epi·​ge·​nome ˌe-pə-ˈjē-ˌnōm How to pronounce epigenome (audio)
: the complement of chemical compounds that modify the expression and function of the genome
Access to the genes is controlled by the epigenome, a layer of millions of proteins and other marks that attach themselves to the genome. Nicholas Wade
Working out which genes are switched on or not involves looking at the epigenome, or the chemical "methyl" tags attached to genes. New Scientist

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The epigenome literally turns genes on and off, often based on environmental triggers and human behaviors such as smoking, eating an inflammatory diet or suffering a chronic lack of sleep. Sandee Lamotte, CNN, 27 Sep. 2022 Cells treated with Yamanaka factors, erases marks on the epigenome, losing their identity thus the reversal to the embryonic state (stem cell). Stephen Ibaraki, Forbes, 13 May 2022 Could the team activate telomerase to rejuvenate the epigenome? Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 David had long suspected that the epigenome was central to longevity. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 David published a great paper in Nature late last year showing that in mice Yamanaka gene therapy can safety reprogram the epigenome of the retina and restore vision in a mouse model of glaucoma. Alex Zhavoronkov, Forbes, 14 June 2021 Penick said the Indian jumping ant colonies used in the study were the same ones that were collected in India almost 20 years ago and were the first epigenome for the species sequenced. NBC News, 14 Apr. 2021 Molecular biologist David Sinclair of Harvard Medical School, who has long been on the hunt for antiaging strategies, has also looked for signs of aging in the epigenome. Kelly Servick, Science | AAAS, 2 Dec. 2020 The Stanford approach utilizes powerful agents known as Yamanaka factors, which reprogram a cell’s epigenome to its time zero, or embryonic state. Nicholas Wade, New York Times, 24 Mar. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'epigenome.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


epi- + genome, after epigenetic

First Known Use

1991, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of epigenome was in 1991

Dictionary Entries Near epigenome

Cite this Entry

“Epigenome.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/epigenome. Accessed 2 Dec. 2022.

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