Current Stem Cell Research & Therapy

Anthony Atala  
Wake Forest University School of Medicine,
Medical Center Boulevard
Winston Salem, NC 27157


The Involvement of DNA Methylation and Histone Modification on the Epigenetic Regulation of Embryonic Stem Cells and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

Author(s): Kenneth Siu-Sing Leung, Vincent Wing-Sang Cheng, Simon Wing-Fai Mok and Stephen Kwok-Wing Tsui

Affiliation: School of Biomedical Sciences, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong.


Stem cell research has been developing rapidly in diverse areas such as the fields of genetics and molecular biology over the past decades. Genomic studies on both embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and terminally-differentiated cells illustrated that factors apart from their hereditary information disparity are associated with gene expression patterns of ESCs. Therefore, current research is trying to explore the effects of epigenetic processes in stem cell physiology and phenotypic changes. In-depth analyses of the molecular mechanisms underpinning such epigenetic-mediated functions have also been conducted. These findings suggest the importance of understanding the epigenetic influences in stem cell activities. Accordingly this review will describe the regulatory machineries of stem cells development targeting the two epigenetic processes: (1) DNA methylation and (2) histones modification. In addition, up-to-date findings concerning the functional roles of these processes in stem cells homeostasis will be covered.

Keywords: CpG islands, DNA methylation, DNA methyltransferases, epigenetics, histones modifications, pluripotency, stem cell.

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Article Details

Page: [388 - 395]
Pages: 8
DOI: 10.2174/1574888X09666140507154005