatin and Transcription in Yeast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rando, Oliver J.; Winston, Fred

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the mechanisms by which chromatin structure controls eukaryotic transcription has been an intense area of investigation for the past 25 years. Many of the key discoveries that created the foundation for this field came from studies of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, including the discovery of the role of chromatin in transcriptional silencing, as well as the discovery of chromatin-remodeling factors and histone modification activities. Since that time, studies in yeast have continued to contribute in leading ways. This review article summarizes the large body of yeast studies in this field. PMID:22345607

  14. Toxoplasma gondii gene expression is under the control of regulatory pathways acting through chromatin structure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bougdour A.

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available The activity state of a gene is determined by a complex regulatory network of co-acting factors affecting the structure of the chromatin into which the gene is embedded. While significant changes of the transcriptome occur during cell differentiation in apicomplexan parasites, basic mechanisms controlling gene expression are still unknown. Recent studies support and expand the concept of the chromatin environment being key factor for the control of transcriptional activity in these lower eukaryotes organisms. Here, we review recent advances in the field of epigenetic gene regulation in Toxoplasma gondii, the model apicomplexan.

  15. Epigenetic regulation in Autism spectrum disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sraboni Chaudhury

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Autism spectrum disorder (ASD is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by an impaired social communication skill and often results in repetitive, stereotyped behavior which is observed in children during the first few years of life. Other characteristic of this disorder includes language disabilities, difficulties in sensory integration, lack of reciprocal interactions and in some cases, cognitive delays. One percentage of the general population is affected by ASD and is four times more common in boys than girls. There are hundreds of genes, which has been identified to be associated with ASD etiology. However it remains difficult to comprehend our understanding in defining the genetic architecture necessary for complete exposition of its pathophysiology. Seeing the complexity of the disease, it is important to adopt a multidisciplinary approach which should not only focus on the “genetics” of autism but also on epigenetics, transcriptomics, immune system disruption and environmental factors that could all impact the pathogenesis of the disease. As environmental factors also play a key role in regulating the trigger of ASD, the role of chromatin remodeling and DNA methylation has started to emerge. Such epigenetic modifications directly link molecular regulatory pathways and environmental factors, which might be able to explain some aspects of complex disorders like ASD. The present review will focus on the role of epigenetic regulation in defining the underlying cause for ASD

  16. Epigenetic memory in mammals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zoe eMigicovsky

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetic information can be passed on from one generation to another via DNA methylation, histone modifications and changes in small RNAs, a process called epigenetic memory. During a mammal’s lifecycle epigenetic reprogramming, or the resetting of most epigenetic marks, occurs twice. The first instance of reprogramming occurs in primordial germ cells and the second occurs following fertilization. These processes may be both passive and active. In order for epigenetic inheritance to occur the epigenetic modifications must be able to escape reprogramming. There are several examples supporting this non-Mendelian mechanism of inheritance including the prepacking of early developmental genes in histones instead of protamines in sperm, genomic imprinting via methylation marks, the retention of CenH3 in mammalian sperm and the inheritance of piwi-associated interfering RNAs. The ability of mammals to pass on epigenetic information to their progeny provides clear evidence that inheritance is not restricted to DNA sequence and epigenetics plays a key role in producing viable offspring.

  17. Epigenetic modifications unlock the milk protein gene loci during mouse mammary gland development and differentiation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monique Rijnkels

    Full Text Available Unlike other tissues, development and differentiation of the mammary gland occur mostly after birth. The roles of systemic hormones and local growth factors important for this development and functional differentiation are well-studied. In other tissues, it has been shown that chromatin organization plays a key role in transcriptional regulation and underlies epigenetic regulation during development and differentiation. However, the role of chromatin organization in mammary gland development and differentiation is less well-defined. Here, we have studied the changes in chromatin organization at the milk protein gene loci (casein, whey acidic protein, and others in the mouse mammary gland before and after functional differentiation.Distal regulatory elements within the casein gene cluster and whey acidic protein gene region have an open chromatin organization after pubertal development, while proximal promoters only gain open-chromatin marks during pregnancy in conjunction with the major induction of their expression. In contrast, other milk protein genes, such as alpha-lactalbumin, already have an open chromatin organization in the mature virgin gland. Changes in chromatin organization in the casein gene cluster region that are present after puberty persisted after lactation has ceased, while the changes which occurred during pregnancy at the gene promoters were not maintained. In general, mammary gland expressed genes and their regulatory elements exhibit developmental stage- and tissue-specific chromatin organization.A progressive gain of epigenetic marks indicative of open/active chromatin on genes marking functional differentiation accompanies the development of the mammary gland. These results support a model in which a chromatin organization is established during pubertal development that is then poised to respond to the systemic hormonal signals of pregnancy and lactation to achieve the full functional capacity of the mammary gland.

  18. Epigenetic modifications unlock the milk protein gene loci during mouse mammary gland development and differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rijnkels, Monique; Freeman-Zadrowski, Courtneay; Hernandez, Joseph; Potluri, Vani; Wang, Liguo; Li, Wei; Lemay, Danielle G

    2013-01-01

    Unlike other tissues, development and differentiation of the mammary gland occur mostly after birth. The roles of systemic hormones and local growth factors important for this development and functional differentiation are well-studied. In other tissues, it has been shown that chromatin organization plays a key role in transcriptional regulation and underlies epigenetic regulation during development and differentiation. However, the role of chromatin organization in mammary gland development and differentiation is less well-defined. Here, we have studied the changes in chromatin organization at the milk protein gene loci (casein, whey acidic protein, and others) in the mouse mammary gland before and after functional differentiation. Distal regulatory elements within the casein gene cluster and whey acidic protein gene region have an open chromatin organization after pubertal development, while proximal promoters only gain open-chromatin marks during pregnancy in conjunction with the major induction of their expression. In contrast, other milk protein genes, such as alpha-lactalbumin, already have an open chromatin organization in the mature virgin gland. Changes in chromatin organization in the casein gene cluster region that are present after puberty persisted after lactation has ceased, while the changes which occurred during pregnancy at the gene promoters were not maintained. In general, mammary gland expressed genes and their regulatory elements exhibit developmental stage- and tissue-specific chromatin organization. A progressive gain of epigenetic marks indicative of open/active chromatin on genes marking functional differentiation accompanies the development of the mammary gland. These results support a model in which a chromatin organization is established during pubertal development that is then poised to respond to the systemic hormonal signals of pregnancy and lactation to achieve the full functional capacity of the mammary gland.

  19. Epigenetics of Estrogen Receptor Signaling: Role in Hormonal Cancer Progression and Therapy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mann, Monica; Cortez, Valerie [Department of Cellular and Structural Biology, UTHSCSA, 7703 Floyd Curl Drive, San Antonio, TX 78229 (United States); Vadlamudi, Ratna K., E-mail: vadlamudi@uthscsa.edu [Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, UTHSCSA, 7703 Floyd Curl Drive, San Antonio, TX 78229 (United States)

    2011-03-29

    Estrogen receptor (ERα) signaling plays a key role in hormonal cancer progression. ERα is a ligand-dependent transcription factor that modulates gene transcription via recruitment to the target gene chromatin. Emerging evidence suggests that ERα signaling has the potential to contribute to epigenetic changes. Estrogen stimulation is shown to induce several histone modifications at the ERα target gene promoters including acetylation, phosphorylation and methylation via dynamic interactions with histone modifying enzymes. Deregulation of enzymes involved in the ERα -mediated epigenetic pathway could play a vital role in ERα driven neoplastic processes. Unlike genetic alterations, epigenetic changes are reversible, and hence offer novel therapeutic opportunities to reverse ERα driven epigenetic changes. In this review, we summarize current knowledge on mechanisms by which ERα signaling potentiates epigenetic changes in cancer cells via histone modifications.

  20. Epigenetics of Estrogen Receptor Signaling: Role in Hormonal Cancer Progression and Therapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mann, Monica; Cortez, Valerie; Vadlamudi, Ratna K.

    2011-01-01

    Estrogen receptor (ERα) signaling plays a key role in hormonal cancer progression. ERα is a ligand-dependent transcription factor that modulates gene transcription via recruitment to the target gene chromatin. Emerging evidence suggests that ERα signaling has the potential to contribute to epigenetic changes. Estrogen stimulation is shown to induce several histone modifications at the ERα target gene promoters including acetylation, phosphorylation and methylation via dynamic interactions with histone modifying enzymes. Deregulation of enzymes involved in the ERα -mediated epigenetic pathway could play a vital role in ERα driven neoplastic processes. Unlike genetic alterations, epigenetic changes are reversible, and hence offer novel therapeutic opportunities to reverse ERα driven epigenetic changes. In this review, we summarize current knowledge on mechanisms by which ERα signaling potentiates epigenetic changes in cancer cells via histone modifications

  1. Effect of replication on epigenetic memory and consequences on gene transcription

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zerihun, Mehari B.; Vaillant, Cédric; Jost, Daniel

    2015-04-01

    Gene activity in eukaryotes is in part regulated at the level of chromatin through the assembly of local chromatin states that are more or less permissive to transcription. How do these chromatin states achieve their functions and whether or not they contribute to the epigenetic inheritance of the transcriptional program remain to be elucidated. In cycling cells, stability is indeed strongly challenged by the periodic occurrence of replication and cell division. To address this question, we perform simulations of the stochastic dynamics of chromatin states when driven out-of-equilibrium by periodic perturbations. We show how epigenetic memory is significantly affected by the cell cycle length. In addition, we develop a simple model to connect the epigenetic state to the transcriptional state and gene activity. In particular, it suggests that replication may induce transcriptional bursting at repressive loci. Finally, we discuss how our findings—effect of replication and link to gene transcription—have original and deep implications to various biological contexts of epigenetic memory.

  2. Inhibition of osteoclastogenesis and inflammatory bone resorption by targeting BET proteins and epigenetic regulation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Park-Min, Kyung-Hyun; Lim, Elisha; Lee, Min Joon; Park, Sung Ho; Giannopoulou, Eugenia; Yarilina, Anna; van der Meulen, Marjolein; Zhao, Baohong; Smithers, Nicholas; Witherington, Jason; Lee, Kevin; Tak, Paul P.; Prinjha, Rab K.; Ivashkiv, Lionel B.

    2014-01-01

    Emerging evidence suggests that RANKL-induced changes in chromatin state are important for osteoclastogenesis, but these epigenetic mechanisms are not well understood and have not been therapeutically targeted. In this study, we find that the small molecule I-BET151 that targets bromo and

  3. Characterization of the Epigenetic Changes During Human Gonadal Primordial Germ Cells Reprogramming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eguizabal, C; Herrera, L; De Oñate, L; Montserrat, N; Hajkova, P; Izpisua Belmonte, J C

    2016-09-01

    Epigenetic reprogramming is a central process during mammalian germline development. Genome-wide DNA demethylation in primordial germ cells (PGCs) is a prerequisite for the erasure of epigenetic memory, preventing the transmission of epimutations to the next generation. Apart from DNA demethylation, germline reprogramming has been shown to entail reprogramming of histone marks and chromatin remodelling. Contrary to other animal models, there is limited information about the epigenetic dynamics during early germ cell development in humans. Here, we provide further characterization of the epigenetic configuration of the early human gonadal PGCs. We show that early gonadal human PGCs are DNA hypomethylated and their chromatin is characterized by low H3K9me2 and high H3K27me3 marks. Similarly to previous observations in mice, human gonadal PGCs undergo dynamic chromatin changes concomitant with the erasure of genomic imprints. Interestingly, and contrary to mouse early germ cells, expression of BLIMP1/PRDM1 persists in through all gestational stages in human gonadal PGCs and is associated with nuclear lysine-specific demethylase-1. Our work provides important additional information regarding the chromatin changes associated with human PGCs development between 6 and 13 weeks of gestation in male and female gonads. Stem Cells 2016;34:2418-2428. © 2016 AlphaMed Press.

  4. Epigenetic analysis of human spermatozoa after their injection into ovulated mouse oocytes

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fulka, Helena; Barnetová, I.; Moško, T.; Fulka, J.

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 23, č. 3 (2008), s. 627-634 ISSN 1355-4786 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GD204/05/H023 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50520514 Keywords : spermatozoa * epigenetics * chromatin * acetylation * methylation Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 7.590, year: 2008

  5. Genome-Wide Analysis of Chromatin Accessibility in Arabidopsis Infected with Pseudomonas syringae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bordiya, Yogendra; Kang, Hong-Gu

    2017-01-01

    Changes in chromatin accessibility are an important aspect of the molecular changes that occur in eukaryotic cells responding to stress, and they appear to play a critical role in stress-induced transcriptional activation/reprogramming and epigenetic changes. In plants, pathogen infection has been shown to induce rapid and drastic transcriptional reprogramming; growing evidence suggests that chromatin remodeling plays an essential role in this phenomenon. The recent development of genomic tools to assess chromatin accessibility presents a significant opportunity to investigate the relationship between chromatin dynamicity and gene expression. In this protocol, we have adopted a popular chromatin accessibility assay, DNase-seq, to measure chromatin accessibility in Arabidopsis infected with the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato (Pst). DNase-seq provides information on chromatin accessibility through the sequencing of DNA fragments generated by DNase I digestion of open chromatin, followed by mapping these sequences on a reference genome. Of the two popular DNase-seq approaches, we based our method on the Stamatoyannopoulos protocol, which involves two DNase cleavages rather than a single cleavage, followed by size fractionation. Please note that this two-cleavage approach is widely accepted and has been used extensively by ENCODE (Encyclopedia of DNA Elements) project, a public research consortium investigating cis- and trans-elements in the transcriptional regulation in animal cells. To enhance the quality of the chromatin accessibility assay, we modified this protocol by including two centrifugation steps for nuclear enrichment and size fractionation and an extra washing step for removal of chloroplasts and Pst. The outcomes obtained by this approach are also discussed.

  6. The Yin and Yang of chromatin dynamics in adult stem cell fate selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adam, Rene C.; Fuchs, Elaine

    2015-01-01

    Adult organisms rely on tissue stem cells for maintenance and repair. During homeostasis, the concerted action of local niche signals and epigenetic regulators establish stable gene expression patterns to ensure that stem cells are not lost over time. However, stem cells also provide host tissues with a remarkable plasticity to respond to perturbations. How adult stem cells choose and acquire new fates is unknown, but the genome-wide mapping of epigenetic landscapes suggests a critical role for chromatin remodeling in these processes. Here, we explore the emerging role of chromatin modifiers and pioneer transcription factors in adult stem cell fate decisions and plasticity, which ensure that selective lineage choices are only made when environmentally cued. PMID:26689127

  7. Scrutinizing the epigenetics revolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meloni, Maurizio; Testa, Giuseppe

    2014-11-01

    Epigenetics is one of the most rapidly expanding fields in the life sciences. Its rise is frequently framed as a revolutionary turn that heralds a new epoch both for gene-based epistemology and for the wider discourse on life that pervades knowledge-intensive societies of the molecular age. The fundamentals of this revolution remain however to be scrutinized, and indeed the very contours of what counts as 'epigenetic' are often blurred. This is reflected also in the mounting discourse on the societal implications of epigenetics, in which vast expectations coexist with significant uncertainty about what aspects of this science are most relevant for politics or policy alike. This is therefore a suitable time to reflect on the directions that social theory could most productively take in the scrutiny of this revolution. Here we take this opportunity in both its scholarly and normative dimension, that is, proposing a roadmap for social theorizing on epigenetics that does not shy away from, and indeed hopefully guides, the framing of its most socially relevant outputs. To this end, we start with an epistemological reappraisal of epigenetic discourse that valorizes the blurring of meanings as a critical asset for the field and privileged analytical entry point. We then propose three paths of investigation. The first looks at the structuring elements of controversies and visions around epigenetics. The second probes the mutual constitution between the epigenetic reordering of living phenomena and the normative settlements that orient individual and collective responsibilities. The third highlights the material import of epigenetics and the molecularization of culture that it mediates. We suggest that these complementary strands provide both an epistemically and socially self-reflective framework to advance the study of epigenetics as a molecular juncture between nature and nurture and thus as the new critical frontier in the social studies of the life sciences.

  8. Scrutinizing the epigenetics revolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meloni, Maurizio; Testa, Giuseppe

    2014-01-01

    Epigenetics is one of the most rapidly expanding fields in the life sciences. Its rise is frequently framed as a revolutionary turn that heralds a new epoch both for gene-based epistemology and for the wider discourse on life that pervades knowledge-intensive societies of the molecular age. The fundamentals of this revolution remain however to be scrutinized, and indeed the very contours of what counts as ‘epigenetic' are often blurred. This is reflected also in the mounting discourse on the societal implications of epigenetics, in which vast expectations coexist with significant uncertainty about what aspects of this science are most relevant for politics or policy alike. This is therefore a suitable time to reflect on the directions that social theory could most productively take in the scrutiny of this revolution. Here we take this opportunity in both its scholarly and normative dimension, that is, proposing a roadmap for social theorizing on epigenetics that does not shy away from, and indeed hopefully guides, the framing of its most socially relevant outputs. To this end, we start with an epistemological reappraisal of epigenetic discourse that valorizes the blurring of meanings as a critical asset for the field and privileged analytical entry point. We then propose three paths of investigation. The first looks at the structuring elements of controversies and visions around epigenetics. The second probes the mutual constitution between the epigenetic reordering of living phenomena and the normative settlements that orient individual and collective responsibilities. The third highlights the material import of epigenetics and the molecularization of culture that it mediates. We suggest that these complementary strands provide both an epistemically and socially self-reflective framework to advance the study of epigenetics as a molecular juncture between nature and nurture and thus as the new critical frontier in the social studies of the life sciences. PMID

  9. Quantitative Proteomic Analysis of Replicative and Nonreplicative Forms Reveals Important Insights into Chromatin Biology of Trypanosoma cruzi*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leandro de Jesus, Teresa Cristina; Calderano, Simone Guedes; Vitorino, Francisca Nathalia de Luna; Llanos, Ricardo Pariona; Lopes, Mariana de Camargo; de Araújo, Christiane Bezerra; Thiemann, Otavio Henrique; Reis, Marcelo da Silva; Elias, Maria Carolina

    2017-01-01

    Chromatin associated proteins are key regulators of many important processes in the cell. Trypanosoma cruzi, a protozoa flagellate that causes Chagas disease, alternates between replicative and nonreplicative forms accompanied by a shift on global transcription levels and by changes in its chromatin architecture. Here, we investigated the T. cruzi chromatin proteome using three different protocols and compared it between replicative (epimastigote) and nonreplicative (trypomastigote) forms by high-resolution mass spectrometry. More than 2000 proteins were identified and quantified both in chromatin and nonchromatin extracts. Besides histones and other known nuclear proteins, trypanosomes chromatin also contains metabolic (mainly from carbohydrate pathway), cytoskeleton and many other proteins with unknown functions. Strikingly, the two parasite forms differ greatly regarding their chromatin-associated factors composition and amount. Although the nucleosome content is the same for both life forms (as seen by MNase digestion), the remaining proteins were much less detected in nonreplicative forms, suggesting that they have a naked chromatin. Proteins associated to DNA proliferation, such as PCNA, RPA, and DNA topoisomerases were exclusively found in the chromatin of replicative stages. On the other hand, the nonreplicative stages have an enrichment of a histone H2B variant. Furthermore, almost 20% of replicative stages chromatin-associated proteins are expressed in nonreplicative forms, but located at nonchromatin space. We identified different classes of proteins including phosphatases and a Ran-binding protein, that may shuttle between chromatin and nonchromatin space during differentiation. Seven proteins, including those with unknown functions, were selected for further validation. We confirmed their location in chromatin and their differential expression, using Western blotting assays and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP). Our results indicate that the

  10. A two-step mechanism for epigenetic specification of centromere identity and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fachinetti, Daniele; Folco, H Diego; Nechemia-Arbely, Yael; Valente, Luis P; Nguyen, Kristen; Wong, Alex J; Zhu, Quan; Holland, Andrew J; Desai, Arshad; Jansen, Lars E T; Cleveland, Don W

    2013-09-01

    The basic determinant of chromosome inheritance, the centromere, is specified in many eukaryotes by an epigenetic mark. Using gene targeting in human cells and fission yeast, chromatin containing the centromere-specific histone H3 variant CENP-A is demonstrated to be the epigenetic mark that acts through a two-step mechanism to identify, maintain and propagate centromere function indefinitely. Initially, centromere position is replicated and maintained by chromatin assembled with the centromere-targeting domain (CATD) of CENP-A substituted into H3. Subsequently, nucleation of kinetochore assembly onto CATD-containing chromatin is shown to require either the amino- or carboxy-terminal tail of CENP-A for recruitment of inner kinetochore proteins, including stabilizing CENP-B binding to human centromeres or direct recruitment of CENP-C, respectively.

  11. Epigenetic mechanisms in neurogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Bing; Christian, Kimberly M.; He, Chuan; Jin, Peng; Ming, Guo-li; Song, Hongjun

    2017-01-01

    In the embryonic and adult brain, neural stem cells proliferate and give rise to neurons and glia through highly regulated processes. Epigenetic mechanisms — including DNA and histone modifications, as well as regulation by non-coding RNAs — have pivotal roles in different stages of neurogenesis. Aberrant epigenetic regulation also contributes to the pathogenesis of various brain disorders. Here, we review recent advances in our understanding of epigenetic regulation in neurogenesis and its dysregulation in brain disorders, including discussion of newly identified DNA cytosine modifications. We also briefly cover the emerging field of epitranscriptomics, which involves modifications of mRNAs and long non-coding RNAs. PMID:27334043

  12. Epigenetic Mechanisms in Asthma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeVries, Avery; Vercelli, Donata

    2016-03-01

    Asthma and allergic diseases are among the most prevalent chronic noncommunicable diseases of childhood, but the underlying pathogenetic mechanisms are poorly understood. Because epigenetic mechanisms link gene regulation to environmental cues and developmental trajectories, their contribution to asthma and allergy pathogenesis is under active investigation. DNA methylation signatures associated with concurrent disease and with the development of asthma during childhood asthma have been identified, but their significance is not easily interpretable. On the other hand, the characterization of early epigenetic predictors of asthma points to a potential role of epigenetic mechanisms in regulating the inception of, and the susceptibility to, this disease.

  13. Chromatin enrichment of histone marks H4Ac and H3K9me3 in TP53 gene domain in breast cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santos G. C. Jr

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available In non-cancerous breast cell lines HB2 and MCF10A the TP53 gene is localized inside a relatively small ~ 50 kb loop domain delimited by two S/MARs. Aim. To analyze the chromatin markers H4Ac and H3K9me3 of these two S/MARs and of the TP53 gene P1 promoter in different breast cells lines. Methods. We used chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP to characterize the chromatin status of these S/MARs elements in breast non-cancerous cell lines HB2 and MCF10A and cancerous MCF-7, MDA-MB-231, BT-474 and T47D cell lines, by chromatin enrichment of H4Ac and H3K9me3 epigenetic markers, hallmarks of open and closed chromatin, respectively. Results. We found that these chromatin epigenetic markers are differentially distributed in S/MARs for all analyzed breast cell lines. Conclusions. We found no correlation between S/MARs and chromatin epige- netic status, suggesting that nuclear matrix fixation and chromatin status can be independent. High enrichment of H3K9me3 in the TP53 gene P1 promoter region in MCF-7, could explain lower levels of the TP53 expression, described earlier by our group.

  14. Epigenetics: SUPERMAN dresses up.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lachner, Monika

    2002-06-25

    DNA and histone methylation have been implicated in epigenetic gene regulation. Recent studies in Neurospora and now Arabidopsis indicate that histone methylation can direct DNA methylation, suggesting that these two methylation systems have been functionally linked during evolution.

  15. Eating Disorders and Epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thaler, Lea; Steiger, Howard

    2017-01-01

    Eating disorders (EDs) are characterized by intense preoccupation with shape and weight and maladaptive eating practices. The complex of symptoms that characterize EDs often arise through the activation of latent genetic potentials by environmental exposures, and epigenetic mechanisms are believed to link environmental exposures to gene expression. This chapter provides an overview of genetic factors acting in the etiology of EDs. It then provides a background to the hypothesis that epigenetic mechanisms link stresses such as obstetric complications and childhood abuse as well as effects of malnutrition to eating disorders (EDs). The chapter then summarizes the emerging body of literature on epigenetics and EDs-mainly studies on DNA methylation in samples of anorexia and bulimia. The available evidence base suggests that an epigenetically informed perspective contributes in valuable ways to the understanding of why people develop EDs.

  16. Mechanisms of epigenetic memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Urso, Agustina; Brickner, Jason H

    2014-06-01

    Although genetics has an essential role in defining the development, morphology, and physiology of an organism, epigenetic mechanisms have an essential role in modulating these properties by regulating gene expression. During development, epigenetic mechanisms establish stable gene expression patterns to ensure proper differentiation. Such mechanisms also allow organisms to adapt to environmental changes and previous experiences can impact the future responsiveness of an organism to a stimulus over long timescales and even over generations. Here, we discuss the concept of epigenetic memory, defined as the stable propagation of a change in gene expression or potential induced by developmental or environmental stimuli. We highlight three distinct paradigms of epigenetic memory that operate on different timescales. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Epigenetics: beyond genes

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Fossey, A

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Gene regulatory processes lead to differential gene expression and are referred to as epigenetic phenomena; these are ubiquitous processes in the biological world. These reversible heritable changes concern DNA and RNA, their interactions...

  18. Preferential Protection of Genetic Fidelity within Open Chromatin by the Mismatch Repair Machinery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Lue; Zhang, Yan; Zhang, Zhuqiang; Zheng, Yong; Du, Lilin; Zhu, Bing

    2016-08-19

    Epigenetic systems are well known for the roles they play in regulating the differential expression of the same genome in different cell types. However, epigenetic systems can also directly impact genomic integrity by protecting genetic sequences. Using an experimental evolutionary approach, we studied rates of mutation in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe strains that lacked genes encoding several epigenetic regulators or mismatch repair components. We report that loss of a functional mismatch repair pathway in S. pombe resulted in the preferential enrichment of mutations in euchromatin, indicating that the mismatch repair machinery preferentially protected genetic fidelity in euchromatin. This preference is probably determined by differences in the accessibility of chromatin at distinct chromatin regions, which is supported by our observations that chromatin accessibility positively correlated with mutation rates in S. pombe or human cancer samples with deficiencies in mismatch repair. Importantly, such positive correlation was not observed in S. pombe strains or human cancer samples with functional mismatch repair machinery. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  19. Is there an epigenetic component underlying the resistance of triple-negative breast cancers to parp inhibitors?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovato, Amanda; Panasci, Lawrence; Witcher, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (Parp) is an enzyme responsible for catalyzing post-translational modifications through the addition of poly(ADP-ribose) chains (known as PARylation). Modification by PARylation modulates numerous cellular processes including transcription, chromatin remodeling, apoptosis, and DNA damage repair. In particular, the role of Parp activation in response to DNA damage has been intensely studied. Tumors bearing mutations of the breast cancer susceptibility genes, Brca1/2, are prone to DNA breakages whose restoration into functional double-strand DNA is Parp dependent. This concept has been exploited therapeutically in Brca mutated breast and ovarian tumors, where acute sensitivity to Parp inhibitors is observed. Based on in vitro and clinical studies it remains unclear to what extent Parp inhibitors can be utilized beyond treating Brca mutated tumors. This review will focus on the often overlooked roles of PARylation in chromatin remodeling, epigenetics, and transcription to explain why some cancers may be unresponsive to Parp inhibition. We predict that understanding the impact of PARylation on gene expression will lead to alternative approaches to manipulate the Parp pathway for therapeutic benefit.

  20. Is there an epigenetic component underlying the resistance of triple-negative breast cancers to PARP inhibitors?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda eLovato

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Poly(ADP-ribosepolymerase (Parp is an enzyme responsible for catalyzing post-translational modifications through the addition of poly(ADP-ribose chains (known as PARylation. Modification by PARylation modulates numerous cellular processes including transcription, chromatin remodeling, apoptosis and DNA damage repair. In particular, the role of Parp activation in response to DNA damage has been intensely studied. Tumors bearing mutations of the breast cancer susceptibility genes, Brca1/2, are prone to DNA breakages whose restoration into functional double-strand DNA is Parp dependent. This concept has been exploited therapeutically in Brca mutated breast and ovarian tumors, where acute sensitivity to Parp inhibitors is observed. Based on in vitro and clinical studies it remains unclear to what extent Parp inhibitors can be utilized beyond treating Brca mutated tumors. This review will focus on the often overlooked roles of PARylation in chromatin remodeling, epigenetics and transcription to explain why some cancers may be unresponsive to Parp inhibition. We predict that understanding the impact of PARylation on gene expression will lead to alternative approaches to manipulate the Parp pathway for therapeutic benefit.

  1. In utero exposure and breast cancer development: an epigenetic perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Jacob; Hodsdon, Wendy

    2014-01-01

    The ubiquitous and detrimental disease of breast cancer requires continual research into new and alternative forms of treatment and prevention. The emerging field of epigenetics is beginning to unfold an array of contemporary approaches to reduce the risk and improve the clinical approach to breast cancer. The information contained in this non-systematic review highlights and expands on the estrogen-based model of breast cancer epigenetics to provide an overview of epigenetic alterations induced by nutrition and environmental exposure. The majority of evidence suggests that various sources of excess estrogen correlate to future breast cancer development. In addition, maternal macro- and micronutrient balance appear to play a role in genomic regulation, and preliminary data suggest that specific superfoods, such as blueberries, have a protective epigenetic effect. Identifying the influence of environmental toxicants, hormonal exposure, maternal nutrition, and maternal disease on fetal epigenetics may have potential for development of new therapeutic approaches for the prevention of breast cancer.

  2. ChIP-re-ChIP: Co-occupancy Analysis by Sequential Chromatin Immunoprecipitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beischlag, Timothy V; Prefontaine, Gratien G; Hankinson, Oliver

    2018-01-01

    Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) exploits the specific interactions between DNA and DNA-associated proteins. It can be used to examine a wide range of experimental parameters. A number of proteins bound at the same genomic location can identify a multi-protein chromatin complex where several proteins work together to regulate gene transcription or chromatin configuration. In many instances, this can be achieved using sequential ChIP; or simply, ChIP-re-ChIP. Whether it is for the examination of specific transcriptional or epigenetic regulators, or for the identification of cistromes, the ability to perform a sequential ChIP adds a higher level of power and definition to these analyses. In this chapter, we describe a simple and reliable method for the sequential ChIP assay.

  3. De novo prediction of human chromosome structures: Epigenetic marking patterns encode genome architecture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Pierro, Michele; Cheng, Ryan R.; Lieberman Aiden, Erez; Wolynes, Peter G.; Onuchic, José N.

