Published online Dec 26, 2010. doi: 10.4252/wjsc.v2.i6.121
Revised: October 4, 2010
Accepted: October 11, 2010
Published online: December 26, 2010
The understanding of mechanisms leading to cellular differentiation is the main aim of numerous studies. Accessibility of DNA to transcription factors depends on local chromatin structure and chromatin compaction inhibits gene transcription. Histone acetylation correlates with an open chromatin structure and increased gene expression. Gene transcription levels are changed in early embryonic stem cells differentiation in a tissue-specific manner and epigenetic marks are modified, including increased global acetylation levels. Manipulation of histone deacetylases activity might be an interesting tool to generate populations of specific cell types for transplantation purposes. Thus, this review aims to show recent findings on histone acetylation, a post translational modification and its manipulation in embryonic stem cells differentiation.