Epigenetics of Skeletal Diseases

  • Alvaro del Real
  • Leyre Riancho-Zarrabeitia
  • Laura López-Delgado
  • José A. Riancho
Genetics (M Johnson and S Ralston, Section Editors)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Genetics

Abstract

Purpose of Review

Epigenetic mechanisms modify gene activity in a stable manner without altering DNA sequence. They participate in the adaptation to the environment, as well as in the pathogenesis of common complex disorders. We provide an overview of the role of epigenetic mechanisms in bone biology and pathology.

Recent Findings

Extensive evidence supports the involvement of epigenetic mechanisms (DNA methylation, post-translational modifications of histone tails, and non-coding RNAs) in the differentiation of bone cells and mechanotransduction. A variety of epigenetic abnormalities have been described in patients with osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and skeletal cancers, but their actual pathogenetic roles are still unclear. A few drugs targeting epigenetic marks have been approved for neoplastic disorders, and many more are being actively investigated.

Summary

Advances in the field of epigenetics underscore the complex interactions between genetic and environmental factors as determinants of osteoporosis and other common disorders. Likewise, they help to explain the mechanisms by which prenatal and post-natal external factors, from nutrition to psychological stress, impact our body and influence the risk of later disease.

Keywords

Epigenetics DNA methylation Fractures Adaptation microRNA Histones 

Notes

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Leyre Riancho-Zarrabeitia reports travel grants from Amgen and Lilly outside the submitted work. José A. Riancho reports grants travel grants and speaker fees from Amgen and grants from the Intituto de Salud Carlos III. Laura López-Delgado reports travel grants from Amgen outside the submitted work and grants from the Intituto de Salud Carlos III. Alvaro del Real reports grants from the Intituto de Salud Carlos III.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

References

Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance ••Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alvaro del Real
    • 1
  • Leyre Riancho-Zarrabeitia
    • 2
  • Laura López-Delgado
    • 1
  • José A. Riancho
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Internal Medicine, Hospital U.M. Valdecilla IDIVALUniversity of CantabriaSantanderSpain
  2. 2.Service of RheumatologyHospital SierrallanaTorrelavegaSpain

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