Prenatal stress heightened adult chronic pain

This 2019 McGill rodent study found: “Prenatal stress exacerbates pain after injury. Analysis of mRNA expression of genes related to epigenetic regulation and stress responses in the frontal cortex and hippocampus, brain structures implicated in chronic pain, showed distinct sex and region-specific patterns of dysregulation. In general, mRNA expression was most frequently altered in the … Continue reading Prenatal stress heightened adult chronic pain

Emotional responses and BDNF methylation

This 2019 German human study found: “A critical role of BDNF [brain-derived neurotrophic factor] methylation in human amygdala response to negative emotional stimuli, whereby: High BDNF methylation rates were for the first time shown to be associated with a high reactivity in the amygdala; and High BDNF methylation and high amygdala reactivity were associated with … Continue reading Emotional responses and BDNF methylation

PNAS politics in the name of science

This 2019 Germany/Canada human fetal cell study was a Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America direct submission: “In a human hippocampal progenitor cell line, we assessed the short- and long-term effects of GC [glucocorticoid] exposure during neurogenesis on messenger RNA expression and DNA methylation profiles. Our data suggest … Continue reading PNAS politics in the name of science

Epigenetic transgenerational inheritance mechanisms that lead to prostate disease

This 2019 Washington rodent study found: “Ancestral exposure to the toxicant vinclozolin induces an epigenetic transgenerational increase in susceptibility to prostate pathology in F3 [male great-grandchildren] generation rats. These results are in agreement with previous studies which found a transgenerational increase in rates of prostatic epithelial atrophy, cystic hyperplasia, and prostatitis in the transgenerational F3 … Continue reading Epigenetic transgenerational inheritance mechanisms that lead to prostate disease

Melatonin and depression

This 2018 Polish review subject was the relationship between melatonin and depression: “Although melatonin has been known about and referred to for almost 50 years, the relationship between melatonin and depression is still not clear. In this review, we summarize current knowledge about the genetic and epigenetic regulation of enzymes involved in melatonin synthesis and … Continue reading Melatonin and depression

Using salivary microRNA to diagnose autism

This 2016 New York human study found: “Measurement of salivary miRNA in this pilot study of subjects with mild ASD [autism spectrum disorder] demonstrated differential expression of 14 miRNAs that are: expressed in the developing brain, impact mRNAs related to brain development, and correlate with neurodevelopmental measures of adaptive behavior.” Some problems with current diagnostic … Continue reading Using salivary microRNA to diagnose autism

Epigenetic contributions to hypertension

This 2016 Australian review subject was epigenetic contributions to hypertension: “Hypertension (HT) affects more than 1 billion people globally and is a major risk factor for stroke, chronic kidney disease, and myocardial infarction. Essential hypertension (EH) is a complex, polygenic condition with no single causative agent. There is increasing evidence that epigenetic modifications are as … Continue reading Epigenetic contributions to hypertension

Beneficial epigenetic effects of mild stress with social support during puberty

This 2016 Pennsylvania rodent study found: “Stress in the context of social support experienced over the pubertal window can promote epigenetic reprogramming in the brain to increase the resilience to age-related cognitive decline in females. These findings are actually consistent with previous studies showing that some amount of adversity, or adversity under more favorable circumstances … Continue reading Beneficial epigenetic effects of mild stress with social support during puberty

A molecular study of the epigenetic regulation of memory

This 2015 Norwegian rodent study provided: “New insights into the molecular underpinnings of synaptic plasticity. We report the first global transcriptome [all RNA found in specific cells] analysis of in vivo synaptic plasticity, using the well-established model of LTP [long-term potentiation, an increase in synaptic strength that underlies memory] in the rat dentate gyrus [a … Continue reading A molecular study of the epigenetic regulation of memory

Transgenerational epigenetic programming with stress and microRNA

This 2015 Pennsylvania rodent study found: “Sperm miRs [microRNAs, a small non-coding RNA that has a role in gene expression] function to reduce maternal mRNA [messenger RNA, a large RNA that carries codes for protein production] stores in early zygotes, ultimately reprogramming gene expression in the offspring hypothalamus and recapitulating the offspring stress dysregulation phenotype.” … Continue reading Transgenerational epigenetic programming with stress and microRNA