ATP Dependent Chromatin Remodeling Enzymes in Embryonic Stem Cells
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Embryonic stem (ES) cells are pluripotent cells that can self renew or be induced to differentiate into multiple cell lineages, and thus have the potential to be utilized in regenerative medicine. Key pluripotency specific factors (Oct 4/Sox2/Nanog/Klf4) maintain the pluripotent state by activating expression of pluripotency specific genes and by inhibiting the expression of developmental regulators. Pluripotent ES cells are distinguished from differentiated cells by a specialized chromatin state that is required to epigenetically regulate the ES cell phenotype. Recent studies show that in addition to pluripotency specific factors, chromatin remodeling enzymes play an important role in regulating ES cell chromatin and the capacity to self-renew and to differentiate. Here we review recent studies that delineate the role of ATP dependent chromatin remodeling enzymes in regulating ES cell chromatin structure.