A couple of articles in the latest Cancer Discovery looked at some rather promising, and perhaps a little unexpected, findings pertaining to epigenetic therapy.
What are epigenetics?
If you read up on epigenetics in the medical journals, you will come across some of the most dense and complex articles I’ve ever come across in cancer biology. That said, there are a few readable examples around such as Bird’s (2007) short insight piece in Nature.
Personally, I tend to think of epigenetics – in very simple terms – as changes in gene function that can occur without a change in the sequence of the DNA. This means that we see things such as DNA methylation (where something new is added) and gene silencing (where something important is somehow switched off or lost). A classic change in cancer that often appears in many tumour types is PTEN loss, for example.
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Epigenetics – an emerging new potential treatment for lung cancer?
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