Role of MeCP2, DNA methylation, and HDACs in regulating synapse function

Ege T Kavalali, Erika D. Nelson, Lisa M Monteggia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Over the past several years there has been intense effort to delineate the role of epigenetic factors, including methyl-CpG-binding protein 2, histone deacetylases, and DNA methyltransferases, in synaptic function. Studies from our group as well as others have shown that these key epigenetic mechanisms are critical regulators of synapse formation, maturation, as well as function. Although most studies have identified selective deficits in excitatory neurotransmission, the latest work has also uncovered deficits in inhibitory neurotransmission as well. Despite the rapid pace of advances, the exact synaptic mechanisms and gene targets that mediate these effects on neurotransmission remain unclear. Nevertheless, these findings not only open new avenues for understanding neuronal circuit abnormalities associated with neurodevelopmental disorders but also elucidate potential targets for addressing the pathophysiology of several intractable neuropsychiatric disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)250-256
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of neurodevelopmental disorders
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2011


  • DNA methylation
  • HDAC
  • MeCP2
  • Neurotransmission
  • Synaptic plasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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