Epigenetics is the analysis of inheritable traits that are not transmitted by sequence information, including changes in DNA methylation. The methylation pattern of DNA is highly variable among cell types and developmental stages, and is influenced by disease processes and genetic factors. DNA methylation has been shown to influence chromatin packaging, therefore affecting transcription efficiency. Areas of study that rely heavily on DNA methylation analysis include DNA repair, cell cycle control, developmental biology, cancer research, and identification of biomarkers and potential drug targets.
NGS is an essential tool for DNA methylation studies, as it offers greater coverage density and flexibility at a cost-effective rate compared to alternative analysis techniques. Two primary methods are used for methyl sequencing: whole-genome sequencing, which offers a global profile of methylation patterns, and reduced representation bisulfite sequencing (RRBS), which describes exactly which cytosines are methylated.
ChIP-seq, is used to analyze how proteins interact with DNA. ChIP-seq incorporates chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) with DNA-seq to identify the binding sites of DNA-associated proteins and can be used to map global binding sites for any protein. The NEXTFLEX® ChIP-Seq Kit is used to accurately surveys interactions between protein, DNA, and RNA, enabling the interpretation of regulation events central to many biological processes and disease states.