Navigation Links
DNA modifications measured in blood signal related changes in the brain
Date:4/8/2014

Johns Hopkins researchers say they have confirmed suspicions that DNA modifications found in the blood of mice exposed to high levels of stress hormone and showing signs of anxiety are directly related to changes found in their brain tissues.

The proof-of-concept study, reported online ahead of print in the June issue of Psychoneuroendocrinology, offers what the research team calls the first evidence that epigenetic changes that alter the way genes function without changing their underlying DNA sequence and are detectable in blood mirror alterations in brain tissue linked to underlying psychiatric diseases.

The new study reports only on so-called epigenetic changes to a single stress response gene called FKBP5, which has been implicated in depression, bipolar disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder. But the researchers say they have discovered the same blood and brain matches in dozens more genes, which regulate many important processes in the brain.

"Many human studies rely on the assumption that disease-relevant epigenetic changes that occur in the brain which is largely inaccessible and difficult to test also occur in the blood, which is easily accessible," says study leader Richard S. Lee, Ph.D., an instructor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. "This research on mice suggests that the blood can legitimately tell us what is going on in the brain, which is something we were just assuming before, and could lead us to better detection and treatment of mental disorders and for a more empirical way to test whether medications are working."

For the study, the Johns Hopkins team worked with mice with a rodent version of Cushing's disease, which is marked by the overproduction and release of cortisol, the primary stress hormone also called glucocorticoid. For four weeks, the mice were given different doses of stress hormones in their drinking water to assess epigenetic changes to FKBP5. The researchers took blood samples weekly to measure the changes and then dissected the brains at the end of the month to study what changes were occurring in the hippocampus as a result of glucocorticoid exposure. The hippocampus, in both mice and humans, is vital to memory formation, information storage and organizational abilities.

The measurements showed that the more stress hormones the mice got, the greater the epigenetic changes in the blood and brain tissue, although the scientists say the brain changes occurred in a different part of the gene than expected. This was what made finding the blood-brain connection very challenging, Lee says.

Also, the more stress hormone, the more RNA from the FKBP5 gene was expressed in the blood and brain, and the greater the association with depression. However, it was the underlying