    2017-01-01

    Inside the cell nucleus, genomes fold into organized structures that are characteristic of cell type. Here, we show that this chromatin architecture can be predicted de novo using epigenetic data derived from chromatin immunoprecipitation-sequencing (ChIP-Seq). We exploit the idea that chromosomes encode a 1D sequence of chromatin structural types. Interactions between these chromatin types determine the 3D structural ensemble of chromosomes through a process similar to phase separation. First, a neural network is used to infer the relation between the epigenetic marks present at a locus, as assayed by ChIP-Seq, and the genomic compartment in which those loci reside, as measured by DNA-DNA proximity ligation (Hi-C). Next, types inferred from this neural network are used as an input to an energy landscape model for chromatin organization [Minimal Chromatin Model (MiChroM)] to generate an ensemble of 3D chromosome conformations at a resolution of 50 kilobases (kb). After training the model, dubbed Maximum Entropy Genomic Annotation from Biomarkers Associated to Structural Ensembles (MEGABASE), on odd-numbered chromosomes, we predict the sequences of chromatin types and the subsequent 3D conformational ensembles for the even chromosomes. We validate these structural ensembles by using ChIP-Seq tracks alone to predict Hi-C maps, as well as distances measured using 3D fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) experiments. Both sets of experiments support the hypothesis of phase separation being the driving process behind compartmentalization. These findings strongly suggest that epigenetic marking patterns encode sufficient information to determine the global architecture of chromosomes and that de novo structure prediction for whole genomes may be increasingly possible. PMID:29087948

  4. De novo prediction of human chromosome structures: Epigenetic marking patterns encode genome architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Pierro, Michele; Cheng, Ryan R; Lieberman Aiden, Erez; Wolynes, Peter G; Onuchic, José N

    2017-11-14

    Inside the cell nucleus, genomes fold into organized structures that are characteristic of cell type. Here, we show that this chromatin architecture can be predicted de novo using epigenetic data derived from chromatin immunoprecipitation-sequencing (ChIP-Seq). We exploit the idea that chromosomes encode a 1D sequence of chromatin structural types. Interactions between these chromatin types determine the 3D structural ensemble of chromosomes through a process similar to phase separation. First, a neural network is used to infer the relation between the epigenetic marks present at a locus, as assayed by ChIP-Seq, and the genomic compartment in which those loci reside, as measured by DNA-DNA proximity ligation (Hi-C). Next, types inferred from this neural network are used as an input to an energy landscape model for chromatin organization [Minimal Chromatin Model (MiChroM)] to generate an ensemble of 3D chromosome conformations at a resolution of 50 kilobases (kb). After training the model, dubbed Maximum Entropy Genomic Annotation from Biomarkers Associated to Structural Ensembles (MEGABASE), on odd-numbered chromosomes, we predict the sequences of chromatin types and the subsequent 3D conformational ensembles for the even chromosomes. We validate these structural ensembles by using ChIP-Seq tracks alone to predict Hi-C maps, as well as distances measured using 3D fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) experiments. Both sets of experiments support the hypothesis of phase separation being the driving process behind compartmentalization. These findings strongly suggest that epigenetic marking patterns encode sufficient information to determine the global architecture of chromosomes and that de novo structure prediction for whole genomes may be increasingly possible. Copyright © 2017 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.

  5. Pancreatic Cancer, A Mis-interpreter of the Epigenetic Language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iguchi, Eriko; Safgren, Stephanie L; Marks, David L; Olson, Rachel L; Fernandez-Zapico, Martin E

    2016-12-01

    Pancreatic cancer is the third leading cause of cancer mortality in the U.S. with close to 40,000 deaths per year. Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) represents approximately 90 percent of all pancreatic cancer cases and is the most lethal form of the disease. Current therapies for PDAC are ineffective and most patients cannot be treated by surgical resection. Most research efforts have primarily focused on how genetic alterations cause, alter progression, contribute to diagnosis, and influence PDAC management. Over the past two decades, a model has been advanced of PDAC initiation and progression as a multi-step process driven by the acquisition of mutations leading to loss of tumor suppressors and activation of oncogenes. The recognition of the essential roles of these genetic alterations in the development of PDAC has revolutionized our knowledge of this disease. However, none of these findings have turned into effective treatment for this dismal malignancy. In recent years, studies in the areas of chromatin modifications, and non-coding RNAs have uncovered mechanisms for regulating gene expression which occur independently of genetic alterations. Chromatin-based mechanisms are interwoven with microRNA-driven regulation of protein translation to create an integrated epigenetic language, which is grossly dysregulated in PDAC. Thus in PDAC, key tumor suppressors that are well established to play a role in PDAC may be repressed, and oncogenes can be upregulated secondary to epigenetic alterations. Unlike mutations, epigenetic changes are potentially reversible. Given this feature of epigenetic mechanisms, it is conceivable that targeting epigenetic-based events promoting and maintaining PDAC could serve as foundation for the development of new therapeutic and diagnostic approaches for this disease.

  6. The Nuts and Bolts of Transcriptionally Silent Chromatin in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gartenberg, Marc R.; Smith, Jeffrey S.

    2016-01-01

    Transcriptional silencing in Saccharomyces cerevisiae occurs at several genomic sites including the silent mating-type loci, telomeres, and the ribosomal DNA (rDNA) tandem array. Epigenetic silencing at each of these domains is characterized by the absence of nearly all histone modifications, including most prominently the lack of histone H4 lysine 16 acetylation. In all cases, silencing requires Sir2, a highly-conserved NAD+-dependent histone deacetylase. At locations other than the rDNA, silencing also requires additional Sir proteins, Sir1, Sir3, and Sir4 that together form a repressive heterochromatin-like structure termed silent chromatin. The mechanisms of silent chromatin establishment, maintenance, and inheritance have been investigated extensively over the last 25 years, and these studies have revealed numerous paradigms for transcriptional repression, chromatin organization, and epigenetic gene regulation. Studies of Sir2-dependent silencing at the rDNA have also contributed to understanding the mechanisms for maintaining the stability of repetitive DNA and regulating replicative cell aging. The goal of this comprehensive review is to distill a wide array of biochemical, molecular genetic, cell biological, and genomics studies down to the “nuts and bolts” of silent chromatin and the processes that yield transcriptional silencing. PMID:27516616

  7. Dynamic Epigenetic Control of Highly Conserved Noncoding Elements

    KAUST Repository

    Seridi, Loqmane

    2014-10-07

    Background Many noncoding genomic loci have remained constant over long evolutionary periods, suggesting that they are exposed to strong selective pressures. The molecular functions of these elements have been partially elucidated, but the fundamental reason for their extreme conservation is still unknown. Results To gain new insights into the extreme selection of highly conserved noncoding elements (HCNEs), we used a systematic analysis of multi-omic data to study the epigenetic regulation of such elements during the development of Drosophila melanogaster. At the sequence level, HCNEs are GC-rich and have a characteristic oligomeric composition. They have higher levels of stable nucleosome occupancy than their flanking regions, and lower levels of mononucleosomes and H3.3, suggesting that these regions reside in compact chromatin. Furthermore, these regions showed remarkable modulations in histone modification and the expression levels of adjacent genes during development. Although HCNEs are primarily initiated late in replication, about 10% were related to early replication origins. Finally, HCNEs showed strong enrichment within lamina-associated domains. Conclusion HCNEs have distinct and protective sequence properties, undergo dynamic epigenetic regulation, and appear to be associated with the structural components of the chromatin, replication origins, and nuclear matrix. These observations indicate that such elements are likely to have essential cellular functions, and offer insights into their epigenetic properties.

  8. Epigenetics and cancer: implications for drug discovery and safety assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moggs, Jonathan G.; Goodman, Jay I.; Trosko, James E.; Roberts, Ruth A.

    2004-01-01

    It is necessary to determine whether chemicals or drugs have the potential to pose a threat to human health. Research conducted over the last two decades has led to the paradigm that chemicals can cause cancer either by damaging DNA or by altering cellular growth, probably via receptor-mediated changes in gene expression. However, recent evidence suggests that gene expression can be altered markedly via several diverse epigenetic mechanisms that can lead to permanent or reversible changes in cellular behavior. Key molecular events underlying these mechanisms include the alteration of DNA methylation and chromatin, and changes in the function of cell surface molecules. Thus, for example, DNA methyltransferase enzymes together with chromatin-associated proteins such as histone modifying enzymes and remodelling factors can modify the genetic code and contribute to the establishment and maintenance of altered epigenetic states. This is relevant to many types of toxicity including but not limited to cancer. In this paper, we describe the potential for interplay between genetic alteration and epigenetic changes in cell growth regulation and discuss the implications for drug discovery and safety assessment

  9. 3D Chromatin Architecture of Large Plant Genomes Determined by Local A/B Compartments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Pengfei; Tu, Xiaoyu; Chu, Po-Yu; Lü, Peitao; Zhu, Ning; Grierson, Donald; Du, Baijuan; Li, Pinghua; Zhong, Silin

    2017-12-04

    The spatial organization of the genome plays an important role in the regulation of gene expression. However, the core structural features of animal genomes, such as topologically associated domains (TADs) and chromatin loops, are not prominent in the extremely compact Arabidopsis genome. In this study, we examine the chromatin architecture, as well as their DNA methylation, histone modifications, accessible chromatin, and gene expression, of maize, tomato, sorghum, foxtail millet, and rice with genome sizes ranging from 0.4 to 2.4 Gb. We found that these plant genomes can be divided into mammalian-like A/B compartments. At higher resolution, the chromosomes of these plants can be further partitioned to local A/B compartments that reflect their euchromatin, heterochromatin, and polycomb status. Chromatins in all these plants are organized into domains that are not conserved across species. They show similarity to the Drosophila compartment domains, and are clustered into active, polycomb, repressive, and intermediate types based on their transcriptional activities and epigenetic signatures, with domain border overlaps with the local A/B compartment junctions. In the large maize and tomato genomes, we observed extensive chromatin loops. However, unlike the mammalian chromatin loops that are enriched at the TAD border, plant chromatin loops are often formed between gene islands outside the repressive domains and are closely associated with active compartments. Our study indicates that plants have complex and unique 3D chromatin architectures, which require further study to elucidate their biological functions. Copyright © 2017 The Author. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Global Quantitative Modeling of Chromatin Factor Interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Jian; Troyanskaya, Olga G.

    2014-01-01

    Chromatin is the driver of gene regulation, yet understanding the molecular interactions underlying chromatin factor combinatorial patterns (or the “chromatin codes”) remains a fundamental challenge in chromatin biology. Here we developed a global modeling framework that leverages chromatin profiling data to produce a systems-level view of the macromolecular complex of chromatin. Our model ultilizes maximum entropy modeling with regularization-based structure learning to statistically dissect dependencies between chromatin factors and produce an accurate probability distribution of chromatin code. Our unsupervised quantitative model, trained on genome-wide chromatin profiles of 73 histone marks and chromatin proteins from modENCODE, enabled making various data-driven inferences about chromatin profiles and interactions. We provided a highly accurate predictor of chromatin factor pairwise interactions validated by known experimental evidence, and for the first time enabled higher-order interaction prediction. Our predictions can thus help guide future experimental studies. The model can also serve as an inference engine for predicting unknown chromatin profiles — we demonstrated that with this approach we can leverage data from well-characterized cell types to help understand less-studied cell type or conditions. PMID:24675896

  11. 55th Annual Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences Conference on Epigenetics and Genomic Stability. Whistler, British Columbia, Canada, 14–18 March 2012.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Christopher J; Ausió, Juan

    2012-06-01

    The 55th Annual Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences Conference on Epigenetics and Genomic Stability in Whistler, Canada, 14-18 March 2012, brought together 31 speakers from different nationalities. The organizing committee, led by Jim Davie (Chair) at the University of Manitoba (Manitoba, Canada), consisted of several established researchers in the fields of chromatin and epigenetics from across Canada. The meeting was centered on the contribution of epigenetics to gene expression, DNA damage and repair, and the role of environmental factors. A few interesting talks on replication added some insightful information on the controversial issue of histone post-translational modifications as genuine epigenetic marks that are inherited through cell division.

  12. [Epigenetic modifications in human spermatozoon and its potential role in embryonic development].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaoqin, Ge; Zhenghui, Zhao; Xueqian, Zhang; Yuan, Hao

    2014-05-01

    Spermatogenesis is a highly complex process involving mitotic cell division, meiosis and the process of spermiogenesis, during which unique and extensive chromatin and epigenetic modifications are remodeled to bring about specific epigenetic profiles for spermatozoa. Recent studies have shown that epigenetic modifications in mature spermatozoon play an important role in the developing embryo and its alterations in epigenetic patterns may increase the risk for fertilization failure, dysfunction of embryogenesis, preterm birth, low birthweight, congenital anomalies, perinatal mortality, and several other pregnancy-related complications seen at a higher frequency in babies conceived by in vitro fertilization (IVF). In this review, we assess the significance of epigenetic modifications (DNA methylation, histone retention and modification, RNAs and protamine) in mature spermatozoon and its potential role in embryonic development, and elucidate the relationship between altered epigenetic profile and associated diseases, providing basic information for preventing and treating male infertility, evaluating the epigenetic quality of sperm and reducing the risk of epigenetic diseases with babies conceived by assisted reproductive technology (ART).

  13. A Long-Distance Chromatin Affair

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Denker, Annette; de Laat, Wouter

    2015-01-01

    Changes in transcription factor binding sequences result in correlated changes in chromatin composition locally and at sites hundreds of kilobases away. New studies demonstrate that this concordance is mediated via spatial chromatin interactions that constitute regulatory modules of the human

  14. Guarding against Collateral Damage during Chromatin Transactions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Altmeyer, Matthias; Lukas, Jiri

    2013-01-01

    Signal amplifications are vital for chromatin function, yet they also bear the risk of transforming into unrestrained, self-escalating, and potentially harmful responses. Examples of inbuilt limitations are emerging, revealing how chromatin transactions are confined within physiological boundaries....

  15. Interaction between differentially methylated regions partitions the imprinted genes Igf2 and H19 into parent-specific chromatin loops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murrell, Adele; Heeson, Sarah; Reik, Wolf

    2004-08-01

    Imprinted genes are expressed from only one of the parental alleles and are marked epigenetically by DNA methylation and histone modifications. The paternally expressed gene insulin-like growth-factor 2 (Igf2) is separated by approximately 100 kb from the maternally expressed noncoding gene H19 on mouse distal chromosome 7. Differentially methylated regions in Igf2 and H19 contain chromatin boundaries, silencers and activators and regulate the reciprocal expression of the two genes in a methylation-sensitive manner by allowing them exclusive access to a shared set of enhancers. Various chromatin models have been proposed that separate Igf2 and H19 into active and silent domains. Here we used a GAL4 knock-in approach as well as the chromosome conformation capture technique to show that the differentially methylated regions in the imprinted genes Igf2 and H19 interact in mice. These interactions are epigenetically regulated and partition maternal and paternal chromatin into distinct loops. This generates a simple epigenetic switch for Igf2 through which it moves between an active and a silent chromatin domain.

  16. The physics of epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortini, Ruggero; Barbi, Maria; Caré, Bertrand R.; Lavelle, Christophe; Lesne, Annick; Mozziconacci, Julien; Victor, Jean-Marc

    2016-04-01

    In higher organisms, all cells share the same genome, but every cell expresses only a limited and specific set of genes that defines the cell type. During cell division, not only the genome, but also the cell type is inherited by the daughter cells. This intriguing phenomenon is achieved by a variety of processes that have been collectively termed epigenetics: the stable and inheritable changes in gene expression patterns. This article reviews the extremely rich and exquisitely multiscale physical mechanisms that govern the biological processes behind the initiation, spreading, and inheritance of epigenetic states. These include not only the changes in the molecular properties associated with the chemical modifications of DNA and histone proteins, such as methylation and acetylation, but also less conventional changes, typically in the physics that governs the three-dimensional organization of the genome in cell nuclei. Strikingly, to achieve stability and heritability of epigenetic states, cells take advantage of many different physical principles, such as the universal behavior of polymers and copolymers, the general features of dynamical systems, and the electrostatic and mechanical properties related to chemical modifications of DNA and histones. By putting the complex biological literature in this new light, the emerging picture is that a limited set of general physical rules play a key role in initiating, shaping, and transmitting this crucial "epigenetic landscape." This new perspective not only allows one to rationalize the normal cellular functions, but also helps to understand the emergence of pathological states, in which the epigenetic landscape becomes dysfunctional.

  17. Epigenetic Mechanisms of Integrative Medicine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riya R. Kanherkar

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Since time immemorial humans have utilized natural products and therapies for their healing properties. Even now, in the age of genomics and on the cusp of regenerative medicine, the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM approaches represents a popular branch of health care. Furthermore, there is a trend towards a unified medical philosophy referred to as Integrative Medicine (IM that represents the convergence of CAM and conventional medicine. The IM model not only considers the holistic perspective of the physiological components of the individual, but also includes psychological and mind-body aspects. Justification for and validation of such a whole-systems approach is in part dependent upon identification of the functional pathways governing healing, and new data is revealing relationships between therapies and biochemical effects that have long defied explanation. We review this data and propose a unifying theme: IM’s ability to affect healing is due at least in part to epigenetic mechanisms. This hypothesis is based on a mounting body of evidence that demonstrates a correlation between the physical and mental effects of IM and modulation of gene expression and epigenetic state. Emphasis on mapping, deciphering, and optimizing these effects will facilitate therapeutic delivery and create further benefits.

  18. Epigenetic Silencing of DKK3 in Medulloblastoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André Oberthuer

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Medulloblastoma (MB is a malignant pediatric brain tumor arising in the cerebellum consisting of four distinct subgroups: WNT, SHH, Group 3 and Group 4, which exhibit different molecular phenotypes. We studied the expression of Dickkopf (DKK 1–4 family genes, inhibitors of the Wnt signaling cascade, in MB by screening 355 expression profiles derived from four independent datasets. Upregulation of DKK1, DKK2 and DKK4 mRNA was observed in the WNT subgroup, whereas DKK3 was downregulated in 80% MBs across subgroups with respect to the normal cerebellum (p < 0.001. Since copy number aberrations targeting the DKK3 locus (11p15.3 are rare events, we hypothesized that epigenetic factors could play a role in DKK3 regulation. Accordingly, we studied 77 miRNAs predicting to repress DKK3; however, no significant inverse correlation between miRNA/mRNA expression was observed. Moreover, the low methylation levels in the DKK3 promoters (median: 3%, 5% and 5% for promoter 1, 2 and 3, respectively excluded the downregulation of gene expression by methylation. On the other hand, the treatment of MB cells with Trichostatin A (TSA, a potent inhibitor of histone deacetylases (HDAC, was able to restore both DKK3 mRNA and protein. In conclusion, DKK3 downregulation across all MB subgroups may be due to epigenetic mechanisms, in particular, through chromatin condensation.

  19. Diversity among POU transcription factors in chromatin recognition and cell fate reprogramming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malik, Vikas; Zimmer, Dennis; Jauch, Ralf

    2018-05-01

    The POU (Pit-Oct-Unc) protein family is an evolutionary ancient group of transcription factors (TFs) that bind specific DNA sequences to direct gene expression programs. The fundamental importance of POU TFs to orchestrate embryonic development and to direct cellular fate decisions is well established, but the molecular basis for this activity is insufficiently understood. POU TFs possess a bipartite 'two-in-one' DNA binding domain consisting of two independently folding structural units connected by a poorly conserved and flexible linker. Therefore, they represent a paradigmatic example to study the molecular basis for the functional versatility of TFs. Their modular architecture endows POU TFs with the capacity to accommodate alternative composite DNA sequences by adopting different quaternary structures. Moreover, associations with partner proteins crucially influence the selection of their DNA binding sites. The plentitude of DNA binding modes confers the ability to POU TFs to regulate distinct genes in the context of different cellular environments. Likewise, different binding modes of POU proteins to DNA could trigger alternative regulatory responses in the context of different genomic locations of the same cell. Prominent POU TFs such as Oct4, Brn2, Oct6 and Brn4 are not only essential regulators of development but have also been successfully employed to reprogram somatic cells to pluripotency and neural lineages. Here we review biochemical, structural, genomic and cellular reprogramming studies to examine how the ability of POU TFs to select regulatory DNA, alone or with partner factors, is tied to their capacity to epigenetically remodel chromatin and drive specific regulatory programs that give cells their identities.

  20. Transcription Through Chromatin - Dynamic Organization of Genes

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In this article, we discuss the dynamic organization of eukaryotic genes into chromatin. Remodeling of chromatin confers it the ability for dynamic change. Remodeling is essential for transcriptional regulation, the first step of gene expression. Chromatin Structure and Gene Expression. Transcription is the first step of gene ...

  1. Epigenetics in the perioperative period

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lirk, P.; Fiegl, H.; Weber, N. C.; Hollmann, M. W.

    2015-01-01

    The perioperative period is characterized by profound changes in the body's homoeostatic processes. This review seeks to address whether epigenetic mechanisms may influence an individual's reaction to surgery and anaesthesia. Evidence from animal and human studies suggests that epigenetic mechanisms

  2. Epigenetics in Prostate Cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Costantine Albany

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Prostate cancer (PC is the most commonly diagnosed nonskin malignancy and the second most common cause of cancer death among men in the United States. Epigenetics is the study of heritable changes in gene expression caused by mechanisms other than changes in the underlying DNA sequences. Two common epigenetic mechanisms, DNA methylation and histone modification, have demonstrated critical roles in prostate cancer growth and metastasis. DNA hypermethylation of cytosine-guanine (CpG rich sequence islands within gene promoter regions is widespread during neoplastic transformation of prostate cells, suggesting that treatment-induced restoration of a “normal” epigenome could be clinically beneficial. Histone modification leads to altered tumor gene function by changing chromosome structure and the level of gene transcription. The reversibility of epigenetic aberrations and restoration of tumor suppression gene function have made them attractive targets for prostate cancer treatment with modulators that demethylate DNA and inhibit histone deacetylases.

  3. High-Resolution Mapping of Chromatin Conformation in Cardiac Myocytes Reveals Structural Remodeling of the Epigenome in Heart Failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosa-Garrido, Manuel; Chapski, Douglas J; Schmitt, Anthony D; Kimball, Todd H; Karbassi, Elaheh; Monte, Emma; Balderas, Enrique; Pellegrini, Matteo; Shih, Tsai-Ting; Soehalim, Elizabeth; Liem, David; Ping, Peipei; Galjart, Niels J; Ren, Shuxun; Wang, Yibin; Ren, Bing; Vondriska, Thomas M

    2017-10-24

    Cardiovascular disease is associated with epigenomic changes in the heart; however, the endogenous structure of cardiac myocyte chromatin has never been determined. To investigate the mechanisms of epigenomic function in the heart, genome-wide chromatin conformation capture (Hi-C) and DNA sequencing were performed in adult cardiac myocytes following development of pressure overload-induced hypertrophy. Mice with cardiac-specific deletion of CTCF (a ubiquitous chromatin structural protein) were generated to explore the role of this protein in chromatin structure and cardiac phenotype. Transcriptome analyses by RNA-seq were conducted as a functional readout of the epigenomic structural changes. Depletion of CTCF was sufficient to induce heart failure in mice, and human patients with heart failure receiving mechanical unloading via left ventricular assist devices show increased CTCF abundance. Chromatin structural analyses revealed interactions within the cardiac myocyte genome at 5-kb resolution, enabling examination of intra- and interchromosomal events, and providing a resource for future cardiac epigenomic investigations. Pressure overload or CTCF depletion selectively altered boundary strength between topologically associating domains and A/B compartmentalization, measurements of genome accessibility. Heart failure involved decreased stability of chromatin interactions around disease-causing genes. In addition, pressure overload or CTCF depletion remodeled long-range interactions of cardiac enhancers, resulting in a significant decrease in local chromatin interactions around these functional elements. These findings provide a high-resolution chromatin architecture resource for cardiac epigenomic investigations and demonstrate that global structural remodeling of chromatin underpins heart failure. The newly identified principles of endogenous chromatin structure have key implications for epigenetic therapy. © 2017 The Authors.

  4. Epigenetics in the Vascular Endothelium: Looking From a Different Perspective in the Epigenomics Era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Matthew S; Marsden, Philip A

    2015-11-01

    Cardiovascular diseases are commonly thought to be complex, non-Mendelian diseases that are influenced by genetic and environmental factors. A growing body of evidence suggests that epigenetic pathways play a key role in vascular biology and might be involved in defining and transducing cardiovascular disease inheritability. In this review, we argue the importance of epigenetics in vascular biology, especially from the perspective of endothelial cell phenotype. We highlight and discuss the role of epigenetic modifications across the transcriptional unit of protein-coding genes, especially the role of intragenic chromatin modifications, which are underappreciated and not well characterized in the current era of genome-wide studies. Importantly, we describe the practical application of epigenetics in cardiovascular disease therapeutics. © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc.

  5. Epigenetics Meets Radiation Biology as a New Approach in Cancer Treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joo Mi Yi

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Cancer is a disease that results from both genetic and epigenetic changes. In recent decades, a number of people have investigated the disparities in gene expression resulting from variable DNA methylation alteration and chromatin structure modification in response to the environment. Especially, colon cancer is a great model system for investigating the epigenetic mechanism for aberrant gene expression alteration. Ionizing radiation (IR could affect a variety of processes within exposed cells and, in particular, cause changes in gene expression, disruption of cell cycle arrest, and apoptotic cell death. Even though there is growing evidence on the importance of epigenetics and biological processes induced by radiation exposure in various cancer types including colon cancer, specific epigenetic alterations induced by radiation at the molecular level are incompletely defined. This review focuses on discussing possible IR-mediated changes of DNA methylation and histone modification in cancer.

  6. Epigenetic Memory Underlies Cell-Autonomous Heterogeneous Behavior of Hematopoietic Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Vionnie W C; Yusuf, Rushdia Z; Oki, Toshihiko; Wu, Juwell; Saez, Borja; Wang, Xin; Cook, Colleen; Baryawno, Ninib; Ziller, Michael J; Lee, Eunjung; Gu, Hongcang; Meissner, Alexander; Lin, Charles P; Kharchenko, Peter V; Scadden, David T

    2016-11-17

    Stem cells determine homeostasis and repair of many tissues and are increasingly recognized as functionally heterogeneous. To define the extent of-and molecular basis for-heterogeneity, we overlaid functional, transcriptional, and epigenetic attributes of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) at a clonal level using endogenous fluorescent tagging. Endogenous HSC had clone-specific functional attributes over time in vivo. The intra-clonal behaviors were highly stereotypic, conserved under the stress of transplantation, inflammation, and genotoxic injury, and associated with distinctive transcriptional, DNA methylation, and chromatin accessibility patterns. Further, HSC function corresponded to epigenetic configuration but not always to transcriptional state. Therefore, hematopoiesis under homeostatic and stress conditions represents the integrated action of highly heterogeneous clones of HSC with epigenetically scripted behaviors. This high degree of epigenetically driven cell autonomy among HSCs implies that refinement of the concepts of stem cell plasticity and of the stem cell niche is warranted. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Crop epigenetics and the molecular hardware of genotype x environment interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Graham John King

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Crop plants encounter thermal environments which fluctuate on a diurnal and seasonal basis. Future climate resilient cultivars will need to respond to thermal profiles reflecting more variable conditions, and harness plasticity that involves regulation of epigenetic processes and complex genomic regulatory networks. Compartmentalisation within plant cells insulates the genomic central processing unit within the interphase nucleus. This review addresses the properties of the chromatin hardware in which the genome is embedded, focusing on the biophysical and thermodynamic properties of DNA, histones and nucleosomes. It explores the consequences of thermal and ionic variation on the biophysical behaviour of epigenetic marks such as DNA cytosine methylation (5mC, and histone variants such as H2A.Z, and how these contribute to maintenance of chromatin integrity in the nucleus, while enabling specific subsets of genes to be regulated. Information is drawn from theoretical molecular in vitro studies as well as model and crop plants and incorporates recent insights into the role epigenetic processes play in mediating between environmental signals and genomic regulation. A preliminary speculative framework is outlined, based on the evidence of what appears a cohesive set of interactions at molecular, biophysical and electrostatic level between the various components contributing to chromatin conformation and dynamics. It proposes that within plant nuclei, general and localised ionic homeostasis plays an important role in maintaining chromatin conformation, whilst maintaining complex genomic regulation that involve specific patterns of epigenetic marks. More generally, reversible changes in DNA methylation appear to be consistent with the ability of nuclear chromatin to manage variation in external ionic and temperature environment. Whilst tentative, this framework provides scope to develop experimental approaches to understand in greater detail the

  8. Derangement of a factor upstream of RARalpha triggers the repression of a pleiotropic epigenetic network.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesca Corlazzoli

    Full Text Available Chromatin adapts and responds to extrinsic and intrinsic cues. We hypothesize that inheritable aberrant chromatin states in cancer and aging are caused by genetic/environmental factors. In previous studies we demonstrated that either genetic mutations, or loss, of retinoic acid receptor alpha (RARalpha, can impair the integration of the retinoic acid (RA signal at the chromatin of RA-responsive genes downstream of RARalpha, and can lead to aberrant repressive chromatin states marked by epigenetic modifications. In this study we tested whether the mere interference with the availability of RA signal at RARalpha, in cells with an otherwise functional RARalpha, can also induce epigenetic repression at RA-responsive genes downstream of RARalpha.To hamper the availability of RA at RARalpha in untransformed human mammary epithelial cells, we targeted the cellular RA-binding protein 2 (CRABP2, which transports RA from the cytoplasm onto the nuclear RARs. Stable ectopic expression of a CRABP2 mutant unable to enter the nucleus, as well as stable knock down of endogenous CRABP2, led to the coordinated transcriptional repression of a few RA-responsive genes downstream of RARalpha. The chromatin at these genes acquired an exacerbated repressed state, or state "of no return". This aberrant state is unresponsive to RA, and therefore differs from the physiologically repressed, yet "poised" state, which is responsive to RA. Consistent with development of homozygosis for epigenetically repressed loci, a significant proportion of cells with a defective CRABP2-mediated RA transport developed heritable phenotypes indicative of loss of function.Derangement/lack of a critical factor necessary for RARalpha function induces epigenetic repression of a RA-regulated gene network downstream of RARalpha, with major pleiotropic biological outcomes.

  9. Effects of low dose radiation and epigenetic regulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jiao Benzheng; Ma Shumei; Yi Heqing; Kong Dejuan; Zhao Guangtong; Gao Lin; Liu Xiaodong

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: To conclude the relationship between epigenetics regulation and radiation responses, especially in low-dose area. Methods: The literature was examined for papers related to the topics of DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling and non-coding RNA modulation in low-dose radiation responses. Results: DNA methylation and radiation can regulate reciprocally, especially in low-dose radiation responses. The relationship between histone methylation and radiation mainly exists in the high-dose radiation area; histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors show a promising application to enhance radiation sensitivity, no matter whether in low-dose or high-dose areas; the connection between γ-H2AX and LDR has been remained unknown, although γ-H2AX has been shown no radiation sensitivities with 1-15 Gy irradiation; histone ubiquitination play an important role in DNA damage repair mechanism. Moreover, chromatin remodeling has an integral role in DSB repair and the chromatin response, in general, may be precede DNA end resection. Finally, the effect of radiation on miRNA expression seems to vary according to cell type, radiation dose, and post-irradiation time point. Conclusion: Although the advance of epigenetic regulation on radiation responses, which we are managing to elucidate in this review, has been concluded, there are many questions and blind blots deserved to investigated, especially in low-dose radiation area. However, as progress on epigenetics, we believe that many new elements will be identified in the low-dose radiation responses which may put new sights into the mechanisms of radiation responses and radiotherapy. (authors)

  10. Epigenetics in plant tissue culture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smulders, M.J.M.; Klerk, de G.J.M.

    2011-01-01

    Plants produced vegetatively in tissue culture may differ from the plants from which they have been derived. Two major classes of off-types occur: genetic ones and epigenetic ones. This review is about epigenetic aberrations. We discuss recent studies that have uncovered epigenetic modifications at

  11. Epigenetic inheritance, prions and evolution

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Such transgenerational epigenetic inheritance (TEI) raises obvious questions about a possible evolutionary role for epigenetic 'Lamarckian' mechanisms in evolution, particularly when epigenetic modifications are induced by environmental cues. In this review I attempt a brief overview of the periodically reviewed and ...

