Chromatin in pluripotent embryonic stem cells and differentiation

Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2006 Jul;7(7):540-6. doi: 10.1038/nrm1938. Epub 2006 May 17.


Embryonic stem (ES) cells are unique in that they are pluripotent and have the ability to self-renew. The molecular mechanisms that underlie these two fundamental properties are largely unknown. We discuss how unique properties of chromatin in ES cells contribute to the maintenance of pluripotency and the determination of differentiation properties.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Differentiation / physiology*
  • Cell Nucleus / metabolism
  • Cell Nucleus / ultrastructure
  • Chromatin / metabolism*
  • Chromatin / ultrastructure
  • Histones / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Pluripotent Stem Cells / cytology
  • Pluripotent Stem Cells / physiology*
  • Transcription, Genetic


  • Chromatin
  • Histones