JOURNAL OF CELLULAR PHYSIOLOGY, vol.231, no.11, pp.2393-2401, 2016 (SCI-Expanded)
Changes in epigenetic marks are known to be important regulatory factors in stem cell fate determination and differentiation. In the past years, the investigation of the epigenetic regulation of stem cell biology has largely focused on embryonic stem cells (ESCs). Contrarily, less is known about the epigenetic control of gene expression during differentiation of adult stem cells (AdSCs). Among AdSCs, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are the most investigated stem cell population because of their enormous potential for therapeutic applications in regenerative medicine and tissue engineering. In this review, we analyze the main studies addressing the epigenetic changes in MSC landscape during in vitro cultivation and replicative senescence, as well as follow osteocyte, chondrocyte, and adipocyte differentiation. In these studies, histone acetylation, DNA methylation, and miRNA expression are among the most investigated phenomena. We describe also epigenetic changes that are associated with in vitro MSC trans-differentiation. Although at the at initial stage, the epigenetics of MSCs promise to have profound implications for stem cell basic and applied research. (C) 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.