  12. Transcriptional reprogramming of gene expression in bovine somatic cell chromatin transfer embryos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Page Grier P

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Successful reprogramming of a somatic genome to produce a healthy clone by somatic cells nuclear transfer (SCNT is a rare event and the mechanisms involved in this process are poorly defined. When serial or successive rounds of cloning are performed, blastocyst and full term development rates decline even further with the increasing rounds of cloning. Identifying the "cumulative errors" could reveal the epigenetic reprogramming blocks in animal cloning. Results Bovine clones from up to four generations of successive cloning were produced by chromatin transfer (CT. Using Affymetrix bovine microarrays we determined that the transcriptomes of blastocysts derived from the first and the fourth rounds of cloning (CT1 and CT4 respectively have undergone an extensive reprogramming and were more similar to blastocysts derived from in vitro fertilization (IVF than to the donor cells used for the first and the fourth rounds of chromatin transfer (DC1 and DC4 respectively. However a set of transcripts in the cloned embryos showed a misregulated pattern when compared to IVF embryos. Among the genes consistently upregulated in both CT groups compared to the IVF embryos were genes involved in regulation of cytoskeleton and cell shape. Among the genes consistently upregulated in IVF embryos compared to both CT groups were genes involved in chromatin remodelling and stress coping. Conclusion The present study provides a data set that could contribute in our understanding of epigenetic errors in somatic cell chromatin transfer. Identifying "cumulative errors" after serial cloning could reveal some of the epigenetic reprogramming blocks shedding light on the reprogramming process, important for both basic and applied research.

  13. Genetic modifiers of chromatin acetylation antagonize the reprogramming of epi-polymorphisms.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne-Laure Abraham

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Natural populations are known to differ not only in DNA but also in their chromatin-associated epigenetic marks. When such inter-individual epigenomic differences (or "epi-polymorphisms" are observed, their stability is usually not known: they may or may not be reprogrammed over time or upon environmental changes. In addition, their origin may be purely epigenetic, or they may result from regulatory variation encoded in the DNA. Studying epi-polymorphisms requires, therefore, an assessment of their nature and stability. Here we estimate the stability of yeast epi-polymorphisms of chromatin acetylation, and we provide a genome-by-epigenome map of their genetic control. A transient epi-drug treatment was able to reprogram acetylation variation at more than one thousand nucleosomes, whereas a similar amount of variation persisted, distinguishing "labile" from "persistent" epi-polymorphisms. Hundreds of genetic loci underlied acetylation variation at 2,418 nucleosomes either locally (in cis or distantly (in trans, and this genetic control overlapped only partially with the genetic control of gene expression. Trans-acting regulators were not necessarily associated with genes coding for chromatin modifying enzymes. Strikingly, "labile" and "persistent" epi-polymorphisms were associated with poor and strong genetic control, respectively, showing that genetic modifiers contribute to persistence. These results estimate the amount of natural epigenomic variation that can be lost after transient environmental exposures, and they reveal the complex genetic architecture of the DNA-encoded determinism of chromatin epi-polymorphisms. Our observations provide a basis for the development of population epigenetics.

  14. Mass Spectrometry-Based Proteomics for the Analysis of Chromatin Structure and Dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monica Soldi

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Chromatin is a highly structured nucleoprotein complex made of histone proteins and DNA that controls nearly all DNA-dependent processes. Chromatin plasticity is regulated by different associated proteins, post-translational modifications on histones (hPTMs and DNA methylation, which act in a concerted manner to enforce a specific “chromatin landscape”, with a regulatory effect on gene expression. Mass Spectrometry (MS has emerged as a powerful analytical strategy to detect histone PTMs, revealing interplays between neighbouring PTMs and enabling screens for their readers in a comprehensive and quantitative fashion. Here we provide an overview of the recent achievements of state-of-the-art mass spectrometry-based proteomics for the detailed qualitative and quantitative characterization of histone post-translational modifications, histone variants, and global interactomes at specific chromatin regions. This synopsis emphasizes how the advances in high resolution MS, from “Bottom Up” to “Top Down” analysis, together with the uptake of quantitative proteomics methods by chromatin biologists, have made MS a well-established method in the epigenetics field, enabling the acquisition of original information, highly complementary to that offered by more conventional, antibody-based, assays.

  15. Variability in Chromatin Architecture and Associated DNA Repair at Genomic Positions Containing Somatic Mutations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Byungho; Mun, Jihyeob; Kim, Yong Sung; Kim, Seon-Young

    2017-06-01

    Dynamic chromatin structures result in differential chemical reactivity to mutational processes throughout the genome. To identify chromatin features responsible for mutagenesis, we compared chromatin architecture around single-nucleotide variants (SNV), insertion/deletions (indels), and their context-matched, nonmutated positions. We found epigenetic differences between genomic regions containing missense SNVs and those containing frameshift indels across multiple cancer types. Levels of active histone marks were higher around frameshift indels than around missense SNV, whereas repressive histone marks exhibited the reverse trend. Accumulation of repressive histone marks and nucleosomes distinguished mutated positions (both SNV and indels) from the context-matched, nonmutated positions, whereas active marks were associated with substitution- and cancer type-specific mutagenesis. We also explained mutagenesis based on genome maintenance mechanisms, including nucleotide excision repair (NER), mismatch repair (MMR), and DNA polymerase epsilon (POLE). Regional NER variation correlated strongly with chromatin features; NER machineries exhibited shifted or depleted binding around SNV, resulting in decreased NER at mutation positions, especially at sites of recurrent mutations. MMR-deficient tumors selectively acquired SNV in regions with high active histone marks, especially H3K36me3, whereas POLE-deficient tumors selectively acquired indels and SNV in regions with low active histone marks. These findings demonstrate the importance of fine-scaled chromatin structures and associated DNA repair mechanisms in mutagenesis. Cancer Res; 77(11); 2822-33. ©2017 AACR . ©2017 American Association for Cancer Research.

  16. Myc Regulates Chromatin Decompaction and Nuclear Architecture during B Cell Activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kieffer-Kwon, Kyong-Rim; Nimura, Keisuke; Rao, Suhas S P; Xu, Jianliang; Jung, Seolkyoung; Pekowska, Aleksandra; Dose, Marei; Stevens, Evan; Mathe, Ewy; Dong, Peng; Huang, Su-Chen; Ricci, Maria Aurelia; Baranello, Laura; Zheng, Ying; Tomassoni Ardori, Francesco; Resch, Wolfgang; Stavreva, Diana; Nelson, Steevenson; McAndrew, Michael; Casellas, Adriel; Finn, Elizabeth; Gregory, Charles; St Hilaire, Brian Glenn; Johnson, Steven M; Dubois, Wendy; Cosma, Maria Pia; Batchelor, Eric; Levens, David; Phair, Robert D; Misteli, Tom; Tessarollo, Lino; Hager, Gordon; Lakadamyali, Melike; Liu, Zhe; Floer, Monique; Shroff, Hari; Aiden, Erez Lieberman; Casellas, Rafael

    2017-08-17

    50 years ago, Vincent Allfrey and colleagues discovered that lymphocyte activation triggers massive acetylation of chromatin. However, the molecular mechanisms driving epigenetic accessibility are still unknown. We here show that stimulated lymphocytes decondense chromatin by three differentially regulated steps. First, chromatin is repositioned away from the nuclear periphery in response to global acetylation. Second, histone nanodomain clusters decompact into mononucleosome fibers through a mechanism that requires Myc and continual energy input. Single-molecule imaging shows that this step lowers transcription factor residence time and non-specific collisions during sampling for DNA targets. Third, chromatin interactions shift from long range to predominantly short range, and CTCF-mediated loops and contact domains double in numbers. This architectural change facilitates cognate promoter-enhancer contacts and also requires Myc and continual ATP production. Our results thus define the nature and transcriptional impact of chromatin decondensation and reveal an unexpected role for Myc in the establishment of nuclear topology in mammalian cells. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  17. Chromatin plasticity as a differentiation index during muscle differentiation of C2C12 myoblasts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watanabe, Tomonobu M.; Higuchi, Sayaka; Kawauchi, Keiko; Tsukasaki, Yoshikazu; Ichimura, Taro; Fujita, Hideaki

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► Change in the epigenetic landscape during myogenesis was optically investigated. ► Mobility of nuclear proteins was used to state the epigenetic status of the cell. ► Mobility of nuclear proteins decreased as myogenesis progressed in C2C12. ► Differentiation state diagram was developed using parameters obtained. -- Abstract: Skeletal muscle undergoes complicated differentiation steps that include cell-cycle arrest, cell fusion, and maturation, which are controlled through sequential expression of transcription factors. During muscle differentiation, remodeling of the epigenetic landscape is also known to take place on a large scale, determining cell fate. In an attempt to determine the extent of epigenetic remodeling during muscle differentiation, we characterized the plasticity of the chromatin structure using C2C12 myoblasts. Differentiation of C2C12 cells was induced by lowering the serum concentration after they had reached full confluence, resulting in the formation of multi-nucleated myotubes. Upon induction of differentiation, the nucleus size decreased whereas the aspect ratio increased, indicating the presence of force on the nucleus during differentiation. Movement of the nucleus was also suppressed when differentiation was induced, indicating that the plasticity of chromatin changed upon differentiation. To evaluate the histone dynamics during differentiation, FRAP experiment was performed, which showed an increase in the immobile fraction of histone proteins when differentiation was induced. To further evaluate the change in the histone dynamics during differentiation, FCS was performed, which showed a decrease in histone mobility on differentiation. We here show that the plasticity of chromatin decreases upon differentiation, which takes place in a stepwise manner, and that it can be used as an index for the differentiation stage during myogenesis using the state diagram developed with the parameters obtained in this study.

  18. Challenges ahead for mass spectrometry and proteomics applications in epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kessler, Benedikt M

    2010-02-01

    Inheritance of biological information to future generations depends on the replication of DNA and the Mendelian principle of distribution of genes. In addition, external and environmental factors can influence traits that can be propagated to offspring, but the molecular details of this are only beginning to be understood. The discoveries of DNA methylation and post-translational modifications on chromatin and histones provided entry points for regulating gene expression, an area now defined as epigenetics and epigenomics. Mass spectrometry turned out to be instrumental in uncovering molecular details involved in these processes. The central role of histone post-translational modifications in epigenetics related biological processes has revitalized mass spectrometry based investigations. In this special report, current approaches and future challenges that lay ahead due to the enormous complexity are discussed.

  19. Metabolic and Epigenetic Coordination of T Cell and Macrophage Immunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phan, Anthony T; Goldrath, Ananda W; Glass, Christopher K

    2017-05-16

    Recognition of pathogens by innate and adaptive immune cells instructs rapid alterations of cellular processes to promote effective resolution of infection. To accommodate increased bioenergetic and biosynthetic demands, metabolic pathways are harnessed to maximize proliferation and effector molecule production. In parallel, activation initiates context-specific gene-expression programs that drive effector functions and cell fates that correlate with changes in epigenetic landscapes. Many chromatin- and DNA-modifying enzymes make use of substrates and cofactors that are intermediates of metabolic pathways, providing potential cross talk between metabolism and epigenetic regulation of gene expression. In this review, we discuss recent studies of T cells and macrophages supporting a role for metabolic activity in integrating environmental signals with activation-induced gene-expression programs through modulation of the epigenome and speculate as to how this may influence context-specific macrophage and T cell responses to infection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Understanding and Targeting Epigenetic Alterations in Acquired Bone Marrow Failure

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-01

    epigenetic contribution of Asxl1 and Ezh2 loss to bone marrow failure through Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) of histone H3 lysine 27 trimethyl...Papaemmanuil et al., 2013; Yoshida et al., 2011). These mutations occur most commonly in SF3B1 (Splicing Factor 3b Subunit 1), SRSF2 (Serine/ arginine -Rich...EZH2 protein levels as well as lower global levels of histone H3 lysine 27 trimethyla- tion (H3K27me3, a methylation mark placed by EZH2) in SRSF2

  1. Bromodomain proteins: repairing DNA damage within chromatin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiu, Li-Ya; Gong, Fade; Miller, Kyle M

    2017-10-05

    Genome surveillance and repair, termed the DNA damage response (DDR), functions within chromatin. Chromatin-based DDR mechanisms sustain genome and epigenome integrity, defects that can disrupt cellular homeostasis and contribute to human diseases. An important chromatin DDR pathway is acetylation signalling which is controlled by histone acetyltransferase (HAT) and histone deacetylase (HDAC) enzymes, which regulate acetylated lysines within proteins. Acetylated proteins, including histones, can modulate chromatin structure and provide molecular signals that are bound by acetyl-lysine binders, including bromodomain (BRD) proteins. Acetylation signalling regulates several DDR pathways, as exemplified by the preponderance of HATs, HDACs and BRD proteins that localize at DNA breaks to modify chromatin for lesion repair. Here, we explore the involvement of acetylation signalling in the DDR, focusing on the involvement of BRD proteins in promoting chromatin remodelling to repair DNA double-strand breaks. BRD proteins have widespread DDR functions including chromatin remodelling, chromatin modification and transcriptional regulation. We discuss mechanistically how BRD proteins read acetylation signals within chromatin to trigger DDR and chromatin activities to facilitate genome-epigenome maintenance. Thus, DDR pathways involving BRD proteins represent key participants in pathways that preserve genome-epigenome integrity to safeguard normal genome and cellular functions.This article is part of the themed issue 'Chromatin modifiers and remodellers in DNA repair and signalling'. © 2017 The Author(s).

  2. Evolution, epigenetics and cooperation

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Explanations for biological evolution in terms of changes in gene frequencies refer to outcomes rather than process. Integrating epigenetic studies with older evolutionary theories has drawn attention to the ways in which evolution occurs. Adaptation at the level of the gene is givingway to adaptation at the level of the ...

  3. The epigenetics of obesity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maternal nutrition at the time of conception and during pregnancy is considered a factor for individual differences in having obesity. The mechanisms underlying this association are likely partially epigenetic in nature, but pinning down the exact nature, location, and timing of these changes remain...

  4. Epigenetics and Colorectal Cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lao, Victoria Valinluck; Grady, William M.

    2012-01-01

    Colorectal cancer is a leading cause of cancer deaths in the world. It results from an accumulation of genetic and epigenetic changes in colon epithelial cells that transforms them into adenocarcinomas. There have been major advances in our understanding of cancer epigenetics over the last decade, particularly regarding aberrant DNA methylation. Assessment of the colon cancer epigenome has revealed that virtually all colorectal cancers have aberrantly methylated genes and the average colorectal cancer methylome has hundreds to thousands of abnormally methylated genes. As with gene mutations in the cancer genome, a subset of these methylated genes, called driver genes, is presumed to play a functional role in colorectal cancer. The assessment of methylated genes in colorectal cancers has also revealed a unique molecular subgroup of colorectal cancers called CpG Island Methylator Phenotype (CIMP) cancers; these tumors have a particularly high frequency of methylated genes. The advances in our understanding of aberrant methylation in colorectal cancer has led to epigenetic alterations being developed as clinical biomarkers for diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic applications. Progress in the assessment of epigenetic alterations in colorectal cancer and their clinical applications has shown that these alterations will be commonly used in the near future as molecular markers to direct the prevention and treatment of colorectal cancer. PMID:22009203

  5. Evolution, epigenetics and cooperation

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2016-08-26

    Aug 26, 2016 ... Keywords. Cooperation; epigenetics; evolution; levels of selection ... The domain part of the email address of all email addresses used by the office of Indian Academy of Sciences, including those of the staff, the journals, various programmes, and Current Science, has changed from 'ias.ernet.in' (or ...

  6. Epigenetic changes in myelofibrosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Helene Myrtue; Andersen, Christen Lykkegaard; Westman, Maj

    2017-01-01

    , in 'inflammatory disease' in MF mononuclear cells, and in 'immunological diseases' in MF granulocytes. Only few differentially methylated CpG sites were common among the three cell populations. Mutations in the epigenetic regulators ASXL1 (47%) and TET2 (20%) were not associated with a specific DNA methylation...

  7. De Novo Mutations in CHD4, an ATP-Dependent Chromatin Remodeler Gene, Cause an Intellectual Disability Syndrome with Distinctive Dysmorphisms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weiss, Karin; Terhal, Paulien A; Cohen, Lior; Bruccoleri, Michael; Irving, Melita; Martinez, Ariel F; Rosenfeld, Jill A; Machol, Keren; Yang, Yaping; Liu, Pengfei; Walkiewicz, Magdalena; Beuten, Joke; Gomez-Ospina, Natalia; Haude, Katrina; Fong, Chin-To; Enns, Gregory M; Bernstein, Jonathan A; Fan, Judith; Gotway, Garrett; Ghorbani, Mohammad; van Gassen, Koen; Monroe, Glen R; van Haaften, Gijs; Basel-Vanagaite, Lina; Yang, Xiang-Jiao; Campeau, Philippe M; Muenke, Maximilian

    2016-01-01

    Chromodomain helicase DNA-binding protein 4 (CHD4) is an ATP-dependent chromatin remodeler involved in epigenetic regulation of gene transcription, DNA repair, and cell cycle progression. Also known as Mi2β, CHD4 is an integral subunit of a well-characterized histone deacetylase complex. Here we

  8. Fractal dimension of chromatin is an independent prognostic factor for survival in melanoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Landman Gilles

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Prognostic factors in malignant melanoma are currently based on clinical data and morphologic examination. Other prognostic features, however, which are not yet used in daily practice, might add important information and thus improve prognosis, treatment, and survival. Therefore a search for new markers is desirable. Previous studies have demonstrated that fractal characteristics of nuclear chromatin are of prognostic importance in neoplasias. We have therefore investigated whether the fractal dimension of nuclear chromatin measured in routine histological preparations of malignant melanomas could be a prognostic factor for survival. Methods We examined 71 primary superficial spreading cutaneous melanoma specimens (thickness ≥ 1 mm from patients with a minimum follow up of 5 years. Nuclear area, form factor and fractal dimension of chromatin texture were obtained from digitalized images of hematoxylin-eosin stained tissue micro array sections. Clark's level, tumor thickness and mitotic rate were also determined. Results The median follow-up was 104 months. Tumor thickness, Clark's level, mitotic rate, nuclear area and fractal dimension were significant risk factors in univariate Cox regressions. In the multivariate Cox regression, stratified for the presence or absence of metastases at diagnosis, only the Clark level and fractal dimension of the nuclear chromatin were included as independent prognostic factors in the final regression model. Conclusion In general, a more aggressive behaviour is usually found in genetically unstable neoplasias with a higher number of genetic or epigenetic changes, which on the other hand, provoke a more complex chromatin rearrangement. The increased nuclear fractal dimension found in the more aggressive melanomas is the mathematical equivalent of a higher complexity of the chromatin architecture. So, there is strong evidence that the fractal dimension of the nuclear chromatin texture is a new

  9. NucTools: analysis of chromatin feature occupancy profiles from high-throughput sequencing data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vainshtein, Yevhen; Rippe, Karsten; Teif, Vladimir B

    2017-02-14

    Biomedical applications of high-throughput sequencing methods generate a vast amount of data in which numerous chromatin features are mapped along the genome. The results are frequently analysed by creating binary data sets that link the presence/absence of a given feature to specific genomic loci. However, the nucleosome occupancy or chromatin accessibility landscape is essentially continuous. It is currently a challenge in the field to cope with continuous distributions of deep sequencing chromatin readouts and to integrate the different types of discrete chromatin features to reveal linkages between them. Here we introduce the NucTools suite of Perl scripts as well as MATLAB- and R-based visualization programs for a nucleosome-centred downstream analysis of deep sequencing data. NucTools accounts for the continuous distribution of nucleosome occupancy. It allows calculations of nucleosome occupancy profiles averaged over several replicates, comparisons of nucleosome occupancy landscapes between different experimental conditions, and the estimation of the changes of integral chromatin properties such as the nucleosome repeat length. Furthermore, NucTools facilitates the annotation of nucleosome occupancy with other chromatin features like binding of transcription factors or architectural proteins, and epigenetic marks like histone modifications or DNA methylation. The applications of NucTools are demonstrated for the comparison of several datasets for nucleosome occupancy in mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs). The typical workflows of data processing and integrative analysis with NucTools reveal information on the interplay of nucleosome positioning with other features such as for example binding of a transcription factor CTCF, regions with stable and unstable nucleosomes, and domains of large organized chromatin K9me2 modifications (LOCKs). As potential limitations and problems we discuss how inter-replicate variability of

  10. Open chromatin in plant genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Wenli; Zhang, Tao; Wu, Yufeng; Jiang, Jiming

    2014-01-01

    Sensitivity to DNase I digestion is an indicator of the accessibility and configuration of chromatin in eukaryotic genomes. Open chromatin exhibits high sensitivity to DNase I cleavage. DNase I hypersensitive sites (DHSs) in eukaryotic genomes can be identified through DNase I treatment followed by sequencing (DNase-seq). DHSs are most frequently associated with various cis-regulatory DNA elements, including promoters, enhancers, and silencers in both animal and plant genomes. Genome-wide identification of DHSs provides an efficient method to interpret previously un-annotated regulatory DNA sequences. In this review, we provide an overview of the historical perspective of DHS research in eukaryotes. We summarize the main achievements of DHS research in model animal species and review the recent progress of DHS research in plants. We finally discuss possible future directions of using DHS as a tool in plant genomics research. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  11. Nuclear phosphoinositide regulation of chromatin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamann, Bree L; Blind, Raymond D

    2018-01-01

    Phospholipid signaling has clear connections to a wide array of cellular processes, particularly in gene expression and in controlling the chromatin biology of cells. However, most of the work elucidating how phospholipid signaling pathways contribute to cellular physiology have studied cytoplasmic membranes, while relatively little attention has been paid to the role of phospholipid signaling in the nucleus. Recent work from several labs has shown that nuclear phospholipid signaling can have important roles that are specific to this cellular compartment. This review focuses on the nuclear phospholipid functions and the activities of phospholipid signaling enzymes that regulate metazoan chromatin and gene expression. In particular, we highlight the roles that nuclear phosphoinositides play in several nuclear-driven physiological processes, such as differentiation, proliferation, and gene expression. Taken together, the recent discovery of several specifically nuclear phospholipid functions could have dramatic impact on our understanding of the fundamental mechanisms that enable tight control of cellular physiology. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Epigenetic regulation of hepatocellular carcinoma in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Yuan; Wong, Vincent Wai-Sun; Chan, Henry Lik-Yuen; Cheng, Alfred Sze-Lok

    2013-12-01

    Emerging evidence that epigenetics converts alterations in nutrient and metabolism into heritable pattern of gene expression has profound implications in understanding human physiology and diseases. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the hepatic manifestation of metabolic syndrome including obesity and diabetes which elevate the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) especially in male. This review focuses on the molecular connections between metabolic dysfunction and aberrant epigenetic alterations in the development of HCC in NAFLD. The metabolites derived from excessive insulin, glucose and lipid may perturb epigenetic gene regulation through DNA methylation, histone modifications, and RNA interference, leading to activation of pro-inflammatory signaling and deregulation of metabolic pathways. The interplay and crosstalk of chromatin-modifying enzymes, microRNAs, signaling pathways and the downstream transcription factors result in epigenomic reprogramming that drives hepatocellular transformation. The interactions between sex hormone pathways and the epigenetic machineries that influence chromatin states in NAFLD provide potential molecular mechanisms of gender disparity in HCC. A deeper understanding of these connections and comprehensive molecular catalog of hepatocarcinogenesis may shed light in the identification of druggable epigenetic targets for the prevention and treatment of HCC in obese or diabetic patients. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Krebs cycle intermediates regulate DNA and histone methylation: epigenetic impact on the aging process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salminen, Antero; Kauppinen, Anu; Hiltunen, Mikko; Kaarniranta, Kai

    2014-07-01

    Many aging theories have proposed that mitochondria and energy metabolism have a major role in the aging process. There are recent studies indicating that Krebs cycle intermediates can shape the epigenetic landscape of chromatin by regulating DNA and histone methylation. A growing evidence indicates that epigenetics plays an important role in the regulation of healthspan but also is involved in the aging process. 2-Oxoglutarate (α-ketoglutarate) is a key metabolite in the Krebs cycle but it is also an obligatory substrate for 2-oxoglutarate-dependent dioxygenases (2-OGDO). The 2-OGDO enzyme family includes the major enzymes of DNA and histone demethylation, i.e. Ten-Eleven Translocation (TETs) and Jumonji C domain containing (JmjC) demethylases. In addition, 2-OGDO members can regulate collagen synthesis and hypoxic responses in a non-epigenetical manner. Interestingly, succinate and fumarate, also Krebs cycle intermediates, are potent inhibitors of 2-OGDO enzymes, i.e. the balance of Krebs cycle reactions can affect the level of DNA and histone methylation and thus control gene expression. We will review the epigenetic mechanisms through which Krebs cycle intermediates control the DNA and histone methylation. We propose that age-related disturbances in the Krebs cycle function induce stochastic epigenetic changes in chromatin structures which in turn promote the aging process. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Epigenetic research in multiple sclerosis: progress, challenges, and opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheleznyakova, Galina Y; Piket, Eliane; Marabita, Francesco; Pahlevan Kakhki, Majid; Ewing, Ewoud; Ruhrmann, Sabrina; Needhamsen, Maria; Jagodic, Maja; Kular, Lara

    2017-09-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory and demyelinating disease of the central nervous system. MS likely results from a complex interplay between predisposing causal gene variants (the strongest influence coming from HLA class II locus) and environmental risk factors such as smoking, infectious mononucleosis, and lack of sun exposure/vitamin D. However, little is known about the mechanisms underlying MS development and progression. Moreover, the clinical heterogeneity and variable response to treatment represent additional challenges to a comprehensive understanding and efficient treatment of disease. Epigenetic processes, such as DNA methylation and histone posttranslational modifications, integrate influences from the genes and the environment to regulate gene expression accordingly. Studying epigenetic modifications, which are stable and reversible, may provide an alternative approach to better understand and manage disease. We here aim to review findings from epigenetic studies in MS and further discuss the challenges and clinical opportunities arising from epigenetic research, many of which apply to other diseases with similar complex etiology. A growing body of evidence supports a role of epigenetic processes in the mechanisms underlying immune pathogenesis and nervous system dysfunction in MS. However, disparities between studies shed light on the need to consider possible confounders and methodological limitations for a better interpretation of the data. Nevertheless, translational use of epigenetics might offer new opportunities in epigenetic-based diagnostics and therapeutic tools for a personalized care of MS patients. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  15. Epigenetic treatments for cognitive impairments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, Jeremy J; Sweatt, J David

    2012-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms integrate signals from diverse intracellular transduction cascades and in turn regulate genetic readout. Accumulating evidence has revealed that these mechanisms are critical components of ongoing physiology and function in the adult nervous system, and are essential for many cognitive processes, including learning and memory. Moreover, a number of psychiatric disorders and syndromes that involve cognitive impairments are associated with altered epigenetic function. In this review, we will examine how epigenetic mechanisms contribute to cognition, consider how changes in these mechanisms may lead to cognitive impairments in a range of disorders and discuss the potential utility of therapeutic treatments that target epigenetic machinery. Finally, we will comment on a number of caveats associated with interpreting epigenetic changes and using epigenetic treatments, and suggest future directions for research in this area that will expand our understanding of the epigenetic changes underlying cognitive disorders.

  16. The Influence of Interspecies Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer on Epigenetic Enzymes Transcription in Early Embryos

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Morovic, Martin; Murin, Matej; Strejcek, Frantisek

    2016-01-01

    One of the main reason for the incorrect development of embryos derived from somatic cell nuclear transfer is caused by insufficient demethylation of injected somatic chromatin to a state comparable with an early embryonic nucleus. It is already known that the epigenetic enzymes transcription....... In spite of the detection of ooplasmic DNA methyltransferases, the somatic genes for DNMT1 and DNMT3a enzymes were not expressed and the development of intergeneric embryos stopped at the 4-cell stage. Our results indicate that the epigenetic reprogramming during early mammalian development is strongly...

  17. Don’t worry; be informed about the epigenetics of anxiety

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nieto, Steven J.; Patriquin, Michelle A.; Nielsen, David A.; Kosten, Therese A.

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic processes regulate gene expression independent of the DNA sequence and are increasingly being investigated as contributors to the development of behavioral disorders. Environmental insults, such as stress, diet, or toxin exposure, can affect epigenetic mechanisms, including chromatin remodeling, DNA methylation, and non-coding RNAs that, in turn, alter the organism’s phenotype. In this review, we examine the literature, derived at both the preclinical (animal) and clinical (human) levels, on epigenetic alterations associated with anxiety disorders. Using animal models of anxiety, researchers have identified epigenetic changes in several limbic and cortical brain regions known to be involved in stress and emotion responses. Environmental manipulations have been imposed prior to conception, during prenatal or early postnatal periods, and at juvenile and adult ages. Time of perturbation differentially affects the epigenome and many changes are brain region-specific. Although some sex-dependent effects are reported in animal studies, more research employing both sexes is needed particularly given that females exhibit a disproportionate number of anxiety disorders. The human literature is in its infancy but does reveal some epigenetic associations with anxiety behaviors and disorders. In particular, effects in monoaminergic systems are seen in line with evidence from etiological and treatment research. Further, there is evidence that epigenetic changes may be inherited to affect subsequent generations. We speculate on how epigenetic processes may interact with genetic contributions to inform prevention and treatment strategies for those who are at risk for or have anxiety disorders. PMID:27189589

  18. dbEM: A database of epigenetic modifiers curated from cancerous and normal genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh Nanda, Jagpreet; Kumar, Rahul; Raghava, Gajendra P S

    2016-01-18

    We have developed a database called dbEM (database of Epigenetic Modifiers) to maintain the genomic information of about 167 epigenetic modifiers/proteins, which are considered as potential cancer targets. In dbEM, modifiers are classified on functional basis and comprise of 48 histone methyl transferases, 33 chromatin remodelers and 31 histone demethylases. dbEM maintains the genomic information like mutations, copy number variation and gene expression in thousands of tumor samples, cancer cell lines and healthy samples. This information is obtained from public resources viz. COSMIC, CCLE and 1000-genome project. Gene essentiality data retrieved from COLT database further highlights the importance of various epigenetic proteins for cancer survival. We have also reported the sequence profiles, tertiary structures and post-translational modifications of these epigenetic proteins in cancer. It also contains information of 54 drug molecules against different epigenetic proteins. A wide range of tools have been integrated in dbEM e.g. Search, BLAST, Alignment and Profile based prediction. In our analysis, we found that epigenetic proteins DNMT3A, HDAC2, KDM6A, and TET2 are highly mutated in variety of cancers. We are confident that dbEM will be very useful in cancer research particularly in the field of epigenetic proteins based cancer therapeutics. This database is available for public at URL: http://crdd.osdd.net/raghava/dbem.

  19. C-State: an interactive web app for simultaneous multi-gene visualization and comparative epigenetic pattern search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sowpati, Divya Tej; Srivastava, Surabhi; Dhawan, Jyotsna; Mishra, Rakesh K

    2017-09-13

    Comparative epigenomic analysis across multiple genes presents a bottleneck for bench biologists working with NGS data. Despite the development of standardized peak analysis algorithms, the identification of novel epigenetic patterns and their visualization across gene subsets remains a challenge. We developed a fast and interactive web app, C-State (Chromatin-State), to query and plot chromatin landscapes across multiple loci and cell types. C-State has an interactive, JavaScript-based graphical user interface and runs locally in modern web browsers that are pre-installed on all computers, thus eliminating the need for cumbersome data transfer, pre-processing and prior programming knowledge. C-State is unique in its ability to extract and analyze multi-gene epigenetic information. It allows for powerful GUI-based pattern searching and visualization. We include a case study to demonstrate its potential for identifying user-defined epigenetic trends in context of gene expression profiles.

