Organisms must be able to rapidly alter gene expression in response to changes in their nutrient environment. This review summarizes evidence that epigenetic modifications of chromatin depend on particular metabolites of intermediary metabolism, enabling the facile regulation of gene expression in tune with metabolic state. Nutritional or dietary control of chromatin is an often-overlooked, yet fundamental regulatory mechanism directly linked to human physiology. Nutrient-sensitive epigenetic marks are dynamic, suggesting rapid turnover, and may have functions beyond the regulation of gene transcription, including pH regulation and as carbon sources in cancer cells.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology