When Metabolism and Epigenetics Converge

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Science  11 Jan 2013:
Vol. 339, Issue 6116, pp. 148-150
DOI: 10.1126/science.1233423

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Various cell types respond differently to the environment by using distinct circuits of genomic reprogramming. How does a fixed DNA blueprint allow flexibility in managing changes to environmental signals? Environmental inputs such as nutrition can modulate cell metabolism, and critical links between metabolism and epigenetic control—now widely thought to include chromatin remodeling, histone modifications, DNA methylation, and microRNA pathways (1)—are beginning to emerge (2, 3). Two reports in this issue, by Shimazu et al. (4) on page 211 and Shyh-Chang et al. (5) on page 222, provide insights into this connection.