Perspectives on the interactions between metabolism, redox, and epigenetics in plants

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Epigenetic modifications of chromatin usually involve consumption of key metabolites and redox-active molecules. Primary metabolic flux and cellular redox states control the activity of enzymes involved in chromatin modifications, such as DNA methylation, histone acetylation, and histone methylation, which in turn regulate gene expression and/or enzymatic activity of specific metabolic and redox pathways. Thus, coordination of metabolism and epigenetic regulation of gene expression is critical to control growth and development in response to the cellular environment. Much has been learned from animal and yeast cells with regard to the interplay between metabolism and epigenetic regulation, and now the metabolic control of epigenetic pathways in plants is an increasing area of study. Epigenetic mechanisms are largely similar between plant and mammalian cells, but plants display very important differences in both metabolism and metabolic/redox signaling pathways. In this review, we summarize recent developments in the field and discuss perspectives of studying interactions between plant epigenetic and metabolism/redox systems, which are essential for plant adaptation to environmental conditions.

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