The development of the central nervous system (CNS) is governed by networks of extrinsic and intrinsic molecular programs that together orchestrate precise gene regulation. For the past few years, significant progress has been made in the characterization of histone-modifying enzymes and the roles they play in transcriptional control by affecting chromatin structure. Importantly, recent studies have revealed dynamic changes in histone modifications over the course of neural cell-fate specification. Further understanding of physiological functions of histone-modifying enzymes and their molecular mechanisms of action in CNS development will provide crucial insights into the process of generating neural cell types with tremendous diversity. Here we discuss the recent advancement in understanding the roles of enzymes involved in histone acetylation and methylation during neural cell-type specification.
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