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Genomic Enhancers in Brain Health and Disease

Department of Neurobiology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL 35294, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Genes 2019, 10(1), 43;
Received: 27 November 2018 / Revised: 8 January 2019 / Accepted: 9 January 2019 / Published: 14 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epigenetics, Environment, and Brain Disorders)
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Enhancers are non-coding DNA elements that function in cis to regulate transcription from nearby genes. Through direct interactions with gene promoters, enhancers give rise to spatially and temporally precise gene expression profiles in distinct cell or tissue types. In the brain, the accurate regulation of these intricate expression programs across different neuronal classes gives rise to an incredible cellular and functional diversity. Newly developed technologies have recently allowed more accurate enhancer mapping and more sophisticated enhancer manipulation, producing rapid progress in our understanding of enhancer biology. Furthermore, identification of disease-linked genetic variation in enhancer regions has highlighted the potential influence of enhancers in brain health and disease. This review outlines the key role of enhancers as transcriptional regulators, reviews the current understanding of enhancer regulation in neuronal development, function and dysfunction and provides our thoughts on how enhancers can be targeted for technological and therapeutic goals. View Full-Text
Keywords: enhancer; transcription; eRNA; neuron; gene regulation; epigenetic enhancer; transcription; eRNA; neuron; gene regulation; epigenetic

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Carullo, N.V.N.; Day, J.J. Genomic Enhancers in Brain Health and Disease. Genes 2019, 10, 43.

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