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Nature 447, 396-398 (24 May 2007) | doi:10.1038/nature05913; Published online 23 May 2007

Perceptions of epigenetics

Adrian Bird1

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Geneticists study the gene; however, for epigeneticists, there is no obvious 'epigene'. Nevertheless, during the past year, more than 2,500 articles, numerous scientific meetings and a new journal were devoted to the subject of epigenetics. It encompasses some of the most exciting contemporary biology and is portrayed by the popular press as a revolutionary new science — an antidote to the idea that we are hard-wired by our genes. So what is epigenetics?

  1. Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology, Edinburgh University, The King's Buildings, Edinburgh EH9 3JR, UK.

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