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WIREs Syst Biol Med
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Comparative epigenomics: defining and utilizing epigenomic variations across species, time‐course, and individuals

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Epigenomic profiling, by revealing genome‐wide distributions of epigenetic modifications, generated a large amount of structural information about the chromosomes. Epigenomic analysis has quickly become a big data science, posing tremendous challenges on its translation into knowledge. To meet this challenge, comparative analysis of epigenomes, dubbed comparative epigenomics, has emerged as an active research area. Here, we summarize the recent developments in comparative epigenomic analyses into three major directions, namely the comparisons across species, the time‐course of a biological process, and individuals. We review the main ideas, methods, and findings in each direction, and discuss the implications to understanding the regulatory functions of the genomes. WIREs Syst Biol Med 2014, 6:345–352. doi: 10.1002/wsbm.1274 This article is categorized under: Analytical and Computational Methods > Analytical Methods Laboratory Methods and Technologies > Genetic/Genomic Methods
Dimensions of epigenomic comparisons. Each cube represents an epigenomic dataset.
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Using epigenomic conservation together with genomic conservation for annotating regulatory sequences.
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The inferred co‐evolution properties of the genome, the epigenome, and the transcriptome by Xiao et al.
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