  20. [Epigenetics' implication in autism spectrum disorders: A review].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamza, M; Halayem, S; Mrad, R; Bourgou, S; Charfi, F; Belhadj, A

    2017-08-01

    The etiology of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is complex and multifactorial, and the roles of genetic and environmental factors in its emergence have been well documented. Current research tends to indicate that these two factors act in a synergistic manner. The processes underlying this interaction are still poorly known, but epigenetic modifications could be the mediator in the gene/environment interface. The epigenetic mechanisms have been implicated in susceptibility to stress and also in the pathogenesis of psychiatric disorders including depression and schizophrenia. Currently, several studies focus on the consideration of the etiological role of epigenetic regulation in ASD. The object of this review is to present a summary of current knowledge of an epigenetic hypothesis in ASD, outlining the recent findings in this field. Using Pubmed, we did a systematic review of the literature researching words such as: autism spectrum disorders, epigenetics, DNA methylation and histone modification. Epigenetic refers to the molecular process modulating gene expression without changes in the DNA sequence. The most studied epigenetic mechanisms are those that alter the chromatin structure including DNA methylation of cytosine residues in CpG dinucleotides and post-translational histone modifications. In ASD several arguments support the epigenetic hypothesis. In fact, there is a frequent association between ASD and genetic diseases whose epigenetic etiologies are recognized. A disturbance in the expression of genes involved in the epigenetic regulation has also been described in this disorder. Some studies have demonstrated changes in the DNA methylation of several autism candidate genes including the gene encoding the oxytocin receptor (OXTR), the RELN and the SHANK3 genes. Beyond the analysis of candidate genes, recent epigenome-wide association studies have investigated the methylation level of several other genes and showed hypomethylation of the whole DNA in brain

  1. Characterization of Chromatin Structure-associated Histone Modifications in Breast Cancer Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chang Pyo Hong

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Chromatin structure and dynamics that are influenced by epigenetic marks, such as histone modification and DNA methylation, play a crucial role in modulating gene transcription. To understand the relationship between histone modifications and regulatory elements in breast cancer cells, we compared our chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-Seq histone modification patterns for histone H3K4me1, H3K4me3, H3K9/16ac, and H3K27me3 in MCF-7 cells with publicly available formaldehyde-assisted isolation of regulatory elements (FAIRE-chip signals in human chromosomes 8, 11, and 12, identified by a method called FAIRE. Active regulatory elements defined by FAIRE were highly associated with active histone modifications, like H3K4me3 and H3K9/16ac, especially near transcription start sites. The H3K9/16ac-enriched genes that overlapped with FAIRE signals (FAIRE-H3K9/14ac were moderately correlated with gene expression levels. We also identified functional sequence motifs at H3K4me1-enriched FAIRE sites upstream of putative promoters, suggesting that regulatory elements could be associated with H3K4me1 to be regarded as distal regulatory elements. Our results might provide an insight into epigenetic regulatory mechanisms explaining the association of histone modifications with open chromatin structure in breast cancer cells.

  2. Age-associated chromatin relaxation is enhanced in Huntington's disease mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeon, Kyuheum; Cho, Sunwha; Park, Jung Sun; Kim, Jisun; Jeon, Jeha; Song, Jinhoi; Kim, Seokho; Jeong, Sangkyun; Seo, Hyemyung; Kang, Yong-Kook

    2017-01-01

    Expansion of polyglutamine stretch in the huntingtin (HTT) protein is a major cause of Huntington's disease (HD). The polyglutamine part in HTT interacts with various proteins implicated in epigenetic regulation of genes, suggesting that mutant HTT may disturb the integrity of the epigenetic system. Here, we used a PCRseq-based method to examine expression profile of 395 exonic segments from 260 “epi-driver” genes in splenic T lymphocytes from aged HD mice. We identified 67 exonic segments differentially expressed between young and aged HD mice, most of them upregulated in the aged. Polycomb-repressive complex (PRC)-regulated genes (PRGs) were markedly upregulated in aged HD mice, consistent with downregulation of PRC genes. Epi-driver gene categories of lysine-methylation, lysine-demethylation, arginine-methylation, and PRG showed differential age-associated changes between HD and control. Analyzing the pattern of change in epi-driver gene expressions hinted at an enhanced shift in HD chromatin to a more accessible state with age, which was experimentally demonstrated by DNase-I-hypersensitivity sequencing showing increased chromatin accessibility in HD cells compared to control. We suggest the global change can potentially relieve chromatin-induced repression of many genes, and the unintended expressions of some detrimental proteins could alter T cell function to a greater degree in aged HD mice. PMID:28288000

  3. Discussing epigenetics in Southern California: a report from the International Symposium on Epigenetic Control and Cellular Plasticity, UCI, December 15-16, 2011.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rattner, Barbara P

    2012-04-01

    With the goal of discussing how epigenetic control and chromatin remodeling contribute to the various processes that lead to cellular plasticity and disease, this symposium marks the collaboration between the Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM) in France and the University of California, Irvine (UCI). Organized by Paolo Sassone-Corsi (UCI) and held at the Beckman Center of the National Academy of Sciences at the UCI campus December 15-16, 2011, this was the first of a series of international conferences on epigenetics dedicated to the scientific community in Southern California. The meeting also served as the official kick off for the newly formed Center for Epigenetics and Metabolism at the School of Medicine, UCI (http://cem.igb.uci.edu).

  4. [The impact of chromatin modification on the development of chronic complications in patients with diabetes].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wegner, Małgorzata; Pioruńska-Stolzmann, Maria; Jagodziński, Paweł P

    2015-08-19

    Diabetes is a chronic, metabolic disease. Over 347 million people worldwide have diabetes. Chronic complications (retinopathy, nephropathy or neuropathy) are the major dangerous outcome of this disease. Recent studies indicate a significant role of epigenetic regulation in the development of chronic complications in patients with diabetes. Hyperglycemia could cause abnormal regulation of the activity of enzymes participating in the post-translational histone modifications (PTHMs) and initiation of changes in patterns of DNA methylation. It leads to modification of chromatin structure. These epigenetic abnormalities result in changes in the expression of genes involved in development of chronic inflammation, such as NF-KAPPAB (nuclear factor kappaB gene), TNFα (tumor necrosis factor a gene), IL6 (interleukin 6 gene) or MCP1 (monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 gene). It enhances endothelial cell dysfunction, which plays an important role in development of chronic, diabetic complications. In addition, caused by hyperglycemia epigenetic modifications changes in structure of chromatin explains "metabolic memory", a phenomenon of presence of pathological pathways related to the prolonged hyperglycemia in the past, despite maintaining good metabolic control later on.

  5. The impact of chromatin modification on the development of chronic complications in patients with diabetes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Małgorzata Wegner

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Diabetes is a chronic, metabolic disease. Over 347 million people worldwide have diabetes. Chronic complications (retinopathy, nephropathy or neuropathy are the major dangerous outcome of this disease. Recent studies indicate a significant role of epigenetic regulation in the development of chronic complications in patients with diabetes. Hyperglycemia could cause abnormal regulation of the activity of enzymes participating in the post-translational histone modifications (PTHMs and initiation of changes in patterns of DNA methylation. It leads to modification of chromatin structure. These epigenetic abnormalities result in changes in the expression of genes involved in development of chronic inflammation, such as NF-KAPPAB (nuclear factor kappaB gene, TNFα (tumor necrosis factor a gene, IL6 (interleukin 6 gene or MCP1 (monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 gene. It enhances endothelial cell dysfunction, which plays an important role in development of chronic, diabetic complications. In addition, caused by hyperglycemia epigenetic modifications changes in structure of chromatin explains “metabolic memory”, a phenomenon of presence of pathological pathways related to the prolonged hyperglycemia in the past, despite maintaining good metabolic control later on.

  6. Epigenetics in an ecotoxicological context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandegehuchte, Michiel B; Janssen, Colin R

    2014-04-01

    Epigenetics can play a role in interactions between chemicals and exposed species, between species and abiotic ecosystem components or between species of the same or another population in a community. Technological progress and advanced insights into epigenetic processes have led to the description of epigenetic features (mainly DNA methylation) in many ecologically relevant species: algae, plants, several invertebrates and fish. Epigenetic changes in plants, insects and cladocerans have been reported to be induced by various environmental stress factors including nutrition or water deficiency, grazing, light or temperature alterations, social environment, and dissolved organic matter concentrations. As regards chemicals, studies in rats and mice exposed to specific pesticides, hydrocarbons, dioxins, and endocrine disrupting chemicals demonstrated the induction of epigenetic changes, suggesting the need for further research with these substances in an ecotoxicological context. In fish and plants, exposure to polyaromatic hydrocarbons, metals, and soluble fractions of solid waste affected the epigenetic status. A novel concept in ecotoxicological epigenetics is the induction of transgenerational stress resistance upon chemical exposure, as demonstrated in rice exposed to metals. Evaluating epigenetics in ecotoxicological field studies is a second relatively new approach. A cryptic lineage of earthworms had developed arsenic tolerance in the field, concurrent with specific DNA methylation patterns. Flatfish caught in the framework of environmental monitoring had developed tumours, exhibiting specific DNA methylation patterns. Two main potential implications of epigenetics in an ecotoxicological context are (1) the possibility of transgenerationally inherited, chemical stress-induced epigenetic changes with associated phenotypes and (2) epigenetically induced adaptation to stress upon long-term chemical exposure. Key knowledge gaps are concerned with the causality of

  7. Understanding the genetic and epigenetic architecture in complex network of rice flowering pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Changhui; Chen, Dan; Fang, Jun; Wang, Pingrong; Deng, Xiaojian; Chu, Chengcai

    2014-12-01

    Although the molecular basis of flowering time control is well dissected in the long day (LD) plant Arabidopsis, it is still largely unknown in the short day (SD) plant rice. Rice flowering time (heading date) is an important agronomic trait for season adaption and grain yield, which is affected by both genetic and environmental factors. During the last decade, as the nature of florigen was identified, notable progress has been made on exploration how florigen gene expression is genetically controlled. In Arabidopsis expression of certain key flowering integrators such as FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC) and FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) are also epigenetically regulated by various chromatin modifications, however, very little is known in rice on this aspect until very recently. This review summarized the advances of both genetic networks and chromatin modifications in rice flowering time control, attempting to give a complete view of the genetic and epigenetic architecture in complex network of rice flowering pathways.

  8. Epigenetics and brain evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keverne, Eric B

    2011-04-01

    Fundamental aspects of mammalian brain evolution occurred in the context of viviparity and placentation brought about by the epigenetic regulation of imprinted genes. Since the fetal placenta hormonally primes the maternal brain, two genomes in one individual are transgenerationally co-adapted to ensure maternal care and nurturing. Advanced aspects of neocortical brain evolution has shown very few genetic changes between monkeys and humans. Although these lineages diverged at approximately the same time as the rat and mouse (20 million years ago), synonymous sequence divergence between the rat and mouse is double that when comparing monkey with human sequences. Paradoxically, encephalization of rat and mouse are remarkably similar, while comparison of the human and monkey shows the human cortex to be three times the size of the monkey. This suggests an element of genetic stability between the brains of monkey and man with a greater emphasis on epigenetics providing adaptable variability.

  9. Epigenetics and cerebral organoids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Forsberg, Sheena Louise; Ilieva, Mirolyuba; Maria Michel, Tanja

    2018-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) affect 1 in 68 children in the US according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It is characterized by impairments in social interactions and communication, restrictive and repetitive patterns of behaviors, and interests. Owing to disease...... also play a role. Some studies indicate a set of candidate genes with different DNA methylation profiles in ASD compared to healthy individuals. Thus epigenetic alterations could help bridging the gene-environment gap in deciphering the underlying neurobiology of autism. However, epigenome...... of the art concerning knowledge on epigenetic changes in autism and how new, cutting edge expertise based on three-dimensional (3D) stem cell technology models (brain organoids) can contribute in elucidating the multiple aspects of disease mechanisms....

  10. Epigenetics and Evolution: Transposons and the Stochastic Epigenetic Modification Model

    OpenAIRE

    Sergio Branciamore; Andrei S. Rodin; Grigoriy Gogoshin; Arthur D. Riggs

    2015-01-01

    In addition to genetic variation, epigenetic variation and transposons can greatly affect the evolutionary fitnesses landscape and gene expression. Previously we proposed a mathematical treatment of a general epigenetic variation model that we called Stochastic Epigenetic Modification (SEM) model. In this study we follow up with a special case, the Transposon Silencing Model (TSM), with, once again, emphasis on quantitative treatment. We have investigated the evolutionary effects of epigeneti...

  11. Epigenetic side-effects of common pharmaceuticals: a potential new field in medicine and pharmacology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Csoka, Antonei B; Szyf, Moshe

    2009-11-01

    The term "Epigenetics" refers to DNA and chromatin modifications that persist from one cell division to the next, despite a lack of change in the underlying DNA sequence. The "epigenome" refers to the overall epigenetic state of a cell, and serves as an interface between the environment and the genome. The epigenome is dynamic and responsive to environmental signals not only during development, but also throughout life; and it is becoming increasingly apparent that chemicals can cause changes in gene expression that persist long after exposure has ceased. Here we present the hypothesis that commonly-used pharmaceutical drugs can cause such persistent epigenetic changes. Drugs may alter epigenetic homeostasis by direct or indirect mechanisms. Direct effects may be caused by drugs which affect chromatin architecture or DNA methylation. For example the antihypertensive hydralazine inhibits DNA methylation. An example of an indirectly acting drug is isotretinoin, which has transcription factor activity. A two-tier mechanism is postulated for indirect effects in which acute exposure to a drug influences signaling pathways that may lead to an alteration of transcription factor activity at gene promoters. This stimulation results in the altered expression of receptors, signaling molecules, and other proteins necessary to alter genetic regulatory circuits. With more chronic exposure, cells adapt by an unknown hypothetical process that results in more permanent modifications to DNA methylation and chromatin structure, leading to enduring alteration of a given epigenetic network. Therefore, any epigenetic side-effect caused by a drug may persist after the drug is discontinued. It is further proposed that some iatrogenic diseases such as tardive dyskinesia and drug-induced SLE are epigenetic in nature. If this hypothesis is correct the consequences for modern medicine are profound, since it would imply that our current understanding of pharmacology is an oversimplification

  12. UV-induced structural changes in chromatin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lang, H.; Zimmer, C.; Vengerov, Yu.Yu.

    1985-01-01

    UV-induced structural alterations of chromatin were studied by means of CD, electron microscopic, and gel electrophoretic measurements. The results indicate that chromatin undergoes serious structural changes after irradiation even at very low fluences. In the low fluence range the structural transitions from the higher ordered chromatin structure to the unfolded state occur without detectable changes in the content of histone H1 and of the core histones. Histone H1 disappears only at fluences above 10 kJ/m 2 . Furthermore, DNA in chromatin is much more sensitive against UV-irradiation and shows a higher degree of strand scission relative to free DNA. While fragmentation in free DNA occurs at fluences above 15 kJ/m 2 , it occurs even at 5.5 kJ/m 2 in the case of chromatin. The biological meaning of the observed UV-induced structural alterations of chromatin is discussed. (author)

  13. Tissue- and strain-specific effects of a genotoxic carcinogen 1,3-butadiene on chromatin and transcription.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Israel, Jennifer W; Chappell, Grace A; Simon, Jeremy M; Pott, Sebastian; Safi, Alexias; Lewis, Lauren; Cotney, Paul; Boulos, Hala S; Bodnar, Wanda; Lieb, Jason D; Crawford, Gregory E; Furey, Terrence S; Rusyn, Ivan

    2018-02-01

    Epigenetic effects of environmental chemicals are under intense investigation to fill existing knowledge gaps between environmental/occupational exposures and adverse health outcomes. Chromatin accessibility is one prominent mechanism of epigenetic control of transcription, and understanding of the chemical effects on both could inform the causal role of epigenetic alterations in disease mechanisms. In this study, we hypothesized that baseline variability in chromatin organization and transcription profiles among various tissues and mouse strains influence the outcome of exposure to the DNA damaging chemical 1,3-butadiene. To test this hypothesis, we evaluated DNA damage along with comprehensive quantification of RNA transcripts (RNA-seq), identification of accessible chromatin (ATAC-seq), and characterization of regions with histone modifications associated with active transcription (ChIP-seq for acetylation at histone 3 lysine 27, H3K27ac). We collected these data in the lung, liver, and kidney of mice from two genetically divergent strains, C57BL/6J and CAST/EiJ, that were exposed to clean air or to 1,3-butadiene (~600 ppm) for 2 weeks. We found that tissue effects dominate differences in both gene expression and chromatin states, followed by strain effects. At baseline, xenobiotic metabolism was consistently more active in CAST/EiJ, while immune system pathways were more active in C57BL/6J across tissues. Surprisingly, even though all three tissues in both strains harbored butadiene-induced DNA damage, little transcriptional effect of butadiene was observed in liver and kidney. Toxicologically relevant effects of butadiene in the lung were on the pathways of xenobiotic metabolism and inflammation. We also found that variability in chromatin accessibility across individuals (i.e., strains) only partially explains the variability in transcription. This study showed that variation in the basal states of epigenome and transcriptome may be useful indicators for

  14. Interpopulation hybridization generates meiotically stable rDNA epigenetic variants in allotetraploid Tragopogon mirus

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Matyášek, Roman; Dobešová, Eva; Húska, Dalibor; Ježková, Ivana; Soltis, P. S.; Soltis, D.E.; Kovařík, Aleš

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 85, č. 3 (2016), s. 362-377 ISSN 0960-7412 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-34632S; GA ČR GBP501/12/G090; GA ČR(CZ) GA13-10057S Institutional support: RVO:68081707 Keywords : allopolyploid * chromatin modification * epigenetic variants Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 5.901, year: 2016

  15. Epigenetic mechanisms of alcoholism and stress-related disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmisano, Martina; Pandey, Subhash C

    2017-05-01

    Stress-related disorders, such as anxiety, early life stress, and posttraumatic stress disorder appear to be important factors in promoting alcoholism, as alcohol consumption can temporarily attenuate the negative affective symptoms of these disorders. Several molecules involved in signaling pathways may contribute to the neuroadaptation induced during alcohol dependence and stress disorders, and among these, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), corticotropin releasing factor (CRF), neuropeptide Y (NPY) and opioid peptides (i.e., nociceptin and dynorphin) are involved in the interaction of stress and alcohol. In fact, alterations in the expression and function of these molecules have been associated with the pathophysiology of stress-related disorders and alcoholism. In recent years, various studies have focused on the epigenetic mechanisms that regulate chromatin architecture, thereby modifying gene expression. Interestingly, epigenetic modifications in specific brain regions have been shown to be associated with the neurobiology of psychiatric disorders, including alcoholism and stress. In particular, the enzymes responsible for chromatin remodeling (i.e., histone deacetylases and methyltransferases, DNA methyltransferases) have been identified as common molecular mechanisms for the interaction of stress and alcohol and have become promising therapeutic targets to treat or prevent alcoholism and associated emotional disorders. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  16. The role of vitamin C in epigenetic regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jolanta Guz

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Vitamin C (L-ascorbic acid is a micronutrient best known for its anti-scurvy activity in humans. Vitamin C is involved in many biological processes involving enzymatic reactions that are catalyzed by members of dioxygenases which use Fe(II and 2-oxoglutarate as a co-substrate.The article reviews recent data that suggest the involvement of ascorbate in dioxygenases catalyzed chromatin and DNA modifications which thereby contribute to epigenetic regulation. Concerning chromatin modification, the dioxygenases are involved in distinct demethylation reactions with varying specificity for the position of the lysine on the target histone. TET hydroxylases catalyse the oxidation of methyl groups in the 5 position of cytosine in DNA yielding 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, while further iterative oxidation reactions results in the formation of 5-formylcytosine and 5-carboxylcytosine. A few previous studies demonstrated that ascorbate may enhance generation of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine in cultured cells, probably acting as a cofactor of TETs during hydroxylation of 5-methylcytosine. Physiological concentrations of ascorbate in human serum (10-100 μM may guarantee stable level of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, a modification necessary for epigenetic function of the cell. 5-Hydroxymethylcytosine level is substantially decreased in almost all investigated cancers, what may be linked with cancer development. Therefore, it is possible that supplementation with ascorbate could contribute to better management of individual cancer patient. This issue is also discussed in our paper.

  17. Rules governing the mechanism of epigenetic reprogramming memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luu, Phuc-Loi; Gerovska, Daniela; Schöler, Hans R; Araúzo-Bravo, Marcos J

    2018-02-01

    Disclosing the mechanisms that regulate reprogramming memory. We established computational procedure to find DNA methylation somatic memory sites (SMSs) at single CpGs and integrated them with genomics, epigenomics, transcriptomics and imprinting information. Reprogramming memory persists at late passages in low methylated regions. Contrarily to hypomethylated, hypermethylated SMSs occur at evolutionary conserved sites overlapping active transcription loci in dynamic chromatin regions. The epigenetic-memory molecular origin is the expression of source-cell transcription factors protecting hypomethylated SMSs in euchromatin from de novo methylation, keeping source-cell lineage-specific loci in induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells incompletely silenced. Sites in lineage-specific genes of different-from-those-of-the-source-cell lineages remain hypermethylated in heterochromatin regions becoming permanently silenced. SMSs cause differential expression between iPS cells and embryonic stem cells through two mechanisms: 'epigenetic/expression memory rule', the DNA unreprogramming methylation status coupled with chromatin states induces differentially expressed genes. 'Imprinting control', the change of DNA methylation status in imprinting control regions induces differential expression of imprinted genes.

  18. Methylation dynamics, epigenetic fidelity and X chromosome structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riggs, A D; Xiong, Z; Wang, L; LeBon, J M

    1998-01-01

    DNA methylation of the X chromosome is reviewed and discussed, with emphasis on the partial methylation seen in the mouse X-linked Pgk1 promoter region. A new study of partial methylation is presented in which the methylation of CpG site H3 in the mouse Igf2 upstream region was quantitatively measured during growth of subcloned cells in tissue culture. Before subcloning the average methylation level was 50%. After subcloning, methylation was highly variable in early stage clones. With continued passage, clones initially having high methylation lost methylation, whereas clones initially having low methylation gained methylation. By about the 25th generation, all clones had returned to a steady-state methylation level of 50%. These findings are discussed in the context of epigenetic mechanisms and epigenetic fidelity. Interpretation of the results is made according to a model that assumes stochastic methylation and demethylation, with rate parameters influenced by local chromatin structure. A second type of study is reported in which we have measured chromatin accessibility differences between the active X chromosome (Xa) and the inactive X chromosome (Xi). We found that Xa/Xi differences in accessibility to DNase I are surprisingly labile. Relatively infrequent DNA nicks rapidly eliminate differential accessibility.

  19. Bivalent Epigenetic Control of Oncofetal Gene Expression in Cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaidi, Sayyed K; Frietze, Seth E; Gordon, Jonathan A; Heath, Jessica L; Messier, Terri; Hong, Deli; Boyd, Joseph R; Kang, Mingu; Imbalzano, Anthony N; Lian, Jane B; Stein, Janet L; Stein, Gary S

    2017-12-01

    Multiple mechanisms of epigenetic control that include DNA methylation, histone modification, noncoding RNAs, and mitotic gene bookmarking play pivotal roles in stringent gene regulation during lineage commitment and maintenance. Experimental evidence indicates that bivalent chromatin domains, i.e., genome regions that are marked by both H3K4me3 (activating) and H3K27me3 (repressive) histone modifications, are a key property of pluripotent stem cells. Bivalency of developmental genes during the G 1 phase of the pluripotent stem cell cycle contributes to cell fate decisions. Recently, some cancer types have been shown to exhibit partial recapitulation of bivalent chromatin modifications that are lost along with pluripotency, suggesting a mechanism by which cancer cells reacquire properties that are characteristic of undifferentiated, multipotent cells. This bivalent epigenetic control of oncofetal gene expression in cancer cells may offer novel insights into the onset and progression of cancer and may provide specific and selective options for diagnosis as well as for therapeutic intervention. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  20. The epigenetic landscape of clear-cell renal cell carcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katarzyna Kluzek

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC is the most common subtype of all kidney tumors. During the last few years, epigenetics has emerged as an important mechanism in ccRCC pathogenesis. Recent reports, involving large-scale methylation and sequencing analyses, have identified genes frequently inactivated by promoter methylation and recurrent mutations in genes encoding chromatin regulatory proteins. Interestingly, three of detected genes (PBRM1, SETD2 and BAP1 are located on chromosome 3p, near the VHL gene, inactivated in over 80% ccRCC cases. This suggests that 3p alterations are an essential part of ccRCC pathogenesis. Moreover, most of the proteins encoded by these genes cooperate in histone H3 modifications. The aim of this review is to summarize the latest discoveries shedding light on deregulation of chromatin machinery in ccRCC. Newly described ccRCC-specific epigenetic alterations could potentially serve as novel diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers and become an object of novel therapeutic strategies.

  1. Chromatin dynamics during DSB repair

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Falk, Martin; Lukášová, Emilie; Gabrielová, Barbora; Ondřej, Vladan; Kozubek, Stanislav

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 1773, č. 10 (2007), s. 1534-1545 ISSN 0167-4889 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GP204/06/P349; GA ČR(CZ) 1QS500040508; GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA1065203; GA MŠk(CZ) 1P05OC084 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50040507; CEZ:AV0Z50040702 Keywords : chromatin structure * double- strand breaks (DSB) * DNA repair Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 4.374, year: 2007

  2. Epigenetics of autism spectrum disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schanen, N Carolyn

    2006-10-15

    The autism spectrum disorders (ASD) comprise a complex group of behaviorally related disorders that are primarily genetic in origin. Involvement of epigenetic regulatory mechanisms in the pathogenesis of ASD has been suggested by the occurrence of ASD in patients with disorders arising from epigenetic mutations (fragile X syndrome) or that involve key epigenetic regulatory factors (Rett syndrome). Moreover, the most common recurrent cytogenetic abnormalities in ASD involve maternally derived duplications of the imprinted domain on chromosome 15q11-13. Thus, parent of origin effects on sharing and linkage to imprinted regions on chromosomes 15q and 7q suggest that these regions warrant specific examination from an epigenetic perspective, particularly because epigenetic modifications do not change the primary genomic sequence, allowing risk epialleles to evade detection using standard screening strategies. This review examines the potential role of epigenetic factors in the etiology of ASD.

  3. Epigenetics of Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siu, Michelle T; Weksberg, Rosanna

    2017-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD), one of the most common childhood neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs), is diagnosed in 1 of every 68 children. ASD is incredibly heterogeneous both clinically and aetiologically. The etiopathogenesis of ASD is known to be complex, including genetic, environmental and epigenetic factors. Normal epigenetic marks modifiable by both genetics and environmental exposures can result in epigenetic alterations that disrupt the regulation of gene expression, negatively impacting biological pathways important for brain development. In this chapter we aim to summarize some of the important literature that supports a role for epigenetics in the underlying molecular mechanism of ASD. We provide evidence from work in genetics, from environmental exposures and finally from more recent studies aimed at directly determining ASD-specific epigenetic patterns, focusing mainly on DNA methylation (DNAm). Finally, we briefly discuss some of the implications of current research on potential epigenetic targets for therapeutics and novel avenues for future work.

  4. Epigenetic microRNA Regulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wiklund, Erik Digman

    2011-01-01

    and confirming transcriptional start sites can be difficult. Epigenetics, gene regulatory and DNA modification mechanisms not involving a change to the primary sequence, have been implied in the regulation of a number of miRNA loci. Both epigenetic and miRNA signatures are broadly altered in cancer......, and are thought to play essential roles in cancer etiology and progression. Here, we aimed to identify epigenetic miRNA deregulation in bladder and oral carcinoma, and to develop a robust approach to epigenetic miRNA prediction and detection. In addition, non-canonical epigenetic functions directed by a nuclear...... miRNA were investigated. In summary, we report that the miR-200 family and miR-205 are coordinately epigenetically regulated in a variety of cell lines, tumors and normal tissues. MiR-200c expression is correlated with bladder cancer disease progression, and miR-375 levels in oral rinse can...

  5. Genetic and epigenetic variations induced by wheat-rye 2R and 5R monosomic addition lines.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shulan Fu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Monosomic alien addition lines (MAALs can easily induce structural variation of chromosomes and have been used in crop breeding; however, it is unclear whether MAALs will induce drastic genetic and epigenetic alterations. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In the present study, wheat-rye 2R and 5R MAALs together with their selfed progeny and parental common wheat were investigated through amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP and methylation-sensitive amplification polymorphism (MSAP analyses. The MAALs in different generations displayed different genetic variations. Some progeny that only contained 42 wheat chromosomes showed great genetic/epigenetic alterations. Cryptic rye chromatin has introgressed into the wheat genome. However, one of the progeny that contained cryptic rye chromatin did not display outstanding genetic/epigenetic variation. 78 and 49 sequences were cloned from changed AFLP and MSAP bands, respectively. Blastn search indicated that almost half of them showed no significant similarity to known sequences. Retrotransposons were mainly involved in genetic and epigenetic variations. Genetic variations basically affected Gypsy-like retrotransposons, whereas epigenetic alterations affected Copia-like and Gypsy-like retrotransposons equally. Genetic and epigenetic variations seldom affected low-copy coding DNA sequences. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The results in the present study provided direct evidence to illustrate that monosomic wheat-rye addition lines could induce different and drastic genetic/epigenetic variations and these variations might not be caused by introgression of rye chromatins into wheat. Therefore, MAALs may be directly used as an effective means to broaden the genetic diversity of common wheat.

  6. Epigenetics modifications and therapeutic prospects in human thyroid cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Graziella eCatalano

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available At present no successful treatment is available for advanced thyroid cancer, which comprises poorly differentiated, anaplastic, and metastatic or recurrent differentiated thyroid cancer not responding to radioiodine. In the last few years, biologically targeted therapies for advanced thyroid carcinomas have been proposed on the basis of the recognition of key oncogenic mutations. Although the results of several phase II trials look promising, none of the patients treated had a complete response, and only a minority of them had a partial response, suggesting that the treatment is, at best, effective in stabilizing patients with progressive disease. Epigenetic refers to the study of heritable changes in gene expression that occur without any alteration in the primary DNA sequence. The epigenetic processes establish and maintain the global and local chroma¬tin states that determine gene expression. Epigenetic abnormalities are present in almost all cancers and, together with genetic changes, drive tumour progression. Various genes involved in the control of cell proliferation and invasion (p16INK4A, RASSF1A,PTEN, Rap1GAP, TIMP3, DAPK, RARβ2, E-cadherin, and CITED1 as well as genes specific of thyroid differentiation (Na+/I- symport, TSH receptor, pendrin, SL5A8, and TTF-1 present aberrant methylation in thyroid cancer.This review deals with the most frequent epigenetic alterations in thyroid cancer and focuses on epigenetic therapy, whose goal is to target the chromatin in rapidly dividing tumour cells and potentially restore normal cell functions. Experimental data and clinical trials, especially using deacetylase inhibitors and demethylating agents, are discussed.

  7. The architects of crenarchaeal chromatin : A biophysical characterization of chromatin proteins from Sulfolobus solfataricus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Driessen, Rosalie Paula Catharina

    2014-01-01

    Understanding of chromatin organization and compaction in Archaea is currently limited. The genome of several megabasepairs long is folded by a set of small chromatin proteins to fit into the micron-sized cell. A first step in understanding archaeal chromatin organization is to study the action of

  8. Nascent chromatin capture proteomics determines chromatin dynamics during DNA replication and identifies unknown fork components

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alabert, Constance; Bukowski-Wills, Jimi-Carlo; Lee, Sung-Po

    2014-01-01

    replication in human cells. NCC relies on biotin-dUTP labelling of replicating DNA, affinity purification and quantitative proteomics. Comparing nascent chromatin with mature post-replicative chromatin, we provide association dynamics for 3,995 proteins. The replication machinery and 485 chromatin factors...

