Navigation Links
Epigenetics mechanism may help explain effects of mom's nutrition on her children's health
Date:3/11/2013

This press release is available in Spanish.

Pioneering studies by U. S. Department of Agriculture-funded research molecular geneticist Robert A. Waterland are helping explain how the foods that soon-to-be-moms eat in the days and weeks around the time of conceptionor what's known as periconceptional nutritionmay affect the way genes function in her children, and her children's health.

In an early study, Waterland and co-investigators examined gene function of 50 healthy children living in rural villages in the West African nation of The Gambia. The study has shaped some of Waterland's current research into the effects of nutrition on what geneticists refer to as epigenetic mechanisms. Those mechanisms can impact, for example, the levels at which an everyday biochemical process, DNA methylation, occurs at regions of certain genes. DNA methylation is essential for cell development and for stabilizing cell function.

In the West Africa study, Waterland and co-researchers found that levels of DNA methylation were higher at regions of five genes in children conceived during the peak rainy season months of August and September, when food would typically have been less available to their mothers.

According to Waterland, two of the five genes in which elevated DNA methylation occurred warrant further study because they are associated with risk of disease. Specifically, the SLITRK1 gene is associated with Tourette's syndrome, and the PAX8 gene is linked to hypothyroidism.

The researchers attributed the epigenetic variation to dramatic seasonal differences in the kinds and amounts of foods available in the three subsistence-farming villages that were the focus of the study.

An article in the March 2013 issue of Agricultural Research magazine tells more. http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/AR/archive/mar13/nutrition0313.htm

Waterland works at the Children's Nutrition Research Center in Houston, Texas, which is managed by the Agricultural Research Service, USDA's chief in-house scientific research agency, and by the Houston-based Texas Children's Hospital and Baylor College of Medicine, where Waterland is an associate professor of pediatrics and of molecular and human genetics. This research supports the USDA priority of improving children's health and nutrition.


'/>"/>

Contact: Marcia Wood
marcia.wood@ars.usda.gov
301-504-1662
United States Department of Agriculture - Research, Education and Economics
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Life experiences put their stamp on the next generation: New insights from epigenetics
2. Epigenetics shapes fate of brain vs. brawn castes in carpenter ants
3. Study finds epigenetics, not genetics, underlies homosexuality
4. Sick from stress? Blame your mom… and epigenetics
5. Not by DNA alone: How the epigenetics revolution is fostering new medicines
6. Epigenetics and epidemiology -- hip, hype and science
7. IRB Barcelona researchers discover mechanism that regulates steroid hormone production in Drosophila
8. Researchers explain a key developmental mechanism for the first time in plants
9. Novel storage mechanism allows command, control of memory
10. Mechanisms regulating inflammation associated with type 2 diabetes, cancer identified
11. Researchers at IRB Barcelona discover a general mechanism that accelerates tumor development
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/20/2016)... 20, 2016 The rising popularity of ... leasing is stoking significant interest in keyless access ... Bluetooth low energy (BLE), biometrics and near-field communication ... wave of wireless technologies in the automotive industry. ... advanced access systems opens the market to specialist ...
(Date:12/19/2016)... TORONTO , 19 de diciembre de 2016  Mosaic Biomedicals ... el desarrollo acelerado de MSC-1, un anticuerpo humanizado que se espera ... en 2017, con múltiples sitios previstos a lo largo de Europa ... MSC-1 ... factor inhibidor de leucemia (LIF), una citoquina pleiotrópica que se sobreexpresa ...
(Date:12/16/2016)... DUBLIN , Dec 16, 2016 Research ... Access System Market - Global Forecast to 2021" report to ... ... projected to grow at a CAGR of 14.06% from 2016 to ... 2016, and is projected to reach 854.8 Million by 2021. The ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/19/2017)... 19, 2017 Research and Markets ... has announced the addition of the ... Forecast to 2025" report to their offering. ... The report provides a detailed analysis on current and future market trends ... using estimated market values as the base numbers Key ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... GAITHERSBURG, Md. , Jan. 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... a privately-held immunotherapeutics company targeting infectious diseases, announced ... the merger of PharmAthene and Altimmune in an ... Fund, HealthCap, Truffle Capital and Redmont Capital. The ... immunotherapeutics company with four clinical stage and one ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... , ... January 18, 2017 , ... ... Institutes of Health (NIH) to update its Data Sharing Policy. Specifically, the nation’s ... of grant applications subject to the existing policy. AMIA recommended that NIH earmark ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... ... 2017 , ... DaVita Clinical Research (DCR), a ... device development, and Prism Clinical Research , a leader in providing fully ... Clinical Trials (VCT) has been selected by both companies as an exclusive ...
Breaking Biology Technology: