Wednesday, March 24, 2010

With respect to 'epigenomics'....

Be sure to check this recent Correspondance over at Nature expressing reservations regarding a recent Editorial on the International Human Epigenome Consortium.

I've commented before on the loose use of the word "Epigenetics" [What is Epigenetics? An operational definition], so I found this quote particularly interesting:

With respect to 'epigenomics', we wish to stress that chromatin 'marks' and local chemical modifications of DNA, such as methylation, are the consequences of DNA-sequence-specific interactions of proteins (and RNA) that recruit modifying enzymes to specific targets. They are thus directly dependent on the genomic sequence. Such marks are the effects of sequence-specific regulatory interactions, not the causes of cell-type-specific gene expression.
The authors also direct the reader to a letter by eight prominent scientists expressing serious reservations about the scientific basis of the epigenome project (which you can access here)

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