Epigenetics in the nervous system

Definition

Epigenetics in the nervous system is the study of the interaction between epigenetic process, which regulate gene expression without changing the deoxyribonucleic acid sequence, and the development, physiology and functions of the nervous system.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    Neurons require lifelong maintenance of their transcriptional program, which includes stable expression of cell-type-specific identity genes. A study now shows that PRC2-mediated chromatin repression in adulthood is critical for the maintenance of neuronal identity gene expression and neuronal survival.

    • X William Yang
    Nature Neuroscience 19, 1271–1273
  • News and Views |

    Early nicotine exposure during brain development may cause long-lasting neurobiological and behavioral alterations in adulthood. Jung et al. present insights into the mechanisms mediating these developmental changes.

    • Rafael Maldonado
    •  & Miquel Martin
    Nature Neuroscience 19, 863–864
  • Comments and Opinion |

    Endocrine disruptors are critical environmental exposures that influence health and can promote epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of disease and abnormal physiology. Advances in 2015 included analyses of the effects of endocrine disruptors on human disease, further examples of endocrine disruptors promoting transgenerational behavioural effects, insights into effects of endocrine disruptors on epigenetic programming of primordial germ cells and the finding that endocrine disruptors can transgenerationally promote genetic mutations.

    • Michael K. Skinner
  • News and Views |

    Chronic cocaine exposure induces long-lasting, transcription-dependent changes in neuronal function. A genome-wide sequencing study shows how cocaine changes the epigenome to exert specific, long-lasting effects on neuronal transcription.

    • Anne E West
    Nature Neuroscience 18, 478–480
  • News and Views |

    How do enhancers facilitate transcription of plasticity-related genes in response to synaptic stimulation? A study implicates a specific histone modification and suggests that FOS regulates enhancer function.

    • Sietse Jonkman
    •  & Paul J Kenny
    Nature Neuroscience 17, 1291–1293