Navigation Links
Inherited epigenetics produced record fast evolution

The domestication of chickens has given rise to rapid and extensive changes in genome function. A research team at Linkping University in Sweden has established that the changes are heritable, although they do not affect the DNA structure.

Humans kept Red Junglefowl as livestock about 8000 years ago. Evolutionarily speaking, the sudden emergence of an enormous variety of domestic fowl of different colours, shapes and sizes has occurred in record time. The traditional Darwinian explanation is that over thousands of years, people have bred properties that have arisen through random, spontaneous mutations in the chickens' genes.

Linkping zoologists, with Daniel Ntt and Per Jensen at the forefront, demonstrate in their study that so-called epigenetic factors play a greater role than previously thought. The study was published in the high-ranking journal BMC Genomics.

They studied how individual patterns of gene activity in the brain were different for modern laying chickens than the original form of the species, the red jungle fowl. Furthermore they discovered hundreds of genes in which the activity was markedly different.

Degrees of a kind of epigenetic modification, DNA methylation, were measured in several thousand genes. This is a chemical alteration of the DNA molecule that can affect gene expression, but unlike a mutation it does not appear in the DNA structure. The results show clear differences in hundreds of genes.

Researchers also examined whether the epigenetic differences were hereditary. The answer was yes; the chickens inherited both methylation and gene activity from their parentages. After eight generations of cross breeding the two types of chickens, the differences were still evident.

The results suggest that domestication has led to epigenetic changes. For more than 70 % of the genes, domesticated chickens retained a higher degree of methylation. Since methylation is a much faster process than random mutations, and may occur as a result of stress and other experiences, this may explain how variation within a species can increase so dramatically in just a short time. Ntt and Jensen's research may lead to a review of the important foundations for the theory of evolution.


Contact: Per Jensen
Linkping University

Related biology news :

1. New test spots early signs of inherited metabolic disorders
2. New inherited neurometabolic disorder discovered
3. Fail-safe system may lead to cures for inherited disorders
4. Mutations not inherited from parents cause more than half the cases of schizophrenia
5. Mutant flies shed light on inherited intellectual disability
6. Genetic testing for inherited cardiac conditions is patchy in Europe
7. Non-coding RNA has role in inherited neurological disorder -- and maybe other brain diseases too
8. Cancer drug holds promise as first treatment for common, inherited dementia
9. New gene test offers personalized treatment for inherited neuromuscular disorder
10. Teacher effort is linked to difficult students inherited traits
11. Transcription factor scan identifies genetic cause for inherited blindness
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Inherited epigenetics produced record fast evolution
(Date:11/20/2015)... 2015 NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or ... growing mobile commerce market and creator of the Wocket® ... was recently interviewed on The RedChip Money Report ... weekend on Bloomberg Europe , Bloomberg Asia, Bloomberg ... NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or the "Company"), a biometric ...
(Date:11/19/2015)... YORK , Nov. 19, 2015  Although some ... market is dominated by a few companies, according to ... companies own 51% of the market share of the ... The World Market for Molecular Diagnostic s ... "The market is still controlled by one company ...
(Date:11/18/2015)... New York , November 18, 2015 ... Market Research has published a new market report titled ... Growth, Trends, and Forecast, 2015 - 2021. According to the ... in 2014 and is anticipated to reach US$29.1 bn ... to 2021. North America ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... Manufacturing Practice (GMP) 10000 in the Santiago Marriott. The Global Stem Cells Group ... by a world-class team of qualified medical researchers and practitioners, experienced in administering ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... 2015  An interventional radiology technique shows promise for helping ... of a study being presented today at the annual meeting ... (RSNA). --> --> ... interventional radiologists as a way to stop bleeding in emergency ... means of treating obesity is new. Mubin Syed ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... includes an MPP licen ... niversity , s Solid Drug Nanoparticle (SDN) Technology ; ... up through cost cuts of priority ... based anywhere in the world will have the right to make, use and distribute ... where licensees based anywhere in the world will have the right to make, use ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... HOLLISTON, Mass. , Nov. 30, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... HART ), a biotechnology company developing bioengineered ... has received written notification from The NASDAQ Stock ... minimum bid price requirements. The letter noted that ... of HART,s common stock having exceeded $1.00 per ...
Breaking Biology Technology: