SC8 Epigenomics and Impact for Drug Safety Sciences

Jennifer Marlowe , Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research, Cambridge, MA
It is becoming increasingly clear that some of the earliest events preceding the development of overt pathologies, including those arising from the exposure to environmental and pharmaceutical agents, involve perturbations of the epigenome.  Recent advances in technologies for mapping and characterizing the mammalian epigenome are generating new opportunities for exploring the relationship between epigenetic modifications, human disease and the therapeutic potential of pharmaceutical drugs. While the best examples for xenobiotic-induced epigenetic perturbations come from the field of non-genotoxic carcinogenesis, there is growing evidence for the relevance of epigenetic mechanisms associated with a wide range of disease areas, targets, and drug exposures. The application of epigenomic profiling technologies to drug safety sciences has great potential for providing novel insights into the molecular basis of long-lasting cellular perturbations, including increased susceptibility to disease and/or toxicity, memory of prior immune stimulation and/or drug exposure, and transgenerational effects.