Epigenetic targets in human neoplasms

Tamer E. Fandy, Steven D. Gore

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Epigenetic silencing of tumor suppressor genes is a salient feature of tumor cells. Re-expression of epigenetically silenced genes is a feasible and achievable strategy for cancer treatment. DNA methylation is the most characterized epigenetic silencing mechanism and the reversal of DNA methylation, genetically or pharmacologically, induces gene re-expression and proliferation arrest in tumor cells. Other epigenetic targets, such as histone acetylation and methylation, are also rational drug targets, and several small-molecule modulators of histone acetylation and methylation are currently under development or already in clinical trials. Epigenetic deregulation of miRNAs induces aberrant expression of miRNAs, which have been associated with the development and progression of cancer. The reversal of DNA methylation can induce the re-expression of miRNAs, and oligonucleotides can silence aberrantly expressed miRNAs. Evaluating the combination of different epigenetic modifiers and ensuring their optimization are the next challenges towards the establishment of epigenetic therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-232
Number of pages12
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • DNA methyltransferases inhibitor
  • epigenetics
  • epigenome
  • histone acetylation
  • histone methylation
  • miRNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Epigenetic targets in human neoplasms'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this