The Interaction between Metabolism and Genetics in Stem Cells
Many studies have demonstrated that cellular metabolism and its intermediate products, metabolites, are capable of producing hereditary genetic alterations of stem cells both in vitro and in vivo. This process, referred to as epigenesis, determines the alteration of an organism’s manifest characteristics without causing any mutations in its genetic condition.
Therefore, any alterations in metabolic pathways must have significant consequences on the stem cell pool both in processes of internal equilibrium (homeostasis) and in phenomena of proliferation and potential differentiation, directly influencing the deposition or removal of hereditary epigenetic markers that determine regular cellular operation.
In the literature, data concerning epigenetic modifications regulated by metabolism is constantly on the rise, although they require further functional studies.
Taking as an example of this mechanism, the metabolic regulation of adult muscular stem cells, a group of researchers coordinated for Sapienza by Prof. Viviana Moresi from the Department of Anatomical, Histological, Medical Legal and Locomotor Apparatus Sciences (SAIMLAL), revealed the significance of cellular metabolism in the homeostasis of stem cells. The results of the study were presented and discussed in a review published on Stem Cell Reports.
“These new pathways,” concludes Prof. Moresi, “are based on the dynamic interaction between metabolism and epigenetics in the biology of stem cells. Indeed, they are not only significant towards understanding the homeostasis of tissues in physio-pathological conditions, but also to determine the conditions of in vitro cultures that accurately support normal cellular physiology.”
Interplay between metabolites and the epigenome in regulating embryonic and adult stem cell potency and maintenance - Moresi, V. Renzini, A. Adamo, S. Harvey, A. Caretti, G. Stem Cell Reports (8 October 2019) DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.stemcr.2019.09.003
Viviana Moresi - email@example.com
Department of Anatomical, Histological, Medical Legal and Locomotor Apparatus Sciences