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Hypertens Res. 2019 Mar 13. doi: 10.1038/s41440-019-0248-0. [Epub ahead of print]

Epigenetic modification: a regulatory mechanism in essential hypertension.

Author information

1
Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Cardiovascular Health and Disease, Heart, Lung and Vascular Institute, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH, 45267, USA.
2
Division of Preventive Cardiology, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH, 45229, USA.
3
Division of Human Genetics, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH, 45229, USA.
4
Division of Preventive Cardiology, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH, 45229, USA. elaine.urbina@cchmc.org.

Abstract

Essential hypertension (EH) is a multifactorial disease of the cardiovascular system that is influenced by the interplay of genetic, epigenetic, and environmental factors. The molecular dynamics underlying EH etiopathogenesis is unknown; however, earlier studies have revealed EH-associated genetic variants. Nevertheless, this finding alone is not sufficient to explain the variability in blood pressure, suggesting that other risk factors are involved, such as epigenetic modifications. Therefore, this review highlights the potential contribution of well-defined epigenetic mechanisms in EH, specifically, DNA methylation, post-translational histone modifications, and microRNAs. We further emphasize global and gene-specific DNA methylation as one of the most well-studied hallmarks among all epigenetic modifications in EH. In addition, post-translational histone modifications, such as methylation, acetylation, and phosphorylation, are described as important epigenetic markers associated with EH. Finally, we discuss microRNAs that affect blood pressure by regulating master genes such as those implicated in the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system. These epigenetic modifications, which appear to contribute to various cardiovascular diseases, including EH, may be a promising research area for the development of novel future strategies for EH prevention and therapeutics.

KEYWORDS:

Epigenetic; Hypertension; Methylation; MicroRNA

PMID:
30867575
DOI:
10.1038/s41440-019-0248-0

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