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The complex processes necessary for embryogenesis require a gene regulatory network that is complex and systematic. Gene expression regulates development and organogenesis, but this process is altered and fine-tuned by epigenetic regulators that facilitate changes in the chromatin landscape. Epigenetic regulation of embryogenesis adjusts the chromatin structure by modifying both DNA through methylation and nucleosomes through posttranslational modifications of histone tails. The zebrafish is a well-characterized model organism that is a quintessential tool for studying developmental biology. With external fertilization, low cost and high fecundity, the zebrafish are an efficient tool for studying early developmental stages. Genetic manipulation can be performed in vivo resulting in quick identification of gene function. Large-scale genome analyses including RNA sequencing, chromatin immunoprecipitation and chromatin structure all are feasible in the zebrafish. In this review, we highlight the key events in zebrafish development where epigenetic regulation plays a critical role from the early stem cell stages through differentiation and organogenesis. © The Author(s) 2021. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:


Alissa D Marchione, Zanshé Thompson, Katie L Kathrein. DNA methylation and histone modifications are essential for regulation of stem cell formation and differentiation in zebrafish development. Briefings in functional genomics. 2021 Mar 30

PMID: 33782688

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