The role of poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation in epigenetic events

Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2009 Jan;41(1):60-5. doi: 10.1016/j.biocel.2008.07.023. Epub 2008 Aug 14.


Epigenetic refers to a range of heritable chromatin modifications including DNA methylation, histone modifications, remodeling of nucleosomes and higher order chromatin modifications. In the framework of chromatin remodeling activities, the poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation of nuclear proteins catalyzed by PARPs, particularly PARP-1 and PARP-2, plays a fundamental role and as such have the potential to orchestrate various chromatin-based biological tasks including transcription, DNA repair and differentiation. In this review, we propose a short overview of the more recent experimental data that shed light on the role of poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation in the translation of the histone code. We will essentially focus on the different mechanisms by which PARP activity regulates the global chromatin environment and how this affects cellular pathways.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chromatin / metabolism
  • DNA Methylation
  • DNA Repair
  • Epigenesis, Genetic*
  • Humans
  • Nucleosomes / metabolism
  • Poly Adenosine Diphosphate Ribose / metabolism
  • Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerases / genetics*
  • Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerases / metabolism*
  • Transcription, Genetic


  • Chromatin
  • Nucleosomes
  • Poly Adenosine Diphosphate Ribose
  • Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerases