J Korean Assoc Maxillofac Plast Reconstr Surg.  2008 Mar;30(2):205-212.

Understanding of epigenetics and dna methylation

  • 1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, School of Dentistry, Kyung-Hee University, Seoul, Korea. omsojh@khu.ac.kr
  • 2The Jane and Jerry Weintraub Center for Reconstructive Biotechnology, Department of Advanced Prothodontics, School of Dentistry, UCLA, USA.


Genetic variation in the human genome occurs on various levels; from the single nucleotide polymorphism to large, microscopically visible chromosome anomalies. It can be present in many forms, including variable number of tandem repeat (VNTRs; e.g., mini- and microsatellites), presence/absence of transposable elements (e.g., Alu elements), single nucleotide polymorphisms, and structural alterations (e.g., copy number variation, segmental duplication, inversion, translocation). Until recently SNPs were thought to be the main source of genetic and phenotypic human variation. However, the use of methods such as array comparative genomic hybridization (array CGH) and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) have revealed the presence of copy number variations(CNVs) ranging from kilobases (kb) to megabases (Mb) in the human genome. There is great interest in the possibility that CNVs play a role in the etiology of common disease such as HIV-1/AIDS, diabetes, autoimmune disease, heart disease and cancer. The discovery of widespread copy number variation in human provides insights into genetic variability among populations and provides a foundation for studies of the contribution of CNVs to evolution and disease.


Genetic variation; Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP); Copy number variation (CNV)

MeSH Terms

Coat Protein Complex I
Comparative Genomic Hybridization
Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1
DNA Methylation
DNA Transposable Elements
Genetic Variation
Genome, Human
Heart Diseases
In Situ Hybridization
Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide
Segmental Duplications, Genomic
Tandem Repeat Sequences
Coat Protein Complex I
DNA Transposable Elements
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