Gatekeepers of chromatin: Small metabolites elicit big changes in gene expression

Salma Kaochar, Benjamin P. Tu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Eukaryotes are constantly fine-tuning their gene expression programs in response to the demands of the environment and the availability of nutrients. Such dynamic regulation of the genome necessitates versatile chromatin architecture. Rapid changes in transcript levels are brought about via a wide range of post-translational modifications of the histone proteins that control chromatin structure. Many enzymes responsible for these modifications have been identified and they require various metabolic cofactors or substrates for their activity. Herein, we highlight recent developments that have begun to reveal particular cellular metabolites that might in fact be underappreciated regulators of gene expression through their ability to modulate particular histone modifications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)477-483
Number of pages7
JournalTrends in biochemical sciences
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2012


  • Acetyl-CoA
  • Acetylation
  • Epigenetics
  • Histones
  • Methylation
  • S-adenosylmethionine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Gatekeepers of chromatin: Small metabolites elicit big changes in gene expression'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this