Epigenetic Control of Embryonic Stem Cell Differentiation

Armstrong, Lyle
March 2012
Stem Cell Reviews & Reports;Mar2012, Vol. 8 Issue 1, p67
Academic Journal
Pluripotent embryonic stem cells can give rise to almost all somatic cell types but this characteristic requires precise control of their gene expression patterns. The necessity of keeping the entire genome 'poised' to enter into any of a number of developmental possibilities requires a unique and highly plastic chromatin organisation based around specific patterns of histone modifications although this state of affairs is normally short lived during embryonic development. By deriving embryonic stem cells from the early embryo, we can preserve the highly specialised genome organisation and this has permitted several detailed investigations into the molecular basis of pluripotency.


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