Definition of epigenetics in US English:


plural noun

  • treated as singular The study of changes in organisms caused by modification of gene expression rather than alteration of the genetic code itself.

    ‘epigenetics has transformed the way we think about genomes’
    • ‘Epigenetics and the sudden realization that we are superorganisms in part controlled by microbes we didn't even know existed means that, for now, riddles like cancer and aging seem hopelessly complex.’
    • ‘Using the field of epigenetics - the way the body's cells control which genes are off or on - it is possible to identify proteins in the body that determine a cancer cells fate, whether it grows or not, and destroy them.’
    • ‘Epigenetics could re-write the rule book on how we treat the disease.’
    • ‘The interdisciplinary team led by Dr. Feinberg, who has pioneered the study of epigenetics in cancer, will develop tools to create comprehensive, genome-wide information about epigenetics and then apply that information to the study of autism and bipolar disorder.’
    • ‘The Harvard center will strive to develop new technologies for genomic molecular imaging, while the Johns Hopkins center will be devoted to advancing the emerging field of epigenetics.’