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BRD4-mediated Regulation of Pluripotency

Epigenetic regulation and transcriptional reprogramming both play critical roles during stem cell differentiation and lineage commitment. The therapeutic application of stem cells requires the elucidation of how epigenetic factors control lineage commitment. BRD4, an epigenetic regulator and transcription factor, binds to acetylated histones in super-enhancer regions and regulates the expression of essential pluripotency genes. As a druggable target, BRD4 represents an attractive candidate for potential applications in therapeutics. In their recent STEM CELLS review article, researchers led by Sheetal Uppal (Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), Mumbai, India) discuss the central role of BRD4 in stem cell identity and potential applications of BRD4 inhibitors in stem cell-based therapeutics.