Non-PC alert: Treating the mother’s obesity symptoms positively affects the post-surgery offspring

This 2013 Quebec human epigenetic study found that DNA methylation – chemical modification that causes genes to express differently – as durably detectable between siblings born before and after their mother’s gastric bypass surgery.

The younger, post-maternal-surgery siblings were found to have DNA indicating reduced risks of developing diabetes and heart disease when compared with the DNA of their older, pre-maternal-surgery siblings. The mothers’ average weight loss was 103 lbs.

It was notable to see this famous research reference cited:

“Prenatal exposure to famine during the Dutch hunger winter of 1944 is associated with obesity with less DNA methylation (“undermethylation”) of the imprinted insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) gene in exposed offspring relative to their unexposed siblings.”

It was also notable to see the reactions to this non-politically-correct finding. For one example, this news article was in full-fledged denial, stating:

“Nor do investigators know whether a father’s weight loss might have a similar impact. It’s also possible that epigenetic inheritance wasn’t at play.”

Other news coverage expressed the memes that:

  • Pregnant women can abuse anything and everything with impunity without any consequent damage to their fetus, and
  • There wasn’t the tiniest chance that the mother was involved in any of their child’s adverse outcomes. When the child’s diverted developmental and behavioral consequences manifested, political correctness would dictate that these arose out of some unknown factors.

http://www.pnas.org/content/110/28/11439.full “Differential methylation in glucoregulatory genes of offspring born before vs. after maternal gastrointestinal bypass surgery”

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