Transgenerationally inherited epigenetic effects of fetal alcohol exposure

The fourth paper of Transgenerational epigenetic inheritance week was a 2016 German rodent study of transgenerational epigenetic effects of alcohol: “We investigated 2 generations of offspring born to alcohol-treated mothers. Here, we show that memory impairment and reduced synthesis of acetylcholine occurs in both F1 (exposed to ethanol in utero) and F2 generation (never been exposed to … Continue reading Transgenerationally inherited epigenetic effects of fetal alcohol exposure

Transgenerational pathological traits induced by prenatal immune activation

The third paper of Transgenerational epigenetic inheritance week was a 2016 Swiss rodent study of immune system epigenetic effects: “Our study demonstrates for, we believe, the first time that prenatal immune activation can negatively affect brain and behavioral functions in multiple generations. These findings thus highlight a novel pathological aspect of this early-life adversity in shaping … Continue reading Transgenerational pathological traits induced by prenatal immune activation

Experience-induced transgenerational programming of neuronal structure and functions

The second paper of Transgenerational epigenetic inheritance week was a 2017 German/Israeli review focused on: “The inter- and transgenerational effects of stress experience prior to and during gestation..the concept of stress-induced (re-)programming in more detail by highlighting epigenetic mechanisms and particularly those affecting the development of monoaminergic transmitter systems, which constitute the brain’s reward system..we offer … Continue reading Experience-induced transgenerational programming of neuronal structure and functions

Transgenerational effects of early environmental insults on aging and disease

The first paper of Transgenerational epigenetic inheritance week was a 2017 Canadian/Netherlands review that’s organized as follows: “First, we address mechanisms of developmental and transgenerational programming of disease and inheritance. Second, we discuss experimental and clinical findings linking early environmental determinants to adverse aging trajectories in association with possible parental contributions and sex-specific effects. Third, we … Continue reading Transgenerational effects of early environmental insults on aging and disease

It’s transgenerational epigenetic inheritance week!

Transgenerational epigenetic inheritance is a subject whose time has come. This week I sequentially curated two 2017 reviews and two 2016 studies of the subject, and ended with a meta-analysis of human preventive treatments: Transgenerational effects of early environmental insults on aging and disease Experience-induced transgenerational programming of neuronal structure and functions Transgenerational pathological traits … Continue reading It’s transgenerational epigenetic inheritance week!

A review of epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of reproductive disease

This 2015 Washington review of epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of reproductive disease defined transgenerational effects as follows: “In considering transgenerational phenomena it is important to distinguish between direct exposure effects versus germline (sperm or egg) mediated transgenerational events. When a gestating F0 generation female is exposed the F0 generation female, the F1 generation fetus and the … Continue reading A review of epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of reproductive disease

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

DNA methylation and childhood adversity

This 2017 Georgia human review covered: “Recent studies, primarily focused on the findings from human studies, to indicate the role of DNA methylation in the associations between childhood adversity and cardiometabolic disease in adulthood. In particular, we focused on DNA methylation modifications in genes regulating the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis as well as the immune system.” Recommendations … Continue reading DNA methylation and childhood adversity

Can researchers make a difference in their fields?

The purpose and finding of this 2017 UK meta-analysis of human epigenetics and cognitive abilities was: “A meta-analysis of the relationship between blood-based DNA methylation and cognitive function. We identified [two] methylation sites that are linked to an aspect of executive function and global cognitive ability. The latter finding relied on a relatively crude cognitive … Continue reading Can researchers make a difference in their fields?

Epigenetics research and evolution

This 2017 UK essay was a longish review of how epigenetics and other research has informed evolutionary theory: “There are several processes by which directed evolutionary change occurs—targeted mutation, gene transposition, epigenetics, cultural change, niche construction and adaptation. Evolution is an ongoing set of iterative interactions between organisms and the environment..Directionality is introduced by the … Continue reading Epigenetics research and evolution