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The "epigenetics" concept was first described in 1942. Thus far, chemical modifications on histones, DNA, and RNA have emerged as three important building blocks of epigenetic modifications. Many epigenetic modifications have been intensively studied and found to be involved in most essential biological processes as well as human diseases, including cancer. Precisely and quantitatively mapping over 100 [1], 17 [2], and 160 [3] different known types of epigenetic modifications in histone, DNA, and RNA is the key to understanding the role of epigenetic modifications in gene regulation in diverse biological processes. With the rapid development of sequencing technologies, scientists are able to detect specific epigenetic modifications with various quantitative, high-resolution, whole-genome/transcriptome approaches. Here, we summarize recent advances in epigenetic modification sequencing technologies, focusing on major histone, DNA, and RNA modifications in mammalian cells.

Original publication




Journal article


Cell death and differentiation

Publication Date



Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Nuffield Department of Medicine, University of Oxford, Oxford, OX3 7FZ, UK.