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Review
, 31 (6), 290-9

Epigenetic Modifications and Long Noncoding RNAs Influence Pancreas Development and Function

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Review

Epigenetic Modifications and Long Noncoding RNAs Influence Pancreas Development and Function

Luis Arnes et al. Trends Genet.

Abstract

Insulin-producing β cells within the pancreatic islet of Langerhans are responsible for maintaining glucose homeostasis; the loss or malfunction of β cells results in diabetes mellitus. Recent advances in cell purification strategies and sequencing technologies as well as novel molecular tools have revealed that epigenetic modifications and long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) represent an integral part of the transcriptional mechanisms regulating pancreas development and β cell function. Importantly, these findings have uncovered a new layer of gene regulation in the pancreas that can be exploited to enhance the restoration and/or repair of β cells to treat diabetes.

Keywords: epigenetic; islet; long noncoding RNAs; pancreas; β cells.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1. Epigenetics and pancreas development
Schematic representation of pancreas development with epigenetic modifiers involved in the process depicted in boxes. (ES) embryonic stem cell, (E) Endoderm, (FE) Foregut endoderm, (Lv) Liver, (PP) pancreas progenitors, (EP) Endocrine progenitors, (Exo) Exocrine cell.
Figure 2
Figure 2. De-differentiation and trans-differentiation of β-cells
Recent examples of environmental and genetic factors that cause β-cell dedifferentiation and transdifferentiation.

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