Crosstalk between epigenetics and metabolism—Yin and Yang of histone demethylases and methyltransferases in cancer

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Histone methylation is an epigenetic modification of chromatin undergoing dynamic changes and balancing tissue-specific demands of proliferation and differentiation. In cancer, aberrant histone methylation can facilitate oncogenic and tumor suppression programs by modulating gene expression. Histone remodelers such as lysine methyltransferases and lysine demethylases are seemingly opposite or contrary forces but may be part of an interconnected network complementing each other. We identify several layers of molecular communication where epigenetic master regulators engage in crosstalk between tumor metabolism and histone remodeling. Epigenetic master regulators have the ability to cooperate with members of the transcriptional machinery, DNA methyltransferases, as well as other histone modifiers. High-throughput sequencing and omics data in combination with cancer systems biology analysis have the power to prioritize regulatory events epigenome-wide.

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