Epigenetics, the epicenter of the hypoxic response

Jenny A Watson, Chris J Watson, Amanda McCann, John Baugh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

118 Citations (Scopus)


It is becoming increasingly apparent that epigenetics plays a crucial role in the cellular response to hypoxia. Such epigenetic regulation may work hand in hand with the hypoxia-induced transcription factor (HIF) family or may contribute in a more substantial way to the maintenance of a hypoxia-adapted cellular phenotype long after HIF has initiated the immediate response pathways. In this article we discuss the current research implicating epigenetic mechanisms in the cellular response to hypoxic environments. This includes; the role of epigenetics in both the stabilization and binding of HIF to its transcriptional targets, the role of histone demethylase enzymes following direct HIF transactivation, and finally, the impact of hypoxic environments on global patterns of histone modifications and DNA methylation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)293-6
Number of pages4
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 16 May 2010


  • Animals
  • Cell Hypoxia
  • Epigenesis, Genetic
  • Histones
  • Humans
  • Hypoxia-Inducible Factor 1, alpha Subunit
  • Protein Stability
  • Transcription, Genetic


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