Epigenetics is such a young and expanding field that it’s tough to find a lot of good reference material out there. And what you can find is usually scattered all across any number of places on the World Wide Web. That’s why we are so stoked to see the new epigenetics text, Epigenetics: A Reference Manual edited by Jeffrey Craig and Nicholas Wong from Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI) in Victoria Austrailia.
The editors put together a comprehensive and unique text that will benefit anyone involved in epigenetics, from young undergrads to seasoned professors. Craig and Wong divided the book into three distinct sections, which give the text much more utility than your standard classroom textbook.
Three Epigenetic Sections for Easy Reference
The first section delivers a thorough background of epigenetics research and concepts, summarizing the current state of the epigenetics landscape. For instance the chapter Early Life Environment, DNA Methylation and Behavior by Moshe Szyf gives a really in depth look at what is known about the role of DNA methylation at the interface between the environment and the genome, and how further understanding of that mechanism may change the future of medicine and bridge the gap between social and biological sciences.
Part two covers the ins-and-outs of common epigenetics lab techniques in gritty detail, even providing actual protocols. In the chapter ChIP-Sequencing, Sebastian Lunke and Assam El-Osta give step-by-step instructions for generating ChIP DNA that’s ready to go into any of today’s most advanced sequencers, and also discuss how to validate and analyze the data once you have it.
The final section discusses where and how to find epigenetics resources. We were, of course, won over immediately when Nick Wong mentioned EpiGenie in his write up of online references, but the chapters on bioinformatics tools for massively parallel sequencing and educational resources also pulls together information into one place that’s been sorely needed within the community.
EpiGenie’s Take On Epigenetics: A Reference Manual
We think this manual will become essential to anyone working in epigenetics or related fields. The authors for each of the 26 chapters comprise an all-star cast of leaders in epigenetics research. Just take a look down the list of contributors, and we’re sure you’ll agree that Epigenetics: A Reference Manual will soon become a key information resource on the intriguing and evolving world of epigenetics. Our only complaint? That it’s not pocket-sized and waterproof, so that we can carry it with us everywhere.
Check out the list of topics & authors, and order your own copy of Epigenetics: A Reference Manual at the Horizon Press Website.