Analysis of Epigenetic Markers Following Methylation Modulator Treatments in Human Cell Lines

DNA storage in the nuclei of cells is important for both compaction and the regulation of gene expression. DNA packaging is altered by chemical modifications to the tails of the histone octamer around which the DNA is wrapped, specifically histones H3 and H4. Collectively these various histone marks make up a pattern which has been termed the “histone code”. The multiple interactions between histone modifications and gene expression is not well known in diseased cells. The objective of this study is to better understand the histone modification differences between normal and cancerous cells, and the potential for manipulating this code, due to the reversible state of modifications. By comparing malignant and non-malignant cells before and after treatment with inhibitors targeting histone modification pathways, we are able to observe changes in histone post-translational modification (PTM) levels. These changes indicate it is possible to change the histone pathways to effect gene expression.