Text Book – Epigenetic Cancer Therapy

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Chapter 10 – Synthetic biology and cell engineering—deriving new insights into cancer epigenetics.
Franklin KA, Haynes KA. (2023) Translational Epigenetics: Epigenetic Cancer Therapy (Second Edition). Academic Press. pp 195-210

The latest edition of Epigenetic Cancer Therapy includes a chapter that explores how scientists are using synthetic biology and cell engineering techniques, collectively known as epigenetic engineering, to develop powerful tools for understanding and manipulating the regulation of genes in cancer cells. In this chapter, we explain how four general technologies in epigenetic engineering have been used in cancer research. The first two technologies are genetic reporters and protein reporters, which allow us to closely monitor the changes in gene expression inside living cells. The other two technologies are epigenome editing and epigenome actuation. Epigenome editing enables scientists to make precise changes to the chemical modifications on the DNA and proteins that affect gene activity. Epigenome actuation, on the other hand, involves using synthetic molecules to activate or deactivate groups of genes in cancer cells. One exciting aspect of epigenome editing and actuation is that they offer advantages over traditional epigenetic drugs and genetic knockdowns when studying cancer epigenetics. Combining cell engineering with cancer research has the potential to revolutionize our understanding of cancer and may lead to the development of more effective therapies in the future.

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