  9. Nature or nurture: let food be your epigenetic medicine in chronic inflammatory disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szarc vel Szic, Katarzyna; Ndlovu, Matladi N; Haegeman, Guy; Vanden Berghe, Wim

    2010-12-15

    Numerous clinical, physiopathological and epidemiological studies have underlined the detrimental or beneficial role of nutritional factors in complex inflammation related disorders such as allergy, asthma, obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis and cancer. Today, nutritional research has shifted from alleviating nutrient deficiencies to chronic disease prevention. It is known that lifestyle, environmental conditions and nutritional compounds influence gene expression. Gene expression states are set by transcriptional activators and repressors and are often locked in by cell-heritable chromatin states. Only recently, it has been observed that the environmental conditions and daily diet can affect transgenerational gene expression via "reversible" heritable epigenetic mechanisms. Epigenetic changes in DNA methylation patterns at CpG sites (epimutations) or corrupt chromatin states of key inflammatory genes and noncoding RNAs, recently emerged as major governing factors in cancer, chronic inflammatory and metabolic disorders. Reciprocally, inflammation, metabolic stress and diet composition can also change activities of the epigenetic machinery and indirectly or directly change chromatin marks. This has recently launched re-exploration of anti-inflammatory bioactive food components for characterization of their effects on epigenome modifying enzymatic activities (acetylation, methylation, phosphorylation, ribosylation, oxidation, ubiquitination, sumoylation). This may allow to improve healthy aging by reversing disease prone epimutations involved in chronic inflammatory and metabolic disorders. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. A repetitive elements perspective in Polycomb epigenetics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina eCasa

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Repetitive elements comprise over two-thirds of the human genome. For a long time, these elements have received little attention since they were considered non functional. On the contrary, recent evidence indicates that they play central roles in genome integrity, gene expression and disease. Indeed, repeats display meiotic instability associated with disease and are located within common fragile sites, which are hotspots of chromosome rearrangements in tumors. Moreover, a variety of diseases have been associated with aberrant transcription of repetitive elements. Overall this indicates that appropriate regulation of repetitive elements’ activity is fundamental.Polycomb group (PcG proteins are epigenetic regulators that are essential for the normal development of multicellular organisms. Mammalian PcG proteins are involved in fundamental processes, such as cellular memory, cell proliferation, genomic imprinting, X-inactivation, and cancer development. PcG proteins can convey their activity through long-distance interactions also on different chromosomes. This indicates that the 3D organization of PcG proteins contributes significantly to their function. However, it is still unclear how these complex mechanisms are orchestrated and which role PcG proteins play in the multi-level organization of gene regulation. Intriguingly, the greatest proportion of Polycomb-mediated chromatin modifications is located in genomic repeats and it has been suggested that they could provide a binding platform for Polycomb proteins.Here, these lines of evidence are woven together to discuss how repetitive elements could contribute to chromatin organization in the 3D nuclear space.

  11. RegulatING chromatin regulators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Satpathy, Shankha; Nabbi, Arash; Riabowol, Karl

    2013-01-01

    The five human ING genes encode at least 15 splicing isoforms, most of which affect cell growth, differentiation and apoptosis through their ability to alter gene expression by epigenetic mechanisms. Since their discovery in 1996, ING proteins have been classified as type II tumour suppressors......-tuned in the physiological setting and how they add to the repertoire of activities affected by the INGs. In the present paper we review the different PTMs that have been reported to occur on INGs. We discuss the PTMs that modulate ING function under normal conditions and in response to a variety of stresses. We also...

  12. Structure of the CENP-A nucleosome and its implications for centromeric chromatin architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tachiwana, Hiroaki; Kurumizaka, Hitoshi

    2011-01-01

    Centromeres are dictated by the epigenetic inheritance of the centromeric nucleosome containing the centromere-specific histone H3 variant, CENP-A. The structure of the CENP-A nucleosome has been considered to be the fundamental architecture of the centromeric chromatin. Controversy exists in the literature regarding the CENP-A nucleosome structures, with octasome, hemisome, compact octasome, hexasome, and tetrasome models being reported. Some of these CENP-A nucleosome models may correspond to transient intermediates for the assembly of the mature CENP-A nucleosome; however, their significances are still unclear. Therefore, the structure of the mature CENP-A nucleosome has been eagerly awaited. We reconstituted the human CENP-A nucleosome with its cognate centromeric DNA fragment, and determined its crystal structure. In this review, we describe the structure and the physical properties of the CENP-A nucleosome, and discuss their implications for centromeric chromatin architecture.

  13. MeCP2, A Modulator of Neuronal Chromatin Organization Involved in Rett Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez de Paz, Alexia; Ausió, Juan

    2017-01-01

    From an epigenetic perspective, the genomic chromatin organization of neurons exhibits unique features when compared to somatic cells. Methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2), through its ability to bind to methylated DNA, seems to be a major player in regulating such unusual organization. An important contribution to this uniqueness stems from the intrinsically disordered nature of this highly abundant chromosomal protein in neurons. Upon its binding to methylated/hydroxymethylated DNA, MeCP2 is able to recruit a plethora of interacting protein and RNA partners. The final outcome is a highly specialized chromatin organization wherein linker histones (histones of the H1 family) and MeCP2 share an organizational role that dynamically changes during neuronal development and that it is still poorly understood. MeCP2 mutations alter its chromatin-binding dynamics and/or impair the ability of the protein to interact with some of its partners, resulting in Rett syndrome (RTT). Therefore, deciphering the molecular details involved in the MeCP2 neuronal chromatin arrangement is critical for our understanding of the proper and altered functionality of these cells.

  14. Epigenetic suppression of potassium-chloride co-transporter 2 expression in inflammatory pain induced by complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, C-R; Cheng, J-K; Wu, C-H; Chen, K-H; Liu, C-K

    2017-02-01

    Multiple mechanisms contribute to the stimulus-evoked pain hypersensitivity that may be experienced after peripheral inflammation. Persistent pathological stimuli in many pain conditions affect the expression of certain genes through epigenetic alternations. The main purpose of our study was to investigate the role of epigenetic modification on potassium-chloride co-transporter 2 (KCC2) gene expression in the persistence of inflammatory pain. Persistent inflammatory pain was induced through the injection of complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA) in the left hind paw of rats. Acetyl-histone H3 and H4 level was determined by chromatin immunoprecipitation in the spinal dorsal horn. Pain behaviour and inhibitory synaptic function of spinal cord were determined before and after CFA injection. KCC2 expression was determined by real time RT-PCR and Western blot. Intrathecal KCC2 siRNA (2 μg per 10 μL per rat) or HDAC inhibitor (10 μg per 10 μL per rat) was injected once daily for 3 days before CFA injection. Persistent inflammatory pain epigenetically suppressed KCC2 expression through histone deacetylase (HDAC)-mediated histone hypoacetylation, resulting in decreased inhibitory signalling efficacy. KCC2 knock-down caused by intrathecal administration of KCC2 siRNA in naïve rats reduced KCC2 expression in the spinal cord, leading to sensitized pain behaviours and impaired inhibitory synaptic transmission in their spinal cords. Moreover, intrathecal HDAC inhibitor injection in CFA rats increased KCC2 expression, partially restoring the spinal inhibitory synaptic transmission and relieving the sensitized pain behaviour. These findings suggest that the transcription of spinal KCC2 is regulated by histone acetylation epigenetically following CFA. Persistent pain suppresses KCC2 expression through HDAC-mediated histone hypoacetylation and consequently impairs the inhibitory function of inhibitory interneurons. Drugs such as HDAC inhibitors that suppress the influences of

  15. Human mutations affect the epigenetic/bookmarking function of HNF1B.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lerner, Jonathan; Bagattin, Alessia; Verdeguer, Francisco; Makinistoglu, Munevver P; Garbay, Serge; Felix, Tristan; Heidet, Laurence; Pontoglio, Marco

    2016-09-30

    Bookmarking factors are transcriptional regulators involved in the mitotic transmission of epigenetic information via their ability to remain associated with mitotic chromatin. The mechanisms through which bookmarking factors bind to mitotic chromatin remain poorly understood. HNF1β is a bookmarking transcription factor that is frequently mutated in patients suffering from renal multicystic dysplasia and diabetes. Here, we show that HNF1β bookmarking activity is impaired by naturally occurring mutations found in patients. Interestingly, this defect in HNF1β mitotic chromatin association is rescued by an abrupt decrease in temperature. The rapid relocalization to mitotic chromatin is reversible and driven by a specific switch in DNA-binding ability of HNF1β mutants. Furthermore, we demonstrate that importin-β is involved in the maintenance of the mitotic retention of HNF1β, suggesting a functional link between the nuclear import system and the mitotic localization/translocation of bookmarking factors. Altogether, our studies have disclosed novel aspects on the mechanisms and the genetic programs that account for the mitotic association of HNF1β, a bookmarking factor that plays crucial roles in the epigenetic transmission of information through the cell cycle. © The Author(s) 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  16. The Role of Epigenetic Regulation in Transcriptional Memory in the Immune System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodworth, A M; Holloway, A F

    The immune system is exquisitely poised to identify, respond to, and eradicate pathogens from the body, as well as to produce a more rapid and augmented response to a subsequent encounter with the pathogen. These cellular responses rely on the highly coordinated and rapid activation of gene expression programs as well as the ability of the cell to retain a memory of the initial gene response. It is clear that chromatin structure and epigenetic mechanisms play a crucial role in determining these gene responses, and in fact the immune system has proved an instructive model for investigating the multifaceted mechanisms through which the chromatin landscape contributes to gene expression programs. These mechanisms include modifications to the DNA and histone proteins, the positioning, composition, and remodeling of nucleosomes, as well as the formation of higher-order chromatin structures. Moreover, it is now apparent that epigenetic mechanisms also provide an instrument by which cells can retain memory of the initial transcriptional response, "priming" the genome so that it can respond more quickly to subsequent exposure to the signal. Here, we use the immune system as a model to demonstrate the complex interplay between transcription factors and the chromatin landscape required to orchestrate precise gene responses to external stimuli and further to demonstrate how these interactions can establish memory of past transcriptional events. We focus on what we have learnt from the immune system and how this can inform our understanding of other cellular systems. © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Dynamics of histone H2A, H4 and HS1ph during spermatogenesis with a focus on chromatin condensation and maturity of spermatozoa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhao-Hui; Mu, Shu-Mei; Guo, Ming-Shen; Wu, Jiang-Li; Li, Yan-Qin; Zhang, Han; Wang, Ying; Kang, Xian-Jiang

    2016-04-28

    Histones and histone phosphorylation play vital roles during animal spermatogenesis and spermatozoa maturation. The dynamic distribution of histones H2A and H4 and phosphorylated H2A and H4 at serine 1 (HS1ph) was explored in mammalian and Decapoda germ cells, with a special focus on the distribution of H2A, H4 and HS1ph between mouse condensed spermatozoa chromatin and crab non-condensed spermatozoa chromatin. The distribution of histone marks was also analysed in mature spermatozoa with different chromatin structures. Histone H2A and H4 marks were closely associated with the relatively loose chromatin structure in crab spermatozoa. The significant decrease in the HS1ph signal during spermatogenesis suggests that eliminating most of these epigenetic marks in the nucleusis closely associated with spermatozoa maturity.

  18. The Drosophila Huntington's disease gene ortholog dhtt influences chromatin regulation during development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietz, Kevin N; Di Stefano, Luisa; Maher, Robert C; Zhu, Hui; Macdonald, Marcy E; Gusella, James F; Walker, James A

    2015-01-15

    Huntington's disease is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG expansion mutation in HTT, the gene encoding huntingtin. Evidence from both human genotype-phenotype relationships and mouse model systems suggests that the mutation acts by dysregulating some normal activity of huntingtin. Recent work in the mouse has revealed a role for huntingtin in epigenetic regulation during development. Here, we examine the role of the Drosophila huntingtin ortholog (dhtt) in chromatin regulation in the development of the fly. Although null dhtt mutants display no overt phenotype, we found that dhtt acts as a suppressor of position-effect variegation (PEV), suggesting that it influences chromatin organization. We demonstrate that dhtt affects heterochromatin spreading in a PEV model by modulating histone H3K9 methylation levels at the heterochromatin-euchromatin boundary. To gain mechanistic insights into how dhtt influences chromatin function, we conducted a candidate genetic screen using RNAi lines targeting known PEV modifier genes. We found that dhtt modifies phenotypes caused by knockdown of a number of key epigenetic regulators, including chromatin-associated proteins, histone demethylases (HDMs) and methyltransferases. Notably, dhtt strongly modifies phenotypes resulting from loss of the HDM dLsd1, in both the ovary and wing, and we demonstrate that dhtt appears to act as a facilitator of dLsd1 function in regulating global histone H3K4 methylation levels. These findings suggest that a fundamental aspect of huntingtin function in heterochromatin/euchromatin organization is evolutionarily conserved across phyla. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Epigenetic Modifications and Head and Neck Cancer: Implications for Tumor Progression and Resistance to Therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogerio M. Castilho

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Head and neck squamous carcinoma (HNSCC is the sixth most prevalent cancer and one of the most aggressive malignancies worldwide. Despite continuous efforts to identify molecular markers for early detection, and to develop efficient treatments, the overall survival and prognosis of HNSCC patients remain poor. Accumulated scientific evidences suggest that epigenetic alterations, including DNA methylation, histone covalent modifications, chromatin remodeling and non-coding RNAs, are frequently involved in oral carcinogenesis, tumor progression, and resistance to therapy. Epigenetic alterations occur in an unsystematic manner or as part of the aberrant transcriptional machinery, which promotes selective advantage to the tumor cells. Epigenetic modifications also contribute to cellular plasticity during tumor progression and to the formation of cancer stem cells (CSCs, a small subset of tumor cells with self-renewal ability. CSCs are involved in the development of intrinsic or acquired therapy resistance, and tumor recurrences or relapse. Therefore, the understanding and characterization of epigenetic modifications associated with head and neck carcinogenesis, and the prospective identification of epigenetic markers associated with CSCs, hold the promise for novel therapeutic strategies to fight tumors. In this review, we focus on the current knowledge on epigenetic modifications observed in HNSCC and emerging Epi-drugs capable of sensitizing HNSCC to therapy.

  20. Combinatorial epigenetic deregulation by Helicobacter pylori and Epstein-Barr virus infections in gastric tumourigenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, William Kk; Yu, Jun; Chan, Matthew Tv; To, Ka F; Cheng, Alfred Sl

    2016-07-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms, including DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodelling and microRNAs, convert environmental signals to transcriptional outputs but are commonly hijacked by pathogenic microorganisms. Recent advances in cancer epigenomics have shed new light on the importance of epigenetic deregulation in Helicobacter pylori- and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-driven gastric tumourigenesis. Moreover, it is becoming apparent that epigenetic mechanisms interact through crosstalk and feedback loops, which modify global gene expression patterns. The SWI/SNF remodelling complexes are commonly involved in gastric cancers associated with H. pylori or EBV through different mechanisms, including microRNA-mediated deregulation and genetic mutations. While H. pylori causes epigenetic silencing of tumour-suppressor genes to deregulate cellular pathways, EBV-positive tumours exhibit a widespread and distinctive DNA hypermethylation profile. Given the early successes of epigenetic drugs in haematological malignancies, further studies are mandated to enrich and translate our understanding of combinatorial epigenetic deregulation in gastric cancers into interventional strategies in the clinic. Copyright © 2016 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2016 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  1. Epigenetics primer: why the clinician should care about epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, Julio D

    2013-12-01

    Epigenetics describes heritable alterations of gene expression that do not involve DNA sequence variation and are changeable throughout an organism's lifetime. Not only can epigenetic status influence drug response, but it can also be modulated by drugs. In this review, the three major epigenetic mechanisms are described: covalent DNA modification, histone protein modification, and regulation by noncoding RNA. Further, this review describes how drug therapy can influence, and be influenced by, these mechanisms. Drugs with epigenetic mechanisms are already in use, with many more likely to be approved within the next few years. As the understanding of epigenetic processes improves, so will the ability to use these data in the clinic to improve patient care. © 2013 Pharmacotherapy Publications, Inc.

  2. Common non-epigenetic drugs as epigenetic modulators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lötsch, Jörn; Schneider, Gisbert; Reker, Daniel; Parnham, Michael J; Schneider, Petra; Geisslinger, Gerd; Doehring, Alexandra

    2013-12-01

    Epigenetic effects are exerted by a variety of factors and evidence increases that common drugs such as opioids, cannabinoids, valproic acid, or cytostatics may induce alterations in DNA methylation patterns or histone conformations. These effects occur via chemical structural interactions with epigenetic enzymes, through interactions with DNA repair mechanisms. Computational predictions indicate that one-twentieth of all drugs might potentially interact with human histone deacetylase, which was prospectively experimentally verified for the compound with the highest predicted interaction probability. These epigenetic effects add to wanted and unwanted drug effects, contributing to mechanisms of drug resistance or disease-related and unrelated phenotypes. Because epigenetic changes might be transmitted to offspring, the need for reliable and cost-effective epigenetic screening tools becomes acute. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Chromatin Remodelers: From Function to Dysfunction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gernot Längst

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Chromatin remodelers are key players in the regulation of chromatin accessibility and nucleosome positioning on the eukaryotic DNA, thereby essential for all DNA dependent biological processes. Thus, it is not surprising that upon of deregulation of those molecular machines healthy cells can turn into cancerous cells. Even though the remodeling enzymes are very abundant and a multitude of different enzymes and chromatin remodeling complexes exist in the cell, the particular remodeling complex with its specific nucleosome positioning features must be at the right place at the right time in order to ensure the proper regulation of the DNA dependent processes. To achieve this, chromatin remodeling complexes harbor protein domains that specifically read chromatin targeting signals, such as histone modifications, DNA sequence/structure, non-coding RNAs, histone variants or DNA bound interacting proteins. Recent studies reveal the interaction between non-coding RNAs and chromatin remodeling complexes showing importance of RNA in remodeling enzyme targeting, scaffolding and regulation. In this review, we summarize current understanding of chromatin remodeling enzyme targeting to chromatin and their role in cancer development.

  4. Transcription Through Chromatin - Dynamic Organization of Genes

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Remodeling of chromatin confers it the ability for dynamic change. Remodeling is essential for transcriptional regulation, the first step of gene expression. Chromatin Structure and Gene Expression. Transcription is the first step of gene expression in which RNA synthesis occurs from the DNA (gene) template in a series of.

  5. Chromatin dynamics resolved with force spectroscopy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chien, Fan-Tso

    2011-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells, genomic DNA is organized in chromatin fibers composed of nucleosomes as structural units. A nucleosome contains 1.7 turns of DNA wrapped around a histone octamer and is connected to the adjacent nucleosomes with linker DNA. The folding of chromatin fibers effectively increases

  6. A microscopic analysis of Arabidopsis chromatin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Willemse, J.J.

    2007-01-01

    Genetic information of eukaryotic organisms is stored as DNA in the nuclei of their cells. Nuclear DNA is associated with several proteins, which together form chromatin. The most abundant chromatin proteins arehistones,they arrange the initial packaging step of the DNA. DNA

  7. Mismatch Repair Proteins Initiate Epigenetic Alterations during Inflammation-Driven Tumorigenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maiuri, Ashley R; Peng, Michael; Sriramkumar, Shruthi; Kamplain, Caitlin M; DeStefano Shields, Christina E; Sears, Cynthia L; O'Hagan, Heather M

    2017-07-01

    Aberrant silencing of genes by DNA methylation contributes to cancer, yet how this process is initiated remains unclear. Using a murine model of inflammation-induced tumorigenesis, we tested the hypothesis that inflammation promotes recruitment of epigenetic proteins to chromatin, initiating methylation and gene silencing in tumors. Compared with normal epithelium and noninflammation-induced tumors, inflammation-induced tumors gained DNA methylation at CpG islands, some of which are associated with putative tumor suppressor genes. Hypermethylated genes exhibited enrichment of repressive chromatin marks and reduced expression prior to tumorigenesis, at a time point coinciding with peak levels of inflammation-associated DNA damage. Loss of MutS homolog 2 (MSH2), a mismatch repair (MMR) protein, abrogated early inflammation-induced epigenetic alterations and DNA hypermethylation alterations observed in inflammation-induced tumors. These results indicate that early epigenetic alterations initiated by inflammation and MMR proteins lead to gene silencing during tumorigenesis, revealing a novel mechanism of epigenetic alterations in inflammation-driven cancer. Understanding such mechanisms will inform development of pharmacotherapies to reduce carcinogenesis. Cancer Res; 77(13); 3467-78. ©2017 AACR . ©2017 American Association for Cancer Research.

  8. Epigenetics of kidney disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wanner, Nicola; Bechtel-Walz, Wibke

    2017-07-01

    DNA methylation and histone modifications determine renal programming and the development and progression of renal disease. The identification of the way in which the renal cell epigenome is altered by environmental modifiers driving the onset and progression of renal diseases has extended our understanding of the pathophysiology of kidney disease progression. In this review, we focus on current knowledge concerning the implications of epigenetic modifications during renal disease from early development to chronic kidney disease progression including renal fibrosis, diabetic nephropathy and the translational potential of identifying new biomarkers and treatments for the prevention and therapy of chronic kidney disease and end-stage kidney disease.

  9. Merging data from genetic and epigenetic approaches to better understand autistic spectrum disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grayson, Dennis R; Guidotti, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder that is characterized by a wide range of cognitive and behavioral abnormalities. Genetic research has identified large numbers of genes that contribute to ASD phenotypes. There is compelling evidence that environmental factors contribute to ASD through influences that differentially impact the brain through epigenetic mechanisms. Both genetic mutations and epigenetic influences alter gene expression in different cell types of the brain. Mutations impact the expression of large numbers of genes and also have downstream consequences depending on specific pathways associated with the mutation. Environmental factors impact the expression of sets of genes by altering methylation/hydroxymethylation patterns, local histone modification patterns and chromatin remodeling. Herein, we discuss recent developments in the research of ASD with a focus on epigenetic pathways as a complement to current genetic screening.

  10. Genome-wide analysis of differential transcriptional and epigenetic variability across human immune cell types

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ecker, Simone; Chen, Lu; Pancaldi, Vera

    2017-01-01

    Background: A healthy immune system requires immune cells that adapt rapidly to environmental challenges. This phenotypic plasticity can be mediated by transcriptional and epigenetic variability. Results: We apply a novel analytical approach to measure and compare transcriptional and epigenetic....... Conclusions: Our data highlight the importance of transcriptional and epigenetic variability for the key role of neutrophils as the first responders to inflammatory stimuli. We provide a resource to enable further functional studies into the plasticity of immune cells, which can be accessed from: http...... to be implicated in key immune pathways and are associated with cellular properties and environmental exposure. We also observe increased sex-specific gene expression differences in neutrophils. Neutrophil-specific DNA methylation hypervariable sites are enriched at dynamic chromatin regions and active enhancers...

  11. Nanoparticles in food. Epigenetic changes induced by nanomaterials and possible impact on health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolkova, Bozena; El Yamani, Naouale; Collins, Andrew R; Gutleb, Arno C; Dusinska, Maria

    2015-03-01

    Disturbed epigenetic mechanisms, which developmentally regulate gene expression via modifications to DNA, histone proteins, and chromatin, have been hypothesized to play a key role in many human diseases. Recently it was shown that engineered nanoparticles (NPs), that already have a wide range of applications in various fields including food production, could dramatically affect epigenetic processes, while their ability to induce diseases remains poorly understood. Besides the obvious benefits of the new technologies, it is critical to assess their health effects before proceeding with industrial production. In this article, after surveying the applications of NPs in food technology, we review recent advances in the understanding of epigenetic pathological effects of NPs, and discuss their possible health impact with the aim of avoiding potential health risks posed by the use of nanomaterials in foods and food-packaging. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. TOPICAL REVIEW: The physics of chromatin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiessel, Helmut

    2003-05-01

    Recent progress has been made in the understanding of the physical properties of chromatin - the dense complex of DNA and histone proteins that occupies the nuclei of plant and animal cells. Here I will focus on the two lowest levels of the hierarchy of DNA folding into the chromatin complex. (i) The nucleosome, the chromatin repeating unit consisting of a globular aggregate of eight histone proteins with the DNA wrapped around it: its overcharging, the DNA unwrapping transition, the 'sliding' of the octamer along the DNA. (ii) The 30 nm chromatin fibre, the necklace-like structure of nucleosomes connected via linker DNA: its geometry, its mechanical properties under stretching and its response to changing ionic conditions. I will stress that chromatin combines two seemingly contradictory features: (1) high compaction of DNA within the nuclear envelope and, at the same time, (2) accessibility to genes, promoter regions and gene regulatory sequences.

  13. Epigenetic: A missing paradigm in cellular and molecular pathways of sulfur mustard lung: a prospective and comparative study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saber Imani

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Sulfur mustard (SM, bis- (2-chloroethyl sulphide is a chemical warfare agent that causes DNA alkylation, protein modification and membrane damage. SM can trigger several molecular pathways involved in inflammation and oxidative stress, which cause cell necrosis and apoptosis, and loss of cells integrity and function. Epigenetic regulation of gene expression is a growing research topic and is addressed by DNA methylation, histone modification, chromatin remodeling, and noncoding RNAs expression. It seems SM can induce the epigenetic modifications that are translated into change in gene expression. Classification of epigenetic modifications long after exposure to SM would clarify its mechanism and paves a better strategy for the treatment of SM-affected patients. In this study, we review the key aberrant epigenetic modifications that have important roles in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD and compared with mustard lung.

  14. Epigenetic: A missing paradigm in cellular and molecular pathways of sulfur mustard lung: a prospective and comparative study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imani, Saber; Panahi, Yunes; Salimian, Jafar; Fu, Junjiang; Ghanei, Mostafa

    2015-01-01

    Sulfur mustard (SM, bis- (2-chloroethyl) sulphide) is a chemical warfare agent that causes DNA alkylation, protein modification and membrane damage. SM can trigger several molecular pathways involved in inflammation and oxidative stress, which cause cell necrosis and apoptosis, and loss of cells integrity and function. Epigenetic regulation of gene expression is a growing research topic and is addressed by DNA methylation, histone modification, chromatin remodeling, and noncoding RNAs expression. It seems SM can induce the epigenetic modifications that are translated into change in gene expression. Classification of epigenetic modifications long after exposure to SM would clarify its mechanism and paves a better strategy for the treatment of SM-affected patients. In this study, we review the key aberrant epigenetic modifications that have important roles in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and compared with mustard lung. PMID:26557960

  15. DNA methylation supports intrinsic epigenetic memory in mammalian cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available We have investigated the role of DNA methylation in the initiation and maintenance of silenced chromatin in somatic mammalian cells. We found that a mutated transgene, in which all the CpG dinucleotides have been eliminated, underwent transcriptional silencing to the same extent as the unmodified transgene. These observations demonstrate that DNA methylation is not required for silencing. The silenced CpG-free transgene exhibited all the features of heterochromatin, including silencing of transcriptional activity, delayed DNA replication, lack of histone H3 and H4 acetylation, lack of H3-K4 methylation, and enrichment in tri-methyl-H3-K9. In contrast, when we tested for transgene reactivation using a Cre recombinase-mediated inversion assay, we observed a marked difference between a CpG-free and an unmodified transgene: the CpG-free transgene resumed transcription and did not exhibit markers of heterochromatin whereas the unmodified transgene remained silenced. These data indicate that methylation of CpG residues conferred epigenetic memory in this system. These results also suggest that replication delay, lack of histone H3 and H4 acetylation, H3-K4 methylation, and enrichment in tri-methyl-H3-K9 are not sufficient to confer epigenetic memory. We propose that DNA methylation within transgenes serves as an intrinsic epigenetic memory to permanently silence transgenes and prevent their reactivation.

  16. Epigenetic regulation of bud dormancy events in perennial plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabino eRíos

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Release of bud dormancy in perennial plants resembles vernalization in Arabidopsis thaliana and cereals. In both cases a certain period of chilling is required for accomplishing the reproductive phase, and several transcription factors with the MADS-box domain perform a central regulatory role in these processes. The expression of DORMANCY ASSOCIATED MADS-box (DAM-related genes has been found to be up-regulated in dormant buds of numerous plant species such as poplar, raspberry, leafy spurge, blackcurrant, Japanese apricot and peach. Moreover, functional evidence suggests the involvement of DAM genes in the regulation of seasonal dormancy in peach. Recent findings highlight the presence of genome-wide epigenetic modifications related to dormancy events, and more specifically the epigenetic regulation of DAM-related genes in a similar way to FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC, a key integrator of vernalization effectors on flowering initiation in Arabidopsis. We revise the most relevant molecular and genomic contributions in the field of bud dormancy, and discuss the increasing evidence for chromatin modifications involvement in the epigenetic regulation of seasonal dormancy cycles in perennial plants.

  17. Epigenetic memory loss in aging oligodendrocytes in the corpus callosum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siming, Shen; Aixiao, Liu; Jiadong, Li; Candy, Wolubah; Patrizia, Casaccia-Bonnefil

    2008-01-01

    In this study we address the hypothesis that aging modifies the intrinsic properties of oligodendrocytes, the myelin-forming cells of the brain. According to our model, an “epigenetic memory” is stored in the chromatin of the oligodendrocyte lineage cells and is responsible for the maintenance of a mature phenotype, characterized by low levels of expression of transcriptional inhibitors. We report here an age-related decline of histone deacetylation and methylation, the molecular mechanisms responsible for the establishment and maintenance of this “epigenetic memory” of the differentiated state. We further show that lack of histone methylation and increased acetylation in mature oligodendrocytes are associated with global changes in gene expression, that include the re-expression of bHLH inhibitors (i.e. Hes5 and Id4) and precursor markers (i.e. Sox2). These changes characteristic of the “aging” oligodendrocytes can be recapitulated in vitro, by treating primary oligodendrocyte cultures with histone deacetylase inhibitors. Thus, we conclude that the “epigenetic memory loss” detected in white matter tracts of older mice induces global changes of gene expression that modify the intrinsic properties of aged oligodendrocytes and may functionally modulate the responsiveness of these cells to external stimuli. PMID:17182153

  18. Epigenetic impact of dietary isothiocyanates in cancer chemoprevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerhauser, Clarissa

    2013-07-01

    There is growing evidence that cancer chemopreventive agents including isothiocyanates (ITCs) from cruciferous vegetables target epigenetic mechanisms. The present report will summarize novel findings of ITCs on histone deacetylase activity, DNA methylation, and short noncoding microRNAs, focusing on sulforaphane (SFN) from broccoli and phenethylisothiocyanate from watercress. In a human intervention study, broccoli sprouts led to more efficient histone deacetylase inhibition in blood cells than a broccoli sprout supplement, correlating with higher levels of urinary ITC metabolites. A proteomics study with ¹⁴C-labeled ITCs revealed among others a direct interaction with histones and chromatin-modulating proteins. The well investigated Kelch-like erythroid-cell-derived protein with CNC homology-associated protein 1/nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2/antioxidant-response element pathway is both affected by and mechanistically involved in epigenetic activities of ITCs. Accordingly, reduction of oxidative stress is shown to prevent hypertension-associated global hypomethylation in rats. Combination of SFN with (-)-epigallocatechin gallate as a demethylating agent is identified as an effective approach for re-expression of estrogen receptor in hormone negative breast cancer. Induction of miR-200c by SFN prevents epithelial-mesenchymal-transition and could be relevant for prevention of metastases. The last year has identified interesting areas of ITCs affecting epigenetic mechanisms that will have implications for translational cancer (prevention) research once validated in animal studies and human intervention studies.

