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  • Promises and challenges in pharmacoepigenetics. Cambridge prisms, Precision medicine Smith, D. A., Sadler, M. C., Altman, R. B. 2023; 1: e18


    Pharmacogenetics, the study of how interindividual genetic differences affect drug response, does not explain all observed heritable variance in drug response. Epigenetic mechanisms, such as DNA methylation, and histone acetylation may account for some of the unexplained variances. Epigenetic mechanisms modulate gene expression and can be suitable drug targets and can impact the action of nonepigenetic drugs. Pharmacoepigenetics is the field that studies the relationship between epigenetic variability and drug response. Much of this research focuses on compounds targeting epigenetic mechanisms, called epigenetic drugs, which are used to treat cancers, immune disorders, and other diseases. Several studies also suggest an epigenetic role in classical drug response; however, we know little about this area. The amount of information correlating epigenetic biomarkers to molecular datasets has recently expanded due to technological advances, and novel computational approaches have emerged to better identify and predict epigenetic interactions. We propose that the relationship between epigenetics and classical drug response may be examined using data already available by (1) finding regions of epigenetic variance, (2) pinpointing key epigenetic biomarkers within these regions, and (3) mapping these biomarkers to a drug-response phenotype. This approach expands on existing knowledge to generate putative pharmacoepigenetic relationships, which can be tested experimentally. Epigenetic modifications are involved in disease and drug response. Therefore, understanding how epigenetic drivers impact the response to classical drugs is important for improving drug design and administration to better treat disease.

    View details for DOI 10.1017/pcm.2023.6

    View details for PubMedID 37560024