Epigenetics harbours all regulatory information that, beyond nucleotide sequences, allows
cells to “make decisions” throughout their lifetime in response to the external environment. The information
can be transitory or relatively stable, and is even transmittable either to daughter cells or to
the next generations through the germ line. Recent discoveries shed light on numerous connections between
metabolites and epigenetic chromatin-modifying enzymes, providing a link between the metabolic
state of the cell and epigenetics, and ultimately between metabolism, gene expression and cell
fate. In this review, we discuss the possible connections between metabolism and epigenetic regulation of stem cell differentiation
and self-renewal. Moreover, we describe pertinent literature that could explain how altered metabolic state and
nutrition can contribute to disease development through epigenetic modifications. A special section is dedicated to the
emerging link between the circadian clock, metabolic transcriptional regulation by epigenetic mechanisms and their implication
in stem cell homeostasis.
Keywords: Circadian rhythms, epigenetics, metabolism, microRNAs, nutrition, stem cells.
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