  19. Epigenetic mechanisms and memory strength: a comparative study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Federman, Noel; Zalcman, Gisela; de la Fuente, Verónica; Fustiñana, Maria Sol; Romano, Arturo

    2014-01-01

    Memory consolidation requires de novo mRNA and protein synthesis. Transcriptional activation is controlled by transcription factors, their cofactors and repressors. Cofactors and repressors regulate gene expression by interacting with basal transcription machinery, remodeling chromatin structure and/or chemically modifying histones. Acetylation is the most studied epigenetic mechanism of histones modifications related to gene expression. This process is regulated by histone acetylases (HATs) and histone deacetylases (HDACs). More than 5 years ago, we began a line of research about the role of histone acetylation during memory consolidation. Here we review our work, presenting evidence about the critical role of this epigenetic mechanism during consolidation of context-signal memory in the crab Neohelice granulata, as well as during consolidation of novel object recognition memory in the mouse Mus musculus. Our evidence demonstrates that histone acetylation is a key mechanism in memory consolidation, functioning as a distinctive molecular feature of strong memories. Furthermore, we found that the strength of a memory can be characterized by its persistence or its resistance to extinction. Besides, we found that the role of this epigenetic mechanism regulating gene expression only in the formation of strongest memories is evolutionarily conserved. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Epigenetic inheritance, prions and evolution

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The field of epigenetics has grown explosively in the past two decades or so. As currently defined, epigenetics deals with heritable, metastable and usually reversible changes that do not involve alterations in DNA sequence, but alter the way that information encoded inDNAis utilized.The bulk of current research in ...

  1. Evolutionary significance of epigenetic variation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Richards, C.L.; Verhoeven, K.J.F.; Bossdorf, O.; Wendel, J.F.; Greilhuber, J.; Dolezel, J.; Leitch, I.J.

    2012-01-01

    Several chapters in this volume demonstrate how epigenetic work at the molecular level over the last few decades has revolutionized our understanding of genome function and developmental biology. However, epigenetic processes not only further our understanding of variation and regulation at the

  2. Overview of the "epigenetic end points in toxicologic pathology and relevance to human health" session of the 2014 Society Of Toxicologic Pathology Annual Symposium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoenerhoff, Mark J; Hartke, James

    2015-01-01

    The theme of the Society of Toxicologic Pathology 2014 Annual Symposium was "Translational Pathology: Relevance of Toxicologic Pathology to Human Health." The 5th session focused on epigenetic end points in biology, toxicity, and carcinogenicity, and how those end points are relevant to human exposures. This overview highlights the various presentations in this session, discussing integration of epigenetics end points in toxicologic pathology studies, investigating the role of epigenetics in product safety assessment, epigenetic changes in cancers, methodologies to detect them, and potential therapies, chromatin remodeling in development and disease, and epigenomics and the microbiome. The purpose of this overview is to discuss the application of epigenetics to toxicologic pathology and its utility in preclinical or mechanistic based safety, efficacy, and carcinogenicity studies. © 2014 by The Author(s).

  3. Putative molecular mechanism underlying sperm chromatin remodelling is regulated by reproductive hormones

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gill-Sharma Manjeet Kaur

    2012-12-01

    transcriptome and proteome’, thereby stalling the replacement of ‘dynamic’ histones with ‘inert’ protamines, and altering the epigenetic state of condensed sperm chromatin. The inappropriately condensed chromatin affected the sperm chromatin cytoarchitecture, evident from subtle ultrastructural changes in the nuclei of immature caput epididymal sperm of CPA- or FD-treated rats, incubated in vitro with dithiothreitol.

  4. Epigenetic alterations differ in phenotypically distinct human neuroblastoma cell lines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yang, Qiwei; Tian, Yufeng; Ostler, Kelly R; Chlenski, Alexandre; Guerrero, Lisa J; Salwen, Helen R; Godley, Lucy A; Cohn, Susan L

    2010-01-01

    Epigenetic aberrations and a CpG island methylator phenotype have been shown to be associated with poor outcomes in children with neuroblastoma (NB). Seven cancer related genes (THBS-1, CASP8, HIN-1, TIG-1, BLU, SPARC, and HIC-1) that have been shown to have epigenetic changes in adult cancers and play important roles in the regulation of angiogenesis, tumor growth, and apoptosis were analyzed to investigate the role epigenetic alterations play in determining NB phenotype. Two NB cell lines (tumorigenic LA1-55n and non-tumorigenic LA1-5s) that differ in their ability to form colonies in soft agar and tumors in nude mice were used. Quantitative RNA expression analyses were performed on seven genes in LA1-5s, LA1-55n and 5-Aza-dC treated LA1-55n NB cell lines. The methylation status around THBS-1, HIN-1, TIG-1 and CASP8 promoters was examined using methylation specific PCR. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assay was used to examine histone modifications along the THBS-1 promoter. Luciferase assay was used to determine THBS-1 promoter activity. Cell proliferation assay was used to examine the effect of 5-Aza-dC on NB cell growth. The soft agar assay was used to determine the tumorigenicity. Promoter methylation values for THBS-1, HIN-1, TIG-1, and CASP8 were higher in LA1-55n cells compared to LA1-5s cells. Consistent with the promoter methylation status, lower levels of gene expression were detected in the LA1-55n cells. Histone marks associated with repressive chromatin states (H3K9Me3, H3K27Me3, and H3K4Me3) were identified in the THBS-1 promoter region in the LA1-55n cells, but not the LA1-5s cells. In contrast, the three histone codes associated with an active chromatin state (acetyl H3, acetyl H4, and H3K4Me3) were present in the THBS-1 promoter region in LA1-5s cells, but not the LA1-55n cells, suggesting that an accessible chromatin structure is important for THBS-1 expression. We also show that 5-Aza-dC treatment of LA1-55n cells alters the DNA methylation

  5. Models of epigenetics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alsing, Anne

    -1, relies on di usible factors for the maintenance of memory over cell divisions, another way of staying devoted to a distinct state is marking the activity state of a gene on its DNA. In eukaryotes such marks are known, either as methylation of cytosine bases or modi cations of the nucleosomes that wind...... the DNA into chromatin structures. Once established the patterns may be conserved over many cell generations. The self-sustainable nature of the patterns is attributed to the cis-acting mechanism of read-write enzymes that facilitates the same histone modi cations as they recognize. Developing olfactory...... neurons become devoted to expression of one version of hundreds of olfactory receptor genes present in the mammalian genome. Ol factory receptor genes are very similar in sequence and upstream promoter regions. This disqualify simple gene regulation by a realistic pool of di usible trans-acting factors...

  6. Self-assembled FUS binds active chromatin and regulates gene transcription

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Liuqing; Gal, Jozsef; Chen, Jing; Zhu, Haining

    2014-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease. Fused in sarcoma (FUS) is a DNA/RNA binding protein and mutations in FUS cause a subset of familial ALS. Most ALS mutations are clustered in the C-terminal nuclear localization sequence of FUS and consequently lead to the accumulation of protein inclusions in the cytoplasm. It remains debatable whether loss of FUS normal function in the nucleus or gain of toxic function in the cytoplasm plays a more critical role in the ALS etiology. Moreover, the physiological function of FUS in the nucleus remains to be fully understood. In this study, we found that a significant portion of nuclear FUS was bound to active chromatin and that the ALS mutations dramatically decreased FUS chromatin binding ability. Functionally, the chromatin binding is required for FUS transcription activation, but not for alternative splicing regulation. The N-terminal QGSY (glutamine-glycine-serine-tyrosine)-rich region (amino acids 1–164) mediates FUS self-assembly in the nucleus of mammalian cells and the self-assembly is essential for its chromatin binding and transcription activation. In addition, RNA binding is also required for FUS self-assembly and chromatin binding. Together, our results suggest a functional assembly of FUS in the nucleus under physiological conditions, which is different from the cytoplasmic inclusions. The ALS mutations can cause loss of function in the nucleus by disrupting this assembly and chromatin binding. PMID:25453086

  7. Theory for the stability and regulation of epigenetic landscapes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Micheelsen, Mille A; Mitarai, Namiko; Sneppen, Kim; Dodd, Ian B

    2010-01-01

    Cells can often choose among several stably heritable phenotypes. Examples are the expressions of genes in eukaryotic cells where long chromosomal regions can adopt persistent and heritable silenced or active states that may be associated with positive feedback in dynamic modification of nucleosomes. We generalize this mechanism in terms of bistability associated with valleys in an epigenetic landscape. A transfer matrix method was used to rigorously follow the system through the disruptive process of cell division. This combined treatment of noisy dynamics both between and during cell division provides an efficient way to calculate the stability of alternative states in a broad range of epigenetic systems

  8. The political implications of epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robison, Shea K

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetics, which is just beginning to attract public attention and policy discussion, challenges conventional understanding of gene-environment interaction and intergenerational inheritance and perhaps much more besides. Does epigenetics challenge modern political ideologies? I analyzed the narratives of obesity and epigenetics recently published in the more liberal New York Times and the more conservative Wall Street Journal. For the years 2010 through 2014, 50 articles on obesity and 29 articles on epigenetics were identified, and elements in their causal narratives were quantitatively analyzed using a well described narrative policy framework. The narratives on obesity aligned with the two newspapers' reputed ideologies. However, the narratives on epigenetics aligned with neither ideology but freely mixed liberal and conservative elements. This small study may serve as a starting point for broader studies of epigenetics as it comes to affect political ideologies and, in turn, public policies. The narrative mix reported here could yet prove vulnerable to ideological capture, or, more optimistically, could portend the emergence of a "third-way" narrative using epigenetics to question atomistic individualism and allowing for less divisiveness in public-health domains such as obesity.

  9. Extensive Variation in Chromatin States Across Humans

    KAUST Repository

    Kasowski, M.

    2013-10-17

    The majority of disease-associated variants lie outside protein-coding regions, suggesting a link between variation in regulatory regions and disease predisposition. We studied differences in chromatin states using five histone modifications, cohesin, and CTCF in lymphoblastoid lines from 19 individuals of diverse ancestry. We found extensive signal variation in regulatory regions, which often switch between active and repressed states across individuals. Enhancer activity is particularly diverse among individuals, whereas gene expression remains relatively stable. Chromatin variability shows genetic inheritance in trios, correlates with genetic variation and population divergence, and is associated with disruptions of transcription factor binding motifs. Overall, our results provide insights into chromatin variation among humans.

  10. Tandem Affinity Purification Approach Coupled to Mass Spectrometry to Identify Post-translational Modifications of Histones Associated with Chromatin-Binding Proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beyer, Sophie; Robin, Philippe; Ait-Si-Ali, Slimane

    2017-01-01

    Protein purification by tandem affinity purification (TAP)-tag coupled to mass spectrometry analysis is usually used to reveal protein complex composition. Here we describe a TAP-tag purification of chromatin-bound proteins along with associated nucleosomes, which allow exhaustive identification of protein partners. Moreover, this method allows exhaustive identification of the post-translational modifications (PTMs) of the associated histones. Thus, in addition to partner characterization, this approach reveals the associated epigenetic landscape that can shed light on the function and properties of the studied chromatin-bound protein.

  11. [Schizophrenia, environment and epigenetics].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Must, Anita; Janka, Zoltan; Horvath, Szatmar

    2011-12-01

    Psychotic, cognitive and affective symptoms defining schizophrenia may, though much less severe, manifest themselves in up to 10 to 20% of the general population. What explains the fact that in certain cases the symptoms require even constant medical supervision, while others are capable of living a normal life within social conventions? Which factors lead to the transition of mild, subclinical manifestations and vulnerability indicators towards the outburst of one of the most severe and depriving mental disorders? Genetic susceptibility is undoubtedly crucial. More recent research findings emphasize the modifying effect of specific environmental factors on gene expression. The gene-environment interplay may induce so-called epigenetic alterations which may manifest themselves over several generations. Future integrative, multi-dimensional and flexible schizophrenia research approaches focusing on the identification of neurobiological and cognitive outcomes are much needed to understand disease vulnerability, susceptibility mechanisms, periods and interactions. Research methods may differ, but our aim is common - establishing more effective diagnostic and therapeutic interventions.

  12. Sex-specific chromatin landscapes in an ultra-compact chordate genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navratilova, Pavla; Danks, Gemma Barbara; Long, Abby; Butcher, Stephen; Manak, John Robert; Thompson, Eric M

    2017-01-01

    In multicellular organisms, epigenome dynamics are associated with transitions in the cell cycle, development, germline specification, gametogenesis and inheritance. Evolutionarily, regulatory space has increased in complex metazoans to accommodate these functions. In tunicates, the sister lineage to vertebrates, we examine epigenome adaptations to strong secondary genome compaction, sex chromosome evolution and cell cycle modes. Across the 70 MB Oikopleura dioica genome, we profiled 19 histone modifications, and RNA polymerase II, CTCF and p300 occupancies, to define chromatin states within two homogeneous tissues with distinct cell cycle modes: ovarian endocycling nurse nuclei and mitotically proliferating germ nuclei in testes. Nurse nuclei had active chromatin states similar to other metazoan epigenomes, with large domains of operon-associated transcription, a general lack of heterochromatin, and a possible role of Polycomb PRC2 in dosage compensation. Testis chromatin states reflected transcriptional activity linked to spermatogenesis and epigenetic marks that have been associated with establishment of transgenerational inheritance in other organisms. We also uncovered an unusual chromatin state specific to the Y-chromosome, which combined active and heterochromatic histone modifications on specific transposable elements classes, perhaps involved in regulating their activity. Compacted regulatory space in this tunicate genome is accompanied by reduced heterochromatin and chromatin state domain widths. Enhancers, promoters and protein-coding genes have conserved epigenomic features, with adaptations to the organization of a proportion of genes in operon units. We further identified features specific to sex chromosomes, cell cycle modes, germline identity and dosage compensation, and unusual combinations of histone PTMs with opposing consensus functions.

  13. Mosaic epigenetic dysregulation of ectodermal cells in autism spectrum disorder.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esther R Berko

    Full Text Available DNA mutational events are increasingly being identified in autism spectrum disorder (ASD, but the potential additional role of dysregulation of the epigenome in the pathogenesis of the condition remains unclear. The epigenome is of interest as a possible mediator of environmental effects during development, encoding a cellular memory reflected by altered function of progeny cells. Advanced maternal age (AMA is associated with an increased risk of having a child with ASD for reasons that are not understood. To explore whether AMA involves covert aneuploidy or epigenetic dysregulation leading to ASD in the offspring, we tested a homogeneous ectodermal cell type from 47 individuals with ASD compared with 48 typically developing (TD controls born to mothers of ≥35 years, using a quantitative genome-wide DNA methylation assay. We show that DNA methylation patterns are dysregulated in ectodermal cells in these individuals, having accounted for confounding effects due to subject age, sex and ancestral haplotype. We did not find mosaic aneuploidy or copy number variability to occur at differentially-methylated regions in these subjects. Of note, the loci with distinctive DNA methylation were found at genes expressed in the brain and encoding protein products significantly enriched for interactions with those produced by known ASD-causing genes, representing a perturbation by epigenomic dysregulation of the same networks compromised by DNA mutational mechanisms. The results indicate the presence of a mosaic subpopulation of epigenetically-dysregulated, ectodermally-derived cells in subjects with ASD. The epigenetic dysregulation observed in these ASD subjects born to older mothers may be associated with aging parental gametes, environmental influences during embryogenesis or could be the consequence of mutations of the chromatin regulatory genes increasingly implicated in ASD. The results indicate that epigenetic dysregulatory mechanisms may complement

  14. Aging epigenetics: causes and consequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huidobro, Covadonga; Fernandez, Agustin F; Fraga, Mario F

    2013-01-01

    Growth and development of higher organisms are regulated by the orchestrated change of epigenetic marks over time. In addition, there is also an epigenetic variation without any apparent role in development that is thought to be the result of the stochastic accumulation of epigenetic errors. The process depends on genetic and environmental factors and, when it takes place in adult stem cells, it could play an important role in aging, although the underlying molecular mechanisms are still largely unknown. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Epigenetics and Evolution: Transposons and the Stochastic Epigenetic Modification Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Branciamore

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available In addition to genetic variation, epigenetic variation and transposons can greatly affect the evolutionary fitnesses landscape and gene expression. Previously we proposed a mathematical treatment of a general epigenetic variation model that we called Stochastic Epigenetic Modification (SEM model. In this study we follow up with a special case, the Transposon Silencing Model (TSM, with, once again, emphasis on quantitative treatment. We have investigated the evolutionary effects of epigenetic changes due to transposon (T insertions; in particular, we have considered a typical gene locus A and postulated that (i the expression level of gene A depends on the epigenetic state (active or inactive of a cis- located transposon element T, (ii stochastic variability in the epigenetic silencing of T occurs only in a short window of opportunity during development, (iii the epigenetic state is then stable during further development, and (iv the epigenetic memory is fully reset at each generation. We develop the model using two complementary approaches: a standard analytical population genetics framework (di usion equations and Monte-Carlo simulations. Both approaches led to similar estimates for the probability of fixation and time of fixation of locus TA with initial frequency P in a randomly mating diploid population of effective size Ne. We have ascertained the e ect that ρ, the probability of transposon Modification during the developmental window, has on the population (species. One of our principal conclusions is that as ρ increases, the pattern of fixation of the combined TA locus goes from "neutral" to "dominant" to "over-dominant". We observe that, under realistic values of ρ, epigenetic Modifications can provide an e cient mechanism for more rapid fixation of transposons and cis-located gene alleles. The results obtained suggest that epigenetic silencing, even if strictly transient (being reset at each generation, can still have signi cant

  16. An update on the epigenetics of psychotic diseases and autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdolmaleky, Hamid Mostafavi; Zhou, Jin-Rong; Thiagalingam, Sam

    2015-01-01

    The examination of potential roles of epigenetic alterations in the pathogenesis of psychotic diseases have become an essential alternative in recent years as genetic studies alone are yet to uncover major gene(s) for psychosis. Here, we describe the current state of knowledge from the gene-specific and genome-wide studies of postmortem brain and blood cells indicating that aberrant DNA methylation, histone modifications and dysregulation of micro-RNAs are linked to the pathogenesis of mental diseases. There is also strong evidence supporting that all classes of psychiatric drugs modulate diverse features of the epigenome. While comprehensive environmental and genetic/epigenetic studies are uncovering the origins, and the key genes/pathways affected in psychotic diseases, characterizing the epigenetic effects of psychiatric drugs may help to design novel therapies in psychiatry.

  17. Phospho switch triggers Brd4 chromatin binding and activator recruitment for gene-specific targeting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Shwu-Yuan; Lee, A-Young; Lai, Hsien-Tsung; Zhang, Hong; Chiang, Cheng-Ming

    2013-03-07

    Bromodomain-containing protein 4 (Brd4) is an epigenetic reader and transcriptional regulator recently identified as a cancer therapeutic target for acute myeloid leukemia, multiple myeloma, and Burkitt's lymphoma. Although chromatin targeting is a crucial function of Brd4, there is little understanding of how bromodomains that bind acetylated histones are regulated, nor how the gene-specific activity of Brd4 is determined. Via interaction screen and domain mapping, we identified p53 as a functional partner of Brd4. Interestingly, Brd4 association with p53 is modulated by casein kinase II (CK2)-mediated phosphorylation of a conserved acidic region in Brd4 that selectively contacts either a juxtaposed bromodomain or an adjacent basic region to dictate the ability of Brd4 binding to chromatin and also the recruitment of p53 to regulated promoters. The unmasking of bromodomains and activator recruitment, concurrently triggered by the CK2 phospho switch, provide an intriguing mechanism for gene-specific targeting by a universal epigenetic reader. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Chromatin Pioneers | Center for Cancer Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taking advantage of their ability to explore provocative ideas, NCI investigators pioneered the study of chromatin to demonstrate its functional importance and lay the groundwork for understanding its role in cancer and other diseases.

  19. Twin methodology in epigenetic studies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tan, Qihua; Christiansen, Lene; von Bornemann Hjelmborg, Jacob

    2015-01-01

    of diseases to molecular phenotypes in functional genomics especially in epigenetics, a thriving field of research that concerns the environmental regulation of gene expression through DNA methylation, histone modification, microRNA and long non-coding RNA expression, etc. The application of the twin method...... to molecular phenotypes offers new opportunities to study the genetic (nature) and environmental (nurture) contributions to epigenetic regulation of gene activity during developmental, ageing and disease processes. Besides the classical twin model, the case co-twin design using identical twins discordant...... for a trait or disease is becoming a popular and powerful design for epigenome-wide association study in linking environmental exposure to differential epigenetic regulation and to disease status while controlling for individual genetic make-up. It can be expected that novel uses of twin methods in epigenetic...

  20. Epigenetic inheritance, prions and evolution

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Johannes Manjrekar

    2017-07-11

    classical' TEI phenomena and their possible implications for evolution. The review then focusses on a less-discussed, unique kind of protein-only epigenetic inheritance mediated by prions. Much remains to be learnt about the ...

  1. Genome-wide identification of chromatin-enriched RNA reveals that unspliced dentin matrix protein-1 mRNA regulates cell proliferation in squamous cell carcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Shigeki; Hoshino, Hiroaki; Yoshida, Kazuma; Nakanishi, Jun; Tsuchiya-Hirata, Shizu; Kobuke, Seiji; Haruyama, Naoto; Nishimura, Fusanori; Shiba, Hideki

    2018-01-15

    Chromatin-enriched noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) have emerged as key molecules in epigenetic processes by interacting with chromatin-associated proteins. Recently, protein-coding mRNA genes have been reported to be chromatin-tethered, similar with ncRNA. However, very little is known about whether chromatin-enriched mRNA is involved in the chromatin modification process. Here, we comprehensively examined chromatin-enriched RNA in squamous cell carcinoma (SQCC) cells by RNA subcellular localization analysis, which was a combination of RNA fractionation and RNA-seq. We identified 11 mRNAs as highly chromatin-enriched RNAs. Among these, we focused on the dentin matrix protein-1 (DMP-1) gene because its expression in SQCC cells has not been reported. Furthermore, we clarified that DMP-1 mRNA was retained in chromatin in its unspliced form in SQCC in vitro and in vivo. As the inhibition of the unspliced DMP-1 mRNA (unspDMP-1) expression resulted in decreased cellular proliferation in SQCC cells, we performed ChIP-qPCR to identify cell cycle-related genes whose expression was epigenetically modified by unspDMP-1, and found that the CDKN1B promoter became active in SQCC cells by inhibiting unspDMP-1 expression. This result was further validated by the increased CDKN1B gene expression in the cells treated with siRNA for unspDMP-1 and by restoration of the decreased cellular proliferation rate by simultaneously inhibiting CDKN1B expression in SQCC cells. Further, to examine whether unspDMP-1 was able to associate with the CDKN1B promoter region, SQCC cells stably expressing PP7-mCherry fusion protein were transiently transfected with the unspDMP-1 fused to 24 repeats of the PP7 RNA stem loop (unspDMP-1-24xPP7) and we found that unspDMP-1-24xPP7 was efficiently precipitated with the antibody against mCherry and was significantly enriched in the CDKN1B promoter region. Thus, unspDMP-1 is a novel chromatin-enriched RNA that epigenetically regulates cellular proliferation of SQCC

  2. Marek's disease virus infection induces widespread differential chromatin marks in inbred chicken lines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitra, Apratim; Luo, Juan; Zhang, Huanming; Cui, Kairong; Zhao, Keji; Song, Jiuzhou

    2012-10-16

    Marek's disease (MD) is a neoplastic disease in chickens caused by the MD virus (MDV). Successful vaccine development against MD has resulted in increased virulence of MDV and the understanding of genetic resistance to the disease is, therefore, crucial to long-term control strategies. Also, epigenetic factors are believed to be one of the major determinants of disease response. Here, we carried out comprehensive analyses of the epigenetic landscape induced by MDV, utilizing genome-wide histone H3 lysine 4 and lysine 27 trimethylation maps from chicken lines with varying resistance to MD. Differential chromatin marks were observed on genes previously implicated in the disease such as MX1 and CTLA-4 and also on genes reported in other cancers including IGF2BP1 and GAL. We detected bivalent domains on immune-related transcriptional regulators BCL6, CITED2 and EGR1, which underwent dynamic changes in both lines as a result of MDV infection. In addition, putative roles for GAL in the mechanism of MD progression were revealed. Our results confirm the presence of widespread epigenetic differences induced by MD in chicken lines with different levels of genetic resistance. A majority of observed epigenetic changes were indicative of increased levels of viral infection in the susceptible line symptomatic of lowered immunocompetence in these birds caused by early cytolytic infection. The GAL system that has known anti-proliferative effects in other cancers is also revealed to be potentially involved in MD progression. Our study provides further insight into the mechanisms of MD progression while revealing a complex landscape of epigenetic regulatory mechanisms that varies depending on host factors.

  3. Marek’s disease virus infection induces widespread differential chromatin marks in inbred chicken lines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mitra Apratim

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Marek’s disease (MD is a neoplastic disease in chickens caused by the MD virus (MDV. Successful vaccine development against MD has resulted in increased virulence of MDV and the understanding of genetic resistance to the disease is, therefore, crucial to long-term control strategies. Also, epigenetic factors are believed to be one of the major determinants of disease response. Results Here, we carried out comprehensive analyses of the epigenetic landscape induced by MDV, utilizing genome-wide histone H3 lysine 4 and lysine 27 trimethylation maps from chicken lines with varying resistance to MD. Differential chromatin marks were observed on genes previously implicated in the disease such as MX1 and CTLA-4 and also on genes reported in other cancers including IGF2BP1 and GAL. We detected bivalent domains on immune-related transcriptional regulators BCL6, CITED2 and EGR1, which underwent dynamic changes in both lines as a result of MDV infection. In addition, putative roles for GAL in the mechanism of MD progression were revealed. Conclusion Our results confirm the presence of widespread epigenetic differences induced by MD in chicken lines with different levels of genetic resistance. A majority of observed epigenetic changes were indicative of increased levels of viral infection in the susceptible line symptomatic of lowered immunocompetence in these birds caused by early cytolytic infection. The GAL system that has known anti-proliferative effects in other cancers is also revealed to be potentially involved in MD progression. Our study provides further insight into the mechanisms of MD progression while revealing a complex landscape of epigenetic regulatory mechanisms that varies depending on host factors.

  4. Epigenetic Editing: targeted rewriting of epigenetic marks to modulate expression of selected target genes.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Groote, M.L.; Verschure, P.J.; Rots, M.G.

    2012-01-01

    Despite significant advances made in epigenetic research in recent decades, many questions remain unresolved, especially concerning cause and consequence of epigenetic marks with respect to gene expression modulation (GEM). Technologies allowing the targeting of epigenetic enzymes to predetermined

  5. Epigenetic Editing : targeted rewriting of epigenetic marks to modulate expression of selected target genes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Groote, Marloes L.; Verschure, Pernette J.; Rots, Marianne G.

    2012-01-01

    Despite significant advances made in epigenetic research in recent decades, many questions remain unresolved, especially concerning cause and consequence of epigenetic marks with respect to gene expression modulation (GEM). Technologies allowing the targeting of epigenetic enzymes to predetermined

  6. Epigenetic regulation of persistent pain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, Guang; Ren, Ke; Dubner, Ronald

    2014-01-01

    Persistent or chronic pain is tightly associated with various environmental changes and linked to abnormal gene expression within cells processing nociceptive signaling. Epigenetic regulation governs gene expression in response to environmental cues. Recent animal model and clinical studies indicate that epigenetic regulation plays an important role in the development/maintenance of persistent pain and, possibly the transition of acute pain to chronic pain, thus shedding light in a direction for development of new therapeutics for persistent pain. PMID:24948399

  7. Epigenetic dysregulation in chronic myeloid leukaemia: A myriad of mechanisms and therapeutic options.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koschmieder, Steffen; Vetrie, David

    2017-08-02

    The onset of global epigenetic changes in chromatin that drive tumor proliferation and heterogeneity is a hallmark of many forms of cancer. Identifying the epigenetic mechanisms that govern these changes and developing therapeutic approaches to modulate them, is a well-established avenue pursued in translational cancer medicine. Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) arises clonally when a hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) acquires the capacity to produce the constitutively active tyrosine kinase BCR-ABL1 fusion protein which drives tumor development. Treatment with tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKI) that target BCR-ABL1 has been transformative in CML management but it does not lead to cure in the vast majority of patients. Thus novel therapeutic approaches are required and these must target changes to biological pathways that are aberrant in CML - including those that occur when epigenetic mechanisms are altered. These changes may be due to alterations in DNA or histones, their biochemical modifications and requisite 'writer' proteins, or to dysregulation of various types of non-coding RNAs that collectively function as modulators of transcriptional control and DNA integrity. Here, we review the evidence for subverted epigenetic mechanisms in CML and how these impact on a diverse set of biological pathways, on disease progression, prognosis and drug resistance. We will also discuss recent progress towards developing epigenetic therapies that show promise to improve CML patient care and may lead to improved cure rates. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  8. ChIP-seq in studying epigenetic mechanisms of disease and promoting precision medicine: progresses and future directions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Huihuang; Tian, Shulan; Slager, Susan L; Sun, Zhifu

    2016-09-01

    Chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by sequencing (ChIP-seq) is widely used for mapping histone modifications, histone proteins, chromatin regulators, transcription factors and other DNA-binding proteins. It has played a significant role in our understanding of disease mechanisms and in exploring epigenetic changes for potential clinical applications. However, the conventional protocol requires large amounts of starting material and does not quantify the actual occupancy, limiting its applications in clinical settings. Herein we summarize the latest progresses in utilizing ChIP-seq to link epigenetic alterations to disease initiation and progression, and the implications in precision medicine. We provide an update on the newly developed ChIP-seq protocols, especially those suitable for scare clinical samples. Technical and analytical challenges are outlined together with recommendations for improvement. Finally, future directions in expediting ChIP-seq use in clinic are discussed.

  9. Epigenetics across the human lifespan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanherkar, Riya R.; Bhatia-Dey, Naina; Csoka, Antonei B.

    2014-01-01

    Epigenetics has the potential to explain various biological phenomena that have heretofore defied complete explication. This review describes the various types of endogenous human developmental milestones such as birth, puberty, and menopause, as well as the diverse exogenous environmental factors that influence human health, in a chronological epigenetic context. We describe the entire course of human life from periconception to death and chronologically note all of the potential internal timepoints and external factors that influence the human epigenome. Ultimately, the environment presents these various factors to the individual that influence the epigenome, and the unique epigenetic and genetic profile of each individual also modulates the specific response to these factors. During the course of human life, we are exposed to an environment that abounds with a potent and dynamic milieu capable of triggering chemical changes that activate or silence genes. There is constant interaction between the external and internal environments that is required for normal development and health maintenance as well as for influencing disease load and resistance. For example, exposure to pharmaceutical and toxic chemicals, diet, stress, exercise, and other environmental factors are capable of eliciting positive or negative epigenetic modifications with lasting effects on development, metabolism and health. These can impact the body so profoundly as to permanently alter the epigenetic profile of an individual. We also present a comprehensive new hypothesis of how these diverse environmental factors cause both direct and indirect epigenetic changes and how this knowledge can ultimately be used to improve personalized medicine. PMID:25364756

  10. Epigenetic Modifications and Diabetic Retinopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renu A. Kowluru

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Diabetic retinopathy remains one of the most debilitating chronic complications, but despite extensive research in the field, the exact mechanism(s responsible for how retina is damaged in diabetes remains ambiguous. Many metabolic pathways have been implicated in its development, and genes associated with these pathways are altered. Diabetic environment also facilitates epigenetics modifications, which can alter the gene expression without permanent changes in DNA sequence. The role of epigenetics in diabetic retinopathy is now an emerging area, and recent work has shown that genes encoding mitochondrial superoxide dismutase (Sod2 and matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9 are epigenetically modified, activates of epigenetic modification enzymes, histone lysine demethylase 1 (LSD1, and DNA methyltransferase are increased, and the micro RNAs responsible for regulating nuclear transcriptional factor and VEGF are upregulated. With the growing evidence of epigenetic modifications in diabetic retinopathy, better understanding of these modifications has potential to identify novel targets to inhibit this devastating disease. Fortunately, the inhibitors and mimics targeted towards histone modification, DNA methylation, and miRNAs are now being tried for cancer and other chronic diseases, and better understanding of the role of epigenetics in diabetic retinopathy will open the door for their possible use in combating this blinding disease.

  11. Chromatin remodeling and stem cell theory of relativity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerny, Jan; Quesenberry, Peter J

    2004-10-01

    The field of stem cell biology is currently being redefined. Stem cell (hematopoietic and non-hematopoietic) differentiation has been considered hierarchical in nature, but recent data suggest that there is no progenitor/stem cell hierarchy, but rather a reversible continuum. The stem cell (hematopoietic and non-hematopoietic) phenotype, the total differentiation capacity (hematopoietic and non-hematopoietic), gene expression as well as other stem cell functional characteristics (homing, receptor and adhesion molecule expression) vary throughout a cell-cycle transit widely. This seems to be dependent on shifting chromatin and gene expression with cell-cycle transit. The published data on DNA methylation, histone acetylation, and also RNAi, the major regulators of gene expression, conjoins very well and provides an explanation for the major issues of stem cell biology. Those features of stem cells mentioned above can be rather difficult to apprehend when a classical hierarchy biology view is applied, but they become clear and easier to understand once they are correlated with the underlining epigenetic changes. We are entering a new era of stem cell biology the era of "chromatinomics." We are one step closer to the practical use of cellular therapy for degenerative diseases.

  12. A high-resolution whole-genome map of key chromatin modifications in the adult Drosophila melanogaster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Hang; Sweeney, Sarah; Raha, Debasish; Snyder, Michael; Lin, Haifan

    2011-12-01

    Epigenetic research has been focused on cell-type-specific regulation; less is known about common features of epigenetic programming shared by diverse cell types within an organism. Here, we report a modified method for chromatin immunoprecipitation and deep sequencing (ChIP-Seq) and its use to construct a high-resolution map of the Drosophila melanogaster key histone marks, heterochromatin protein 1a (HP1a) and RNA polymerase II (polII). These factors are mapped at 50-bp resolution genome-wide and at 5-bp resolution for regulatory sequences of genes, which reveals fundamental features of chromatin modification landscape shared by major adult Drosophila cell types: the enrichment of both heterochromatic and euchromatic marks in transposons and repetitive sequences, the accumulation of HP1a at transcription start sites with stalled polII, the signatures of histone code and polII level/position around the transcriptional start sites that predict both the mRNA level and functionality of genes, and the enrichment of elongating polII within exons at splicing junctions. These features, likely conserved among diverse epigenomes, reveal general strategies for chromatin modifications.

  13. TRAIN (Transcription of Repeats Activates INterferon) in response to chromatin destabilization induced by small molecules in mammalian cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonova, Katerina; Safina, Alfiya; Nesher, Elimelech; Sandlesh, Poorva; Pratt, Rachel; Burkhart, Catherine; Lipchick, Brittany; Gitlin, Ilya; Frangou, Costakis; Koman, Igor; Wang, Jianmin; Kirsanov, Kirill; Yakubovskaya, Marianna G; Gudkov, Andrei V; Gurova, Katerina

    2018-02-05

    Cellular responses to the loss of genomic stability are well-established, while how mammalian cells respond to chromatin destabilization is largely unknown. We previously found that DNA demethylation on p53-deficient background leads to transcription of repetitive heterochromatin elements, followed by an interferon response, a phenomenon we named TRAIN (Transcription of Repeats Activates INterferon). Here, we report that curaxin, an anticancer small molecule, destabilizing nucleosomes via disruption of histone/DNA interactions, also induces TRAIN. Furthermore, curaxin inhibits oncogene-induced transformation and tumor growth in mice in an interferon-dependent manner, suggesting that anticancer activity of curaxin, previously attributed to p53-activation and NF-kappaB-inhibition, may also involve induction of interferon response to epigenetic derepression of the cellular 'repeatome'. Moreover, we observed that another type of drugs decondensing chromatin, HDAC inhibitor, also induces TRAIN. Thus, we proposed that TRAIN may be one of the mechanisms ensuring epigenetic integrity of mammalian cells via elimination of cells with desilenced chromatin. © 2018, Leonova et al.

  14. Dissecting epigenetic silencing complexity in the mouse lung cancer suppressor gene Cadm1.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stella Marie Reamon-Buettner

    Full Text Available Disease-oriented functional analysis of epigenetic factors and their regulatory mechanisms in aberrant silencing is a prerequisite for better diagnostics and therapy. Yet, the precise mechanisms are still unclear and complex, involving the interplay of several effectors including nucleosome positioning, DNA methylation, histone variants and histone modifications. We investigated the epigenetic silencing complexity in the tumor suppressor gene Cadm1 in mouse lung cancer progenitor cell lines, exhibiting promoter hypermethylation associated with transcriptional repression, but mostly unresponsive to demethylating drug treatments. After predicting nucleosome positions and transcription factor binding sites along the Cadm1 promoter, we carried out single-molecule mapping with DNA methyltransferase M.SssI, which revealed in silent promoters high nucleosome occupancy and occlusion of transcription factor binding sites. Furthermore, M.SssI maps of promoters varied within and among the different lung cancer cell lines. Chromatin analysis with micrococcal nuclease also indicated variations in nucleosome positioning to have implications in the binding of transcription factors near nucleosome borders. Chromatin immunoprecipitation showed that histone variants (H2A.Z and H3.3, and opposing histone modification marks (H3K4me3 and H3K27me3 all colocalized in the same nucleosome positions that is reminiscent of epigenetic plasticity in embryonic stem cells. Altogether, epigenetic silencing complexity in the promoter region of Cadm1 is not only defined by DNA hypermethylation, but high nucleosome occupancy, altered nucleosome positioning, and 'bivalent' histone modifications, also likely contributed in the transcriptional repression of this gene in the lung cancer cells. Our results will help define therapeutic intervention strategies using epigenetic drugs in lung cancer.

  15. Interpopulation hybridization generates meiotically stable rDNA epigenetic variants in allotetraploid Tragopogon mirus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matyášek, Roman; Dobešová, Eva; Húska, Dalibor; Ježková, Ivana; Soltis, Pamela S; Soltis, Douglas E; Kovařík, Aleš

    2016-02-01

    Uniparental silencing of 35S rRNA genes (rDNA), known as nucleolar dominance (ND), is common in interspecific hybrids. Allotetraploid Tragopogon mirus composed of Tragopogon dubius (d) and Tragopogon porrifolius (p) genomes shows highly variable ND. To examine the molecular basis of such variation, we studied the genetic and epigenetic features of rDNA homeologs in several lines derived from recently and independently formed natural populations. Inbred lines derived from T. mirus with a dominant d-rDNA homeolog transmitted this expression pattern over generations, which may explain why it is prevalent among natural populations. In contrast, lines derived from the p-rDNA dominant progenitor were meiotically unstable, frequently switching to co-dominance. Interpopulation crosses between progenitors displaying reciprocal ND resulted in d-rDNA dominance, indicating immediate suppression of p-homeologs in F1 hybrids. Original p-rDNA dominance was not restored in later generations, even in those segregants that inherited the corresponding parental rDNA genotype, thus indicating the generation of additional p-rDNA and d-rDNA epigenetic variants. Despite preserved intergenic spacer (IGS) structure, they showed altered cytosine methylation and chromatin condensation patterns, and a correlation between expression, hypomethylation of RNA Pol I promoters and chromatin decondensation was apparent. Reversion of such epigenetic variants occurred rarely, resulting in co-dominance maintained in individuals with distinct genotypes. Generally, interpopulation crosses may generate epialleles that are not present in natural populations, underlying epigenetic dynamics in young allopolyploids. We hypothesize that highly expressed variants with distinct IGS features may induce heritable epigenetic reprogramming of the partner rDNA arrays, harmonizing the expression of thousands of genes in allopolyploids. © 2015 The Authors The Plant Journal © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Mutations in the Chromatin Regulator Gene BRPF1 Cause Syndromic Intellectual Disability and Deficient Histone Acetylation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Kezhi; Rousseau, Justine; Littlejohn, Rebecca Okashah; Kiss, Courtney; Lehman, Anna; Rosenfeld, Jill A; Stumpel, Constance T R; Stegmann, Alexander P A; Robak, Laurie; Scaglia, Fernando; Nguyen, Thi Tuyet Mai; Fu, He; Ajeawung, Norbert F; Camurri, Maria Vittoria; Li, Lin; Gardham, Alice; Panis, Bianca; Almannai, Mohammed; Sacoto, Maria J Guillen; Baskin, Berivan; Ruivenkamp, Claudia; Xia, Fan; Bi, Weimin; Cho, Megan T; Potjer, Thomas P; Santen, Gijs W E; Parker, Michael J; Canham, Natalie; McKinnon, Margaret; Potocki, Lorraine; MacKenzie, Jennifer J; Roeder, Elizabeth R; Campeau, Philippe M; Yang, Xiang-Jiao

    2017-01-05

    Identification of over 500 epigenetic regulators in humans raises an interesting question regarding how chromatin dysregulation contributes to different diseases. Bromodomain and PHD finger-containing protein 1 (BRPF1) is a multivalent chromatin regulator possessing three histone-binding domains, one non-specific DNA-binding module, and several motifs for interacting with and activating three lysine acetyltransferases. Genetic analyses of fish brpf1 and mouse Brpf1 have uncovered an important role in skeletal, hematopoietic, and brain development, but it remains unclear how BRPF1 is linked to human development and disease. Here, we describe an intellectual disability disorder in ten individuals with inherited or de novo monoallelic BRPF1 mutations. Symptoms include infantile hypotonia, global developmental delay, intellectual disability, expressive language impairment, and facial dysmorphisms. Central nervous system and spinal abnormalities are also seen in some individuals. These clinical features overlap with but are not identical to those reported for persons with KAT6A or KAT6B mutations, suggesting that BRPF1 targets these two acetyltransferases and additional partners in humans. Functional assays showed that the resulting BRPF1 variants are pathogenic and impair acetylation of histone H3 at lysine 23, an abundant but poorly characterized epigenetic mark. We also found a similar deficiency in different lines of Brpf1-knockout mice. These data indicate that aberrations in the chromatin regulator gene BRPF1 cause histone H3 acetylation deficiency and a previously unrecognized intellectual disability syndrome. Copyright © 2017 American Society of Human Genetics. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Chromatin Dynamics during Lytic Infection with Herpes Simplex Virus 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conn, Kristen L.; Schang, Luis M.

    2013-01-01

    Latent HSV-1 genomes are chromatinized with silencing marks. Since 2004, however, there has been an apparent inconsistency in the studies of the chromatinization of the HSV-1 genomes in lytically infected cells. Nuclease protection and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays suggested that the genomes were not regularly chromatinized, having only low histone occupancy. However, the chromatin modifications associated with transcribed and non-transcribed HSV-1 genes were those associated with active or repressed transcription, respectively. Moreover, the three critical HSV-1 transcriptional activators all had the capability to induce chromatin remodelling, and interacted with critical chromatin modifying enzymes. Depletion or overexpression of some, but not all, chromatin modifying proteins affected HSV-1 transcription, but often in unexpected manners. Since 2010, it has become clear that both cellular and HSV-1 chromatins are highly dynamic in infected cells. These dynamics reconcile the weak interactions between HSV-1 genomes and chromatin proteins, detected by nuclease protection and chromatin immunoprecipitation, with the proposed regulation of HSV-1 gene expression by chromatin, supported by the marks in the chromatin in the viral genomes and the abilities of the HSV-1 transcription activators to modulate chromatin. It also explains the sometimes unexpected results of interventions to modulate chromatin remodelling activities in infected cells. PMID:23863878

  18. One-carbon metabolism and epigenetics: understanding the specificity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mentch, Samantha J; Locasale, Jason W

    2016-01-01

    One-carbon metabolism is a metabolic network that integrates nutrient status from the environment to yield multiple biological functions. The folate and methionine cycles generate S-adenosylmethionine (SAM), which is the universal methyl donor for methylation reactions, including histone and DNA methylation. Histone methylation is a crucial part of the epigenetic code and plays diverse roles in the establishment of chromatin states that mediate the regulation of gene expression. The activities of histone methyltransferases (HMTs) are dependent on intracellular levels of SAM, which fluctuate based on cellular nutrient availability, providing a link between cell metabolism and histone methylation. Here we discuss the biochemical properties of HMTs, their role in gene regulation, and the connection to cellular metabolism. Our emphasis is on understanding the specificity of this intriguing link. © 2015 New York Academy of Sciences.

  19. DNA immunoprecipitation semiconductor sequencing (DIP-SC-seq) as a rapid method to generate genome wide epigenetic signatures

    OpenAIRE

    Thomson, John P.; Fawkes, Angie; Ottaviano, Raffaele; Hunter, Jennifer M.; Shukla, Ruchi; Mjoseng, Heidi K.; Clark, Richard; Coutts, Audrey; Murphy, Lee; Meehan, Richard R.

    2015-01-01

    Modification of DNA resulting in 5-methylcytosine (5 mC) or 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) has been shown to influence the local chromatin environment and affect transcription. Although recent advances in next generation sequencing technology allow researchers to map epigenetic modifications across the genome, such experiments are often time-consuming and cost prohibitive. Here we present a rapid and cost effective method of generating genome wide DNA modification maps utilising commercially ...

  20. Towards cracking the epigenetic code using a combination of high-throughput epigenomics and quantitative mass spectrometry-based proteomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stunnenberg, Hendrik G; Vermeulen, Michiel

    2011-07-01

    High-throughput genomic sequencing and quantitative mass spectrometry (MS)-based proteomics technology have recently emerged as powerful tools, increasing our understanding of chromatin structure and function. Both of these approaches require substantial investments and expertise in terms of instrumentation, experimental methodology, bioinformatics, and data interpretation and are, therefore, usually applied independently from each other by dedicated research groups. However, when applied reiteratively in the context of epigenetics research these approaches are strongly synergistic in nature. Copyright © 2011 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Two Mutually Exclusive Local Chromatin States Drive Efficient V(DJ Recombination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel J. Bolland

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Variable (V, diversity (D, and joining (J (V(DJ recombination is the first determinant of antigen receptor diversity. Understanding how recombination is regulated requires a comprehensive, unbiased readout of V gene usage. We have developed VDJ sequencing (VDJ-seq, a DNA-based next-generation-sequencing technique that quantitatively profiles recombination products. We reveal a 200-fold range of recombination efficiency among recombining V genes in the primary mouse Igh repertoire. We used machine learning to integrate these data with local chromatin profiles to identify combinatorial patterns of epigenetic features that associate with active VH gene recombination. These features localize downstream of VH genes and are excised by recombination, revealing a class of cis-regulatory element that governs recombination, distinct from expression. We detect two mutually exclusive chromatin signatures at these elements, characterized by CTCF/RAD21 and PAX5/IRF4, which segregate with the evolutionary history of associated VH genes. Thus, local chromatin signatures downstream of VH genes provide an essential layer of regulation that determines recombination efficiency.

  2. Small Molecules Modulate Chromatin Accessibility to Promote NEUROG2-Mediated Fibroblast-to-Neuron Reprogramming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Derek K. Smith

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Pro-neural transcription factors and small molecules can induce the reprogramming of fibroblasts into functional neurons; however, the immediate-early molecular events that catalyze this conversion have not been well defined. We previously demonstrated that neurogenin 2 (NEUROG2, forskolin (F, and dorsomorphin (D can reprogram fibroblasts into functional neurons with high efficiency. Here, we used this model to define the genetic and epigenetic events that initiate an acquisition of neuronal identity. We demonstrate that NEUROG2 is a pioneer factor, FD enhances chromatin accessibility and H3K27 acetylation, and synergistic transcription activated by these factors is essential to successful reprogramming. CREB1 promotes neuron survival and acts with NEUROG2 to upregulate SOX4, which co-activates NEUROD1 and NEUROD4. In addition, SOX4 targets SWI/SNF subunits and SOX4 knockdown results in extensive loss of open chromatin and abolishes reprogramming. Applying these insights, adult human glioblastoma cell and skin fibroblast reprogramming can be improved using SOX4 or chromatin-modifying chemicals.

  3. Two Mutually Exclusive Local Chromatin States Drive Efficient V(D)J Recombination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolland, Daniel J; Koohy, Hashem; Wood, Andrew L; Matheson, Louise S; Krueger, Felix; Stubbington, Michael J T; Baizan-Edge, Amanda; Chovanec, Peter; Stubbs, Bryony A; Tabbada, Kristina; Andrews, Simon R; Spivakov, Mikhail; Corcoran, Anne E

    2016-06-14

    Variable (V), diversity (D), and joining (J) (V(D)J) recombination is the first determinant of antigen receptor diversity. Understanding how recombination is regulated requires a comprehensive, unbiased readout of V gene usage. We have developed VDJ sequencing (VDJ-seq), a DNA-based next-generation-sequencing technique that quantitatively profiles recombination products. We reveal a 200-fold range of recombination efficiency among recombining V genes in the primary mouse Igh repertoire. We used machine learning to integrate these data with local chromatin profiles to identify combinatorial patterns of epigenetic features that associate with active VH gene recombination. These features localize downstream of VH genes and are excised by recombination, revealing a class of cis-regulatory element that governs recombination, distinct from expression. We detect two mutually exclusive chromatin signatures at these elements, characterized by CTCF/RAD21 and PAX5/IRF4, which segregate with the evolutionary history of associated VH genes. Thus, local chromatin signatures downstream of VH genes provide an essential layer of regulation that determines recombination efficiency. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Bivalent Chromatin Marks Developmental Regulatory Genes in the Mouse Embryonic Germline In Vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Sachs

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Developmental regulatory genes have both activating (H3K4me3 and repressive (H3K27me3 histone modifications in embryonic stem cells (ESCs. This bivalent configuration is thought to maintain lineage commitment programs in a poised state. However, establishing physiological relevance has been complicated by the high number of cells required for chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP. We developed a low-cell-number chromatin immunoprecipitation (low-cell ChIP protocol to investigate the chromatin of mouse primordial germ cells (PGCs. Genome-wide analysis of embryonic day 11.5 (E11.5 PGCs revealed H3K4me3/H3K27me3 bivalent domains highly enriched at developmental regulatory genes in a manner remarkably similar to ESCs. Developmental regulators remain bivalent and transcriptionally silent through the initiation of sexual differentiation at E13.5. We also identified >2,500 “orphan” bivalent domains that are distal to known genes and expressed in a tissue-specific manner but silent in PGCs. Our results demonstrate the existence of bivalent domains in the germline and raise the possibility that the somatic program is continuously maintained as bivalent, potentially imparting transgenerational epigenetic inheritance.

  5. Replicating centromeric chromatin: Spatial and temporal control of CENP-A assembly

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nechemia-Arbely, Yael; Fachinetti, Daniele; Cleveland, Don W.

    2012-01-01

    The centromere is the fundamental unit for insuring chromosome inheritance. This complex region has a distinct type of chromatin in which histone H3 is replaced by a structurally different homologue identified in humans as CENP-A. In metazoans, specific DNA sequences are neither required nor sufficient for centromere identity. Rather, an epigenetic mark comprised of CENP-A containing chromatin is thought to be the major determinant of centromere identity. In this view, CENP-A deposition and chromatin assembly are fundamental processes for the maintenance of centromeric identity across mitotic and meiotic divisions. Several lines of evidence support CENP-A deposition in metazoans occurring at only one time in the cell cycle. Such cell cycle-dependent loading of CENP-A is found in divergent species from human to fission yeast, albeit with differences in the cell cycle point at which CENP-A is assembled. Cell cycle dependent CENP-A deposition requires multiple assembly factors for its deposition and maintenance. This review discusses the regulation of new CENP-A deposition and its relevance to centromere identity and inheritance.

  6. Epigenetic switch involved in activation of pioneer factor FOXA1-dependent enhancers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sérandour, Aurélien A.; Avner, Stéphane; Percevault, Frédéric; Demay, Florence; Bizot, Maud; Lucchetti-Miganeh, Céline; Barloy-Hubler, Frédérique; Brown, Myles; Lupien, Mathieu; Métivier, Raphaël; Salbert, Gilles; Eeckhoute, Jérôme

    2011-01-01

    Transcription factors (TFs) bind specifically to discrete regions of mammalian genomes called cis-regulatory elements. Among those are enhancers, which play key roles in regulation of gene expression during development and differentiation. Despite the recognized central regulatory role exerted by chromatin in control of TF functions, much remains to be learned regarding the chromatin structure of enhancers and how it is established. Here, we have analyzed on a genomic-scale enhancers that recruit FOXA1, a pioneer transcription factor that triggers transcriptional competency of these cis-regulatory sites. Importantly, we found that FOXA1 binds to genomic regions showing local DNA hypomethylation and that its cell-type-specific recruitment to chromatin is linked to differential DNA methylation levels of its binding sites. Using neural differentiation as a model, we showed that induction of FOXA1 expression and its subsequent recruitment to enhancers is associated with DNA demethylation. Concomitantly, histone H3 lysine 4 methylation is induced at these enhancers. These epigenetic changes may both stabilize FOXA1 binding and allow for subsequent recruitment of transcriptional regulatory effectors. Interestingly, when cloned into reporter constructs, FOXA1-dependent enhancers were able to recapitulate their cell type specificity. However, their activities were inhibited by DNA methylation. Hence, these enhancers are intrinsic cell-type-specific regulatory regions of which activities have to be potentiated by FOXA1 through induction of an epigenetic switch that includes notably DNA demethylation. PMID:21233399

  7. Remodeling epigenetic modifications at tumor suppressor gene promoters with bovine oocyte extract.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhenfei; Yue, Yongli; Han, Pengyong; Sa, Rula; Ren, Xiaolv; Wang, Jie; Bai, Haidong; Yu, Haiquan

    2013-09-01

    Epigenetic silencing of tumor suppressor genes by aberrant DNA methylation and histone modifications at their promoter regions plays an important role in the initiation and progression of cancer. The therapeutic effect of the widely used epigenetic drugs, including DNA methyltransferase inhibitors and histone deacetylase inhibitors, remains unsatisfactory. One important underlying factor in the ineffectiveness of these drugs is that their actions lack specificity. To investigate whether oocyte extract can be used for epigenetic re-programming of cancer cells, H460 human lung cancer cells were reversibly permeabilized and incubated with bovine oocyte extract. Bisulfite sequencing showed that bovine oocyte extract induced significant demethylation at hypermethylated promoter CpG islands of the tumor suppressor genes RUNX3 and CDH1; however, the DNA methylation levels of repetitive sequences were not affected. Chromatin immunoprecipitation showed that bovine oocyte extract significantly reduced transcriptionally repressive histone modifications and increased transcriptionally activating histone modifications at the promoter regions of RUNX3 and CDH1. Bovine oocyte extract reactivated the expression of RUNX3 and CDH1 at both the messenger RNA and the protein levels without up-regulating the transcription of pluripotency-associated genes. At the functional level, anchorage-independent proliferation, migration and invasion of H460 cells was strongly inhibited. These results demonstrate that bovine oocyte extract reactivates epigenetically silenced tumor suppressor genes by remodeling the epigenetic modifications at their promoter regions. Bovine oocyte extract may provide a useful tool for investigating epigenetic mechanisms in cancer and a valuable source for developing novel safe therapeutic approaches that target epigenetic alterations. Copyright © 2013 International Society for Cellular Therapy. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Epigenetic influences on the developing brain: effects of hormones and nutrition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nugent BM

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Bridget M Nugent,1 Margaret M McCarthy2 1Department of Animal Biology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA; 2Department of Pharmacology, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA Abstract: The developing brain is subject to modifying influences, both in utero and early postnatally. Some of these are intrinsic, such as gonadal steroids, while others are externally imposed, such as maternal nutrition or stress. All of these variables can have enduring consequences by imposing epigenetic modifications on the genome that alter set points for activation in adulthood, thereby reflecting early-life programming. In this review, we provide an overview of the most well studied epigenetic processes that occur in the brain. Next, we summarize the studies to date that have implicated gonadal steroids, stress exposure, and nutritional deficits/excess in changes in neural epigenetic marks, which ultimately alter brain development, but we also note that this field is still in its infancy. Epigenetic regulators include DNA methylation, changes to the chromatin via acetylation and other chemical modifiers, and noncoding RNAs all of which impact the expression of specific genes. In this way gonadal steroids in the developing male fetus direct masculinization of adult brain and behavior, and similarly in utero exposure to a high-fat or calorie-restricted diet impacts glucose metabolism and body fat composition throughout life. Stress early in life changes the sensitivity of the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA axis to subsequent stressors and this too is mediated, at least in part, by epigenetic changes to key genes to alter the responsiveness threshold. Epigenetics is the integration of the environment and the genome, and hormones and nutrition provide the bridge that allows that integration to occur. Keywords: epigenetics, early-life programming, brain development, hormones, nutrition 

  9. [Epigenetics of schizophrenia: a review].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivollier, F; Lotersztajn, L; Chaumette, B; Krebs, M-O; Kebir, O

    2014-10-01

    Schizophrenia is a frequent and disabling disease associated with heterogeneous psychiatric phenotypes. It emerges during childhood, adolescence or young adulthood and has dramatic consequences for the affected individuals, causing considerable familial and social burden, as well as increasing health expenses. Although some progress has been made in the understanding of their physiopathology, many questions remain unsolved, and the disease is still poorly understood. The prevailing hypothesis regarding psychotic disorders proposes that a combination of genetic and/or environmental factors, during critical periods of brain development increases the risk for these illnesses. Epigenetic regulations, such as DNA methylation, can mediate gene x environment interactions at the level of the genome and may provide a potential substrate to explain the variability in symptom severity and family heritability. Initially, epigenetics was used to design mitotic and meiotic changes in gene transcription that could not be attributed to genetic mutations. It referred later to changes in the epigenome not transmitted through the germline. Thus, epigenetics refers to a wide range of molecular mechanisms including DNA methylation of cytosine residues in CpG dinucleotides and post-translational histone modifications. These mechanisms alter the way the transcriptional factors bind the DNA, modulating its expression. Prenatal and postnatal environmental factors may affect these epigenetics factors, having responsability in long-term DNA transcription, and influencing the development of psychiatric disorders. The object of this review is to present the state of knowledge in epigenetics of schizophrenia, outlining the most recent findings in the matter. We did so using Pubmed, researching words such as 'epigenetics', 'epigenetic', 'schizophrenia', 'psychosis', 'psychiatric'. This review summarizes evidences mostly for two epigenetic mechanisms: DNA methylation and post

  10. A Computer Lab Exploring Evolutionary Aspects of Chromatin Structure and Dynamics for an Undergraduate Chromatin Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eirin-Lopez, Jose M.

    2013-01-01

    The study of chromatin constitutes one of the most active research fields in life sciences, being subject to constant revisions that continuously redefine the state of the art in its knowledge. As every other rapidly changing field, chromatin biology requires clear and straightforward educational strategies able to efficiently translate such a…

  11. A computer lab exploring evolutionary aspects of chromatin structure and dynamics for an undergraduate chromatin course*.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eirín-López, José M

    2013-01-01

    The study of chromatin constitutes one of the most active research fields in life sciences, being subject to constant revisions that continuously redefine the state of the art in its knowledge. As every other rapidly changing field, chromatin biology requires clear and straightforward educational strategies able to efficiently translate such a vast body of knowledge to the classroom. With this aim, the present work describes a multidisciplinary computer lab designed to introduce undergraduate students to the dynamic nature of chromatin, within the context of the one semester course "Chromatin: Structure, Function and Evolution." This exercise is organized in three parts including (a) molecular evolutionary biology of histone families (using the H1 family as example), (b) histone structure and variation across different animal groups, and (c) effect of histone diversity on nucleosome structure and chromatin dynamics. By using freely available bioinformatic tools that can be run on common computers, the concept of chromatin dynamics is interactively illustrated from a comparative/evolutionary perspective. At the end of this computer lab, students are able to translate the bioinformatic information into a biochemical context in which the relevance of histone primary structure on chromatin dynamics is exposed. During the last 8 years this exercise has proven to be a powerful approach for teaching chromatin structure and dynamics, allowing students a higher degree of independence during the processes of learning and self-assessment. Copyright © 2013 International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  12. Paraquat Induces Epigenetic Changes by Promoting Histone Acetylation in Cell Culture Models of Dopaminergic Degeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, C.; Kanthasamy, A.; Jin, H.; Anantharam, V.; Kanthasamy, A. G.

    2012-01-01

    Environmental neurotoxic exposure to agrochemicals has been implicated in the etiopathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease (PD). The widely used herbicide paraquat is among the few environmental chemicals potentially linked with PD. Since epigenetic changes are beginning to emerge as key mechanisms in neurodegenerative diseases, herein we examined the effects of paraquat on histone acetylation, a major epigenetic change in chromatin that can regulate gene expression, chromatin remodeling, cell survival and cell death. Exposure of N27 dopaminergic cells to paraquat induced histone H3 acetylation in a time-dependent manner. However, paraquat did not alter acetylation of another core histone H4. Paraquat-induced histone acetylation was associated with decreased total histone deacetylase (HDAC) activity and HDAC4 and 7 protein expression levels. To determine if histone acetylation plays a role in paraquat-induced apoptosis, the novel HAT inhibitor anacardic acid was used. Anacardic acid treatment significantly attenuated paraquat-induced caspase-3 enzyme activity, suppressed proteolytic activation and kinase activity of protein kinase C delta (PKCδ) and also blocked paraquat-induced cytotoxicity. Together, these results demonstrate that the neurotoxic agent paraquat induced acetylation of core histones in cell culture models of PD and that inhibition of HAT activity by anacardic acid protects against apoptotic cell death, indicating that histone acetylation may represent key epigenetic changes in dopaminergic neuronal cells during neurotoxic insults. PMID:21777615

  13. Chromatin fine structure profiles for a developmentally regulated gene: reorganization of the lysozyme locus before trans-activator binding and gene expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kontaraki, J; Chen, H H; Riggs, A; Bonifer, C

    2000-08-15

    The chicken lysozyme locus is activated in a stepwise fashion during myeloid differentiation. We have used this locus as a model to study at high resolution changes in chromatin structure both in chicken cell lines representing various stages of macrophage differentiation and in primary cells from transgenic mice. In this study we have addressed the question of whether chromatin rearrangements can be detected in myeloid precursor cells at a stage well before overt transcription of the lysozyme gene begins. In addition to restriction enzyme accessibility assays and DMS footprinting, we have applied new, very sensitive techniques to assay for chromatin changes. Particularly informative was UV photofootprinting, using terminal transferase-dependent PCR and nonradioactive detection. We find that the basic chromatin structure in lysozyme nonexpressing hematopoietic precursor cells is highly similar to the pattern found in fully differentiated lysozyme-expressing cells. In addition, we find that only in nonexpressing cells are dimethylsulfate footprints and UV photofootprints affected by trichostatin, an inhibitor of histone deacetylation. These results are interpreted to mean that most chromatin pattern formation is complete before the binding of end-stage trans-activators, supporting the notion that heritable chromatin structure is central to the stable epigenetic programs that guide development.

  14. Chromatin fine structure profiles for a developmentally regulated gene: reorganization of the lysozyme locus before trans-activator binding and gene expression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kontaraki, Joanna; Chen, Hsiu-Hua; Riggs, Arthur; Bonifer, Constanze

    2000-01-01

    The chicken lysozyme locus is activated in a stepwise fashion during myeloid differentiation. We have used this locus as a model to study at high resolution changes in chromatin structure both in chicken cell lines representing various stages of macrophage differentiation and in primary cells from transgenic mice. In this study we have addressed the question of whether chromatin rearrangements can be detected in myeloid precursor cells at a stage well before overt transcription of the lysozyme gene begins. In addition to restriction enzyme accessibility assays and DMS footprinting, we have applied new, very sensitive techniques to assay for chromatin changes. Particularly informative was UV photofootprinting, using terminal transferase-dependent PCR and nonradioactive detection. We find that the basic chromatin structure in lysozyme nonexpressing hematopoietic precursor cells is highly similar to the pattern found in fully differentiated lysozyme-expressing cells. In addition, we find that only in nonexpressing cells are dimethylsulfate footprints and UV photofootprints affected by trichostatin, an inhibitor of histone deacetylation. These results are interpreted to mean that most chromatin pattern formation is complete before the binding of end-stage trans-activators, supporting the notion that heritable chromatin structure is central to the stable epigenetic programs that guide development. PMID:10950873

  15. An overview of epigenetics in nursing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Ashley Erin; Adamian, Maria; Taylor, Jacquelyn Y

    2013-12-01

    Epigenetic changes to the genome are biochemical alterations to the DNA that do not change an individual's genome but do change and influence gene expression. The nursing profession is qualified to conduct and integrate epigenetic-focused nursing research into practice. This article discusses current epigenetic nursing research, provides an overview of how epigenetic research relates to nursing practice, makes recommendations, and provides epigenetic online resources for nursing research. An overview of major epigenetic studies in nursing (specific to childbirth studies, preeclampsia, metabolic syndrome, immunotherapy cancer, and pain) is provided, with recommendations on next steps. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Quantitative analysis of chromatin accessibility in mouse embryonic fibroblasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuo, Baowen; Yu, Juan; Chang, Luyuan; Lei, Jiafan; Wen, Zengqi; Liu, Cuifang; Mao, Guankun; Wang, Kehui; Shen, Jie; Xu, Xueqing

    2017-11-04

    Genomic DNA of eukaryotic cells is hierarchically packaged into chromatin by histones. The dynamic organization of chromatin fibers plays a critical role in the regulation of gene transcription and other DNA-associated biological processes. Recently, numerous approaches have been developed to map the chromatin organization by characterizing chromatin accessibilities in genome-wide. However, reliable methods to quantitatively map chromatin accessibility are not well-established, especially not on a genome-wide scale. Here, we developed a modified MNase-seq for mouse embryonic fibroblasts, wherein chromatin was partially digested at multiple digestion times using micrococcal nuclease (MNase), allowing quantitative analysis of local yet genome-wide chromatin compaction. Our results provide strong evidence that the chromatin accessibility at promoter regions are positively correlated with gene activity. In conclusion, our assay is an ideal tool for the quantitative study of gene regulation in the perspective of chromatin accessibility. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Chromatin proteins: key responders to stress.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen T Smith

    Full Text Available Environments can be ever-changing and stresses are commonplace. In order for organisms to survive, they need to be able to respond to change and adapt to new conditions. Fortunately, many organisms have systems in place that enable dynamic adaptation to immediate stresses and changes within the environment. Much of this cellular response is coordinated by modulating the structure and accessibility of the genome. In eukaryotic cells, the genome is packaged and rolled up by histone proteins to create a series of DNA/histone core structures known as nucleosomes; these are further condensed into chromatin. The degree and nature of the condensation can in turn determine which genes are transcribed. Histones can be modified chemically by a large number of proteins that are thereby responsible for dynamic changes in gene expression. In this Primer we discuss findings from a study published in this issue of PLoS Biology by Weiner et al. that highlight how chromatin structure and chromatin binding proteins alter transcription in response to environmental changes and stresses. Their study reveals the importance of chromatin in mediating the speed and amplitude of stress responses in cells and suggests that chromatin is a critically important component of the cellular response to stress.

  18. New mitotic regulators released from chromatin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hideki eYokoyama

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Faithful action of the mitotic spindle segregates duplicated chromosomes into daughter cells. Perturbations of this process result in chromosome mis-segregation, leading to chromosomal instability and cancer development. Chromosomes are not simply passengers segregated by spindle microtubules but rather play a major active role in spindle assembly. The GTP bound form of the Ran GTPase (RanGTP, produced around chromosomes, locally activates spindle assembly factors. Recent studies have uncovered that chromosomes organize mitosis beyond spindle formation. They distinctly regulate other mitotic events, such as spindle maintenance in anaphase, which is essential for chromosome segregation. Furthermore, the direct function of chromosomes is not only to produce RanGTP but, in addition, to release key mitotic regulators from chromatin. Chromatin-remodeling factors and nuclear pore complex proteins, which have established functions on chromatin in interphase, dissociate from mitotic chromatin and function in spindle assembly or maintenance. Thus, chromosomes actively organize their own segregation using chromatin-releasing mitotic regulators as well as RanGTP.

  19. Neutron-scattering studies of chromatin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bradbury, E.M.; Baldwin, J.P.; Carpenter, B.G.; Hjelm, R.P.; Hancock, R.; Ibel, K.

    1976-01-01

    It is clear that a knowledge of the basic molecular structure of chromatin is a prerequisite for any progress toward an understanding of chromosome organization. With a two-component system, protein and nucleic acid, neutrons have a particularly powerful application to studies of the spatial arrangements of these components because of the ability, by contrast matching with H 2 O-D 2 O mixtures, to obtain neutron-scattering data on the individual components. With this approach it has been shown that the neutron diffraction of chromatin is consistent with a ''beads on a string'' model in which the bead consists of a protein core with DNA coiled on the outside. However, because chromatin is a gel and gives limited structural data, confirmation of such a model requires extension of the neutron studies by deuteration of specific chromatin components and the isolation of chromatin subunits. Although these studies are not complete, the neutron results so far obtained support the subunit model described above

  20. Nature, Nurture and Epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crews, David; Gillette, Ross; Miller-Crews, Isaac; Gore, Andrea C.; Skinner, Michael K.

    2015-01-01

    Real life by definition combines heritability (e.g., the legacy of exposures) and experience (e.g. stress during sensitive or ‘critical’ periods), but how to study or even model this interaction has proven difficult. The hoary concept of evaluating traits according to nature vs. nurture continues to persist despite repeated demonstrations that it retards, rather than advances, our understanding of biological processes. Behavioral genetics has proven the obvious, that genes influences behavior and, vice versa, that behavior influences genes. The concept of Genes X Environment (G X E) and its modern variants was viewed as an improvement on nature-nurture but has proven that, except in rare instances, it is not possible to fractionate phenotypes into these constituent elements. The entanglement inherent in terms such as nature-nurture or GXE is a Gordian knot that cannot be dissected or even split. Given that the world today is not what it was less than a century ago, yet the arbitrator (differential survival and reproduction) has stayed constant, de novo principles and practices are needed to better predict what the future holds. Put simply, the transformation that is now occurring within and between individuals as a product of global endocrine disruption is quite independent of what has been regarded as evolution by selection. This new perspective should focus on how epigenetic modifications might revise approaches to understand how the phenotype and, in particular its components, is shaped. In this review we summarize the literature in this developing area, focusing on our research on the fungicide vinclozolin. PMID:25102229

  1. Transgenerational epigenetics and environmental justice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothstein, Mark A; Harrell, Heather L; Marchant, Gary E

    2017-07-01

    Human transmission to offspring and future generations of acquired epigenetic modifications has not been definitively established, although there are several environmental exposures with suggestive evidence. This article uses three examples of hazardous substances with greater exposures in vulnerable populations: pesticides, lead, and diesel exhaust. It then considers whether, if there were scientific evidence of transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, there would be greater attention given to concerns about environmental justice in environmental laws, regulations, and policies at all levels of government. To provide a broader perspective on environmental justice the article discusses two of the most commonly cited approaches to environmental justice. John Rawls's theory of justice as fairness, a form of egalitarianism, is frequently invoked for the principle that differential treatment of individuals is justified only if actions are designed to benefit those with the greatest need. Another theory, the capabilities approach of Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum, focuses on whether essential capabilities of society, such as life and health, are made available to all individuals. In applying principles of environmental justice the article considers whether there is a heightened societal obligation to protect the most vulnerable individuals from hazardous exposures that could adversely affect their offspring through epigenetic mechanisms. It concludes that unless there were compelling evidence of transgenerational epigenetic harms, it is unlikely that there would be a significant impetus to adopt new policies to prevent epigenetic harms by invoking principles of environmental justice.

  2. Epigenetic effects of ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    EI-Naggar, A.M.

    2007-01-01

    Data generated during the last three decades provide evidence of Epigenetic Effects that ave-induced by ionizing radiation, particularly those of high LET values, and low level dose exposures. Epigenesist is defined as the stepwise process by which genetic information, as modified by environmental influences, is translated into the substance and behavior of cells, tissues, organism.The epigenetic effects cited in the literature are essentially classified into fine types depending on the type and nature of the effect induced.The most accepted postulation, for the occurrence of these epigenetic effects, is a radiation induced bio electric disturbances in the environment of the non-irradiated cellular volume. This will trigger signals that will induce effects in the unirradiated cells.The epigenetic effects referenced in the literature up to date are five types; namely, Genomic Instability, Bystander. Effects, Clastogenic Plasma Factors,, Abscopal Effects, and Tran generational Effects.The demonstration of Epigenetic Effects associated with exposure to ionizing radiation indicates the need to re- examine the concept of radiation dose and target size. Also an improved understanding of qualifiring and quantifying radiation risk estimates may be attained. Also, a more logical means to understand the underlying mechanisms of radiation induced carcinogenic transformation of cells

  3. Recent Findings in Alzheimer Disease and Nutrition Focusing on Epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athanasopoulos, Dimitrios; Karagiannis, George; Tsolaki, Magda

    2016-09-01

    Alzheimer disease (AD) is a chronic neurodegenerative disease with no effective cure so far. The current review focuses on the epigenetic mechanisms of AD and how nutrition can influence the course of this disease through regulation of gene expression, according to the latest scientific findings. The search strategy was the use of scientific databases such as PubMed and Scopus in order to find relative research or review articles published in the years 2012-2015. By showing the latest data of various nutritional compounds, this study aims to stimulate the scientific community to recognize the value of nutrition in this subject. Epigenetics is becoming a very attractive subject for researchers because it can shed light on unknown aspects of complex diseases like AD. DNA methylation, histone modifications, and microRNAs are the principal epigenetic mechanisms involved in AD pathophysiology. Nutrition is an environmental factor that is related to AD through epigenetic pathways. Vitamin B-12, for instance, can alter the one-carbon metabolism and thus interfere in the DNA methylation process. The research results might seem ambiguous about the clinical role of nutrition, but there is strengthening evidence that proper nutrition can not only change epigenetic biomarker levels but also prevent the development of late-onset AD and attenuate cognition deficit. Nutrition might grow to become a preventive and even therapeutic alternative against AD, especially if combined with other antidementia interventions, brain exercise, physical training, etc. Epigenetic biomarkers can be a very helpful tool to help researchers find the exact nutrients needed to create specific remedies, and perhaps the same biomarkers can be used even in patient screening in the future. © 2016 American Society for Nutrition.

  4. Chromatin regulatory mechanisms of gene expression at mononucleosomal level: nucleosome occupancy and epigenetic modifications

    OpenAIRE

    Riffo Campos, Angela Leticia

    2015-01-01

    La cromatina es una compleja estructura compuesta por DNA, RNA y proteínas, que permite compactar el genoma en las células eucariotas. Siendo el cromosoma el nivel más alto de compactación y el nucleosoma la subunidad fundamental de la misma. El nucleosoma está compuesto por un octámero de histonas, siendo H2A, H2B, H3 y H4 las canónicas. Este octámero se encuentra envuelto por 147 pb de DNA doble cadena. Entre los nucleosomas se encuentra una zona de DNA flanqueante y la histona H1 (o H5 en a...

  5. Discovery and annotation of functional chromatin signatures in the human genome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gary Hon

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Transcriptional regulation in human cells is a complex process involving a multitude of regulatory elements encoded by the genome. Recent studies have shown that distinct chromatin signatures mark a variety of functional genomic elements and that subtle variations of these signatures mark elements with different functions. To identify novel chromatin signatures in the human genome, we apply a de novo pattern-finding algorithm to genome-wide maps of histone modifications. We recover previously known chromatin signatures associated with promoters and enhancers. We also observe several chromatin signatures with strong enrichment of H3K36me3 marking exons. Closer examination reveals that H3K36me3 is found on well-positioned nucleosomes at exon 5' ends, and that this modification is a global mark of exon expression that also correlates with alternative splicing. Additionally, we observe strong enrichment of H2BK5me1 and H4K20me1 at highly expressed exons near the 5' end, in contrast to the opposite distribution of H3K36me3-marked exons. Finally, we also recover frequently occurring chromatin signatures displaying enrichment of repressive histone modifications. These signatures mark distinct repeat sequences and are associated with distinct modes of gene repression. Together, these results highlight the rich information embedded in the human epigenome and underscore its value in studying gene regulation.

  6. Aberrant Epigenetic Modifications of LPHN2 Function as a Potential Cisplatin-Specific Biomarker for Human Gastrointestinal Cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeon, Mi-Seong; Song, Sang-Hyun; Yun, Jiyeon; Kang, Jee-Youn; Kim, Hwang-Phill; Han, Sae-Won; Kim, Tae-You

    2016-04-01

    Epigenetic alterations of specific genes have recently been identified as diagnostic biomarkers for human cancers. However, there are currently no standardized epigenetic biomarkers for drug sensitivity in human gastrointestinal cancer. Therefore, the aim of this study is to identify a novel epigenetic biomarker in gastrointestinal cancer. Using bisulfite sequencing and pyrosequencing analysis, DNA methylation patterns of gastric, colon primary tissues and their cancer cells were analyzed, and histone modifications were analyzed using chromatin immunoprecipitation assay. In addition, cancer cells were exposed to cisplatin and treated with a DNA methyltransferase inhibitor. We report that in human gastric and colon cancers, latrophilin 2 (LPHN2) is silenced by epigenetic modifications, including CpG island methylation and aberrant histone modifications. We also confirmed that LPHN2 was silenced by DNA hypermethylation in primary gastric and colon tumor tissues compared to their normal counterparts. Interestingly, we found that cancer cells with methylated LPHN2 showed higher sensitivity to cisplatin. Also, 5-aza- 2'-deoxycytidine combined with cisplatin decreased the cytotoxicity of cisplatin in cancer cells with methylated LPHN2. In addition, LPHN2 knockdown in cancer cells with high LPHN2 expression sensitized these cells to the anti-proliferative effects of cisplatin. In human gastrointestinal cancer, we found that LPHN2 is regulated by epigenetic modifications, and that cancer cells with lower LPHN2 expression show higher sensitivity to cisplatin. Therefore, the methylation status of LPHN2 is a potential novel epigenetic biomarker for cisplatin treatment in human gastric and colon cancers.

  7. A nanoparticle-based epigenetic modulator for efficient gene modulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pongkulapa, Thanapat

    Modulation of gene expression through chromatin remodeling involves epigenetic mechanisms, such as histone acetylation. Acetylation is tightly regulated by two classes of enzymes, histone acetyltransferases (HATs) and histone deacetylases (HDACs). Molecules that can regulate these enzymes by altering (activating or inhibiting) their functions have become a valuable tool for understanding cell development and diseases. HAT activators, i.e. N-(4-Chloro-(3-trifluoromethyl)phenyl)-2-ethoxybenzamide (CTB), have shown a therapeutic potential for many diseases, including cancer and neurodegeneration. However, these compounds encounter a solubility and a membrane permeability issue, which restricts their full potential for practical usage, especially for in vivo applications. To address this issue, in this work, we developed a nanoparticle-based HAT activator CTB, named Au-CTB, by incorporating a new CTB analogue onto gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) along with a poly(ethylene glycol) moiety and a nuclear localization signal (NLS) peptide to assist with solubility and membrane permeability. We found that our new CTB analogue and Au-CTB could activate HAT activity. Significantly, an increase in potency to activate HAT activity by Au-CTB proved the effectiveness of using the nanoparticle delivery platform. In addition, the versatility of Au-CTB platform permits the attachment of multiple ligands with tunable ratios on the nanoparticle surface via facile surface functionalization of gold nanoparticles. Due to its high delivery efficiency and versatility, Au-CTB can be a powerful platform for applications in epigenetic regulation of gene expression.

  8. Autocatalytic differentiation of epigenetic modifications within the Arabidopsis genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inagaki, Soichi; Miura-Kamio, Asuka; Nakamura, Yasukazu; Lu, Falong; Cui, Xia; Cao, Xiaofeng; Kimura, Hiroshi; Saze, Hidetoshi; Kakutani, Tetsuji

    2010-10-20

    In diverse eukaryotes, constitutively silent sequences, such as transposons and repeats, are marked by methylation at histone H3 lysine 9 (H3K9me). Although selective H3K9me is critical for maintaining genome integrity, mechanisms to exclude H3K9me from active genes remain largely unexplored. Here, we show in Arabidopsis that the exclusion depends on a histone demethylase gene, IBM1 (increase in BONSAI methylation). Loss-of-function ibm1 mutation results in ectopic H3K9me and non-CG methylation in thousands of genes. The ibm1-induced genic H3K9me depends on both histone methylase KYP/SUVH4 and DNA methylase CMT3, suggesting interdependence of two epigenetic marks--H3K9me and non-CG methylation. Notably, IBM1 enhances loss of H3K9me in transcriptionally de-repressed sequences. Furthermore, disruption of transcription in genes induces ectopic non-CG methylation, which mimics the loss of IBM1 function. We propose that active chromatin is stabilized by an autocatalytic loop of transcription and H3K9 demethylation. This process counteracts a similarly autocatalytic accumulation of silent epigenetic marks, H3K9me and non-CG methylation.

  9. Chromatin and nucleosome dynamics in DNA damage and repair.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauer, Michael H; Gasser, Susan M

    2017-11-15

    Chromatin is organized into higher-order structures that form subcompartments in interphase nuclei. Different categories of specialized enzymes act on chromatin and regulate its compaction and biophysical characteristics in response to physiological conditions. We present an overview of the function of chromatin structure and its dynamic changes in response to genotoxic stress, focusing on both subnuclear organization and the physical mobility of DNA. We review the requirements and mechanisms that cause chromatin relocation, enhanced mobility, and chromatin unfolding as a consequence of genotoxic lesions. An intriguing link has been established recently between enhanced chromatin dynamics and histone loss. © 2017 Hauer and Gasser; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

  10. Autism genes keep turning up chromatin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lasalle, Janine M

    2013-06-19

    Autism-spectrum disorders (ASD) are complex genetic disorders collectively characterized by impaired social interactions and language as well as repetitive and restrictive behaviors. Of the hundreds of genes implicated in ASD, those encoding proteins acting at neuronal synapses have been most characterized by candidate gene studies. However, recent unbiased genome-wide analyses have turned up a multitude of novel candidate genes encoding nuclear factors implicated in chromatin remodeling, histone demethylation, histone variants, and the recognition of DNA methylation. Furthermore, the chromatin landscape of the human genome has been shown to influence the location of de novo mutations observed in ASD as well as the landscape of DNA methylation underlying neurodevelopmental and synaptic processes. Understanding the interactions of nuclear chromatin proteins and DNA with signal transduction pathways and environmental influences in the developing brain will be critical to understanding the relevance of these ASD candidate genes and continued uncovering of the "roots" of autism etiology.

  11. Genetic alterations and epigenetic changes in hepatocarcinogenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luz Stella Hoyos Giraldo

    2007-02-01

    arms17p, 13q, 9p, 6q and 16p, LOH has been related to p53, RB1, p16, IGF2R and Axin1 inactivation. The b-catenin involved in intercellular interactions and signal transduction, this gene is mutated in 20-25% of HCCs at 3p. Cyclin gene has been shown to be amplified in 10-20% of HCC. LOH at the RB1 gene locus and RB1 mutations have been observed in about 15% of HCCs. Epigenetic changes in the expression of cancer- critical genes also play an important role in susceptibility to hepatocarcinogenesis induction. Changes in DNA methylation seems to be the most important mechanism for epigenetic change that could be involved in both the initiation and promotion stages of hepatocarcinogenesis. Methylation is inherited even after DNA replication by maintenance methylation. DNA methylation is often coupled with histone deacetylation and chromatin structure, and regulatory enzymes of DNA methylation (DNMT1. Exposure to environmental carcinogens may induce changes in methylation of the genes involved in hepatocarcinogenesis. Hypomethylation of promoter region leading to over expression of oncogens (c-myc. There is potentially an association between hypomethylation and CIN. Hypermethylation at CpG Island of promoter regions leads to inhibition of the binding of transcription factors directly and/or employment of the binding of protein that act to inhibit the binding of the transcription factors to cis elements. Promoter hypermethylation and loss of protein expression of TSG has been demonstrated in HCC at p16, E-cadherin (essential for adhesion functions and 14-3-. Hypermethylation in HCC has been reported in p14, p15, SOCS1, RIZ1. However, protein expression was not assessed. Epigenetic inactivation of TSG has been recognized as contributing to tumor progression. Hypermethylation leading to an increased incidence of deamination of 5-methylcytosine to thymine, leading to C to T point mutation in TSG and/or proto-oncogenes.

    Occupying chromatin: Polycomb mechanisms for getting to genomic targets, stopping transcriptional traffic, and staying put

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Jeffrey A.; Kingston, Robert E.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Polycomb repressive complexes are conserved chromatin regulators with key roles in multicellular development, stem cell biology, and cancer. New findings advance molecular understanding of how they target to sites of action, interact with and alter local chromatin to silence genes, and maintain silencing in successive generations of proliferating cells. Chromatin modification by Polycomb proteins provides an essential strategy for gene silencing in higher eukaryotes. Polycomb repressive complexes (PRCs) silence many key developmental regulators and are centrally integrated in the transcriptional circuitry of embryonic and adult stem cells. PRC2 trimethylates histone H3 on lysine-27 (H3-K27me3) and PRC1-type complexes ubiquitylate histone H2A and compact polynucleosomes. How PRCs and these signature activities are deployed to select and silence genomic targets is the subject of intense current investigation. We review recent advances on targeting, modulation, and functions of PRC1 and PRC2, and we consider progress on defining transcriptional steps impacted in Polycomb silencing. Key recent findings demonstrate PRC1 targeting independent of H3-K27me3 and emphasize nonenzymatic PRC1-mediated compaction. We also evaluate expanding connections between Polycomb machinery and non-coding RNAs. Exciting new studies supply the first systematic analyses of what happens to Polycomb complexes, and associated histone modifications, during the wholesale chromatin reorganizations that accompany DNA replication and mitosis. The stage is now set to reveal fundamental epigenetic mechanisms that determine how Polycomb target genes are silenced and how Polycomb silence is preserved through cell cycle progression. PMID:23473600

  12. Epigenetic alterations underlying autoimmune diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aslani, Saeed; Mahmoudi, Mahdi; Karami, Jafar; Jamshidi, Ahmad Reza; Malekshahi, Zahra; Nicknam, Mohammad Hossein

    2016-01-01

    Recent breakthroughs in genetic explorations have extended our understanding through discovery of genetic patterns subjected to autoimmune diseases (AID). Genetics, on the contrary, has not answered all the conundrums to describe a comprehensive explanation of causal mechanisms of disease etiopathology with regard to the function of environment, sex, or aging. The other side of the coin, epigenetics which is defined by gene manifestation modification without DNA sequence alteration, reportedly has come in to provide new insights towards disease apprehension through bridging the genetics and environmental factors. New investigations in genetic and environmental contributing factors for autoimmunity provide new explanation whereby the interactions between genetic elements and epigenetic modifications signed by environmental agents may be responsible for autoimmune disease initiation and perpetuation. It is aimed through this article to review recent progress attempting to reveal how epigenetics associates with the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases.

  13. Epigenetics in cancer stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toh, Tan Boon; Lim, Jhin Jieh; Chow, Edward Kai-Hua

    2017-02-01

    Compelling evidence have demonstrated that bulk tumors can arise from a unique subset of cells commonly termed "cancer stem cells" that has been proposed to be a strong driving force of tumorigenesis and a key mechanism of therapeutic resistance. Recent advances in epigenomics have illuminated key mechanisms by which epigenetic regulation contribute to cancer progression. In this review, we present a discussion of how deregulation of various epigenetic pathways can contribute to cancer initiation and tumorigenesis, particularly with respect to maintenance and survival of cancer stem cells. This information, together with several promising clinical and preclinical trials of epigenetic modulating drugs, offer new possibilities for targeting cancer stem cells as well as improving cancer therapy overall.

  14. The 5' region ofXistRNA has the potential to associate with chromatin through the A-repeat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chigi, Yuta; Sasaki, Hiroyuki; Sado, Takashi

    2017-12-01

    X inactive-specific transcript ( Xist ) is a long noncoding RNA that plays an essential role in X chromosome inactivation. Although Xist RNA, like common protein-coding mRNAs, is transcribed by RNA polymerase II, spliced and polyadenylated, it is retained in the nucleus and associates with the X chromosome it originates from. It has been assumed that Xist RNA recruits proteins involved in epigenetic modifications and chromatin compaction to the X chromosome. One of the major proteins constituting the nuclear matrix, hnRNP U, has been shown to be required for the association of Xist RNA with the inactive X chromosome (Xi). In this study, we found that the first 950-nt sequence of Xist RNA had the potential to associate with chromatin in a manner independent of hnRNP U. Furthermore, its chromatin association is apparently dependent on the presence of an intact A-repeat sequence, which is one of the repeats in Xist / XIST RNA conserved among many mammalian species, and has been shown to be important for Xist RNA-mediated silencing. Taking this unexpected finding and a previous study demonstrating the effect of Xist RNA lacking the A-repeat on the formation of the silent heterochromatin domain together, we suggest that the A-repeat captures chromatin near the initial loading site of Xist RNA and relocates it into the core of the heterochromatin domain. © 2017 Chigi et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press for the RNA Society.

  15. Gene Resistance to Transcriptional Reprogramming following Nuclear Transfer Is Directly Mediated by Multiple Chromatin-Repressive Pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jullien, Jerome; Vodnala, Munender; Pasque, Vincent; Oikawa, Mami; Miyamoto, Kei; Allen, George; David, Sarah Anne; Brochard, Vincent; Wang, Stan; Bradshaw, Charles; Koseki, Haruhiko; Sartorelli, Vittorio; Beaujean, Nathalie; Gurdon, John

    2017-03-02

    Understanding the mechanism of resistance of genes to reactivation will help improve the success of nuclear reprogramming. Using mouse embryonic fibroblast nuclei with normal or reduced DNA methylation in combination with chromatin modifiers able to erase H3K9me3, H3K27me3, and H2AK119ub1 from transplanted nuclei, we reveal the basis for resistance of genes to transcriptional reprogramming by oocyte factors. A majority of genes is affected by more than one type of treatment, suggesting that resistance can require repression through multiple epigenetic mechanisms. We classify resistant genes according to their sensitivity to 11 chromatin modifier combinations, revealing the existence of synergistic as well as adverse effects of chromatin modifiers on removal of resistance. We further demonstrate that the chromatin modifier USP21 reduces resistance through its H2AK119 deubiquitylation activity. Finally, we provide evidence that H2A ubiquitylation also contributes to resistance to transcriptional reprogramming in mouse nuclear transfer embryos. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Disconnect between alcohol-induced alterations in chromatin structure and gene transcription in a mouse embryonic stem cell model of exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veazey, Kylee J; Wang, Haiqing; Bedi, Yudhishtar S; Skiles, William M; Chang, Richard Cheng-An; Golding, Michael C

    2017-05-01

    Alterations to chromatin structure induced by environmental insults have become an attractive explanation for the persistence of exposure effects into subsequent life stages. However, a growing body of work examining the epigenetic impact that alcohol and other drugs of abuse exert consistently notes a disconnection between induced changes in chromatin structure and patterns of gene transcription. Thus, an important question is whether perturbations in the 'histone code' induced by prenatal exposures to alcohol implicitly subvert gene expression, or whether the hierarchy of cellular signaling networks driving development is such that they retain control over the transcriptional program. To address this question, we examined the impact of ethanol exposure in mouse embryonic stem cells cultured under 2i conditions, where the transcriptional program is rigidly enforced through the use of small molecule inhibitors. We find that ethanol-induced changes in post-translational histone modifications are dose-dependent, unique to the chromatin modification under investigation, and that the extent and direction of the change differ between the period of exposure and the recovery phase. Similar to in vivo models, we find post-translational modifications affecting histone 3 lysine 9 are the most profoundly impacted, with the signature of exposure persisting long after alcohol has been removed. These changes in chromatin structure associate with dose-dependent alterations in the levels of transcripts encoding Dnmt1, Uhrf1, Tet1, Tet2, Tet3, and Polycomb complex members Eed and Ezh2. However, in this model, ethanol-induced changes to the chromatin template do not consistently associate with changes in gene transcription, impede the process of differentiation, or affect the acquisition of monoallelic patterns of expression for the imprinted gene Igf2R. These findings question the inferred universal relevance of epigenetic changes induced by drugs of abuse and suggest that changes

  17. Epigenetic Inheritance across the Landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whipple, Amy V; Holeski, Liza M

    2016-01-01

    The study of epigenomic variation at the landscape-level in plants may add important insight to studies of adaptive variation. A major goal of landscape genomic studies is to identify genomic regions contributing to adaptive variation across the landscape. Heritable variation in epigenetic marks, resulting in transgenerational plasticity, can influence fitness-related traits. Epigenetic marks are influenced by the genome, the environment, and their interaction, and can be inherited independently of the genome. Thus, epigenomic variation likely influences the heritability of many adaptive traits, but the extent of this influence remains largely unknown. Here, we summarize the relevance of epigenetic inheritance to ecological and evolutionary processes, and review the literature on landscape-level patterns of epigenetic variation. Landscape-level patterns of epigenomic variation in plants generally show greater levels of isolation by distance and isolation by environment then is found for the genome, but the causes of these patterns are not yet clear. Linkage between the environment and epigenomic variation has been clearly shown within a single generation, but demonstrating transgenerational inheritance requires more complex breeding and/or experimental designs. Transgenerational epigenetic variation may alter the interpretation of landscape genomic studies that rely upon phenotypic analyses, but should have less influence on landscape genomic approaches that rely upon outlier analyses or genome-environment associations. We suggest that multi-generation common garden experiments conducted across multiple environments will allow researchers to understand which parts of the epigenome are inherited, as well as to parse out the relative contribution of heritable epigenetic variation to the phenotype.

  18. Dynamics of Histone Tails within Chromatin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernier, Morgan; North, Justin; Page, Michael; Jaroniec, Christopher; Hammel, Christopher; Poirier, Michael

    2012-02-01

    Genetic information in humans is encoded within DNA molecules that is wrapped around histone octamer proteins and compacted into a highly conserved structural polymer, chromatin. The physical and material properties of chromatin appear to influence gene expression by altering the accessibility of proteins to the DNA. The tails of the histones are flexible domains that are thought to play a role in regulating DNA accessibility and compaction; however the molecular mechanisms for these phenomena are not understood. I will present CW-EPR studies on site directed spin labeled nucleosomes that probe the structure and dynamics of these histone tails within nucleosomes.

  19. Introduction to the Special Section on Epigenetics

    OpenAIRE

    Lester, Barry M.; Conradt, Elisabeth; Marsit, Carmen

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetics provides the opportunity to revolutionize our understanding of the role of genetics and the environment in explaining human behavior, although the use of epigenetics to study human behavior is just beginning. In this introduction, the authors present the basics of epigenetics in a way that is designed to make this exciting field accessible to a wide readership. The authors describe the history of human behavioral epigenetic research in the context of other disciplines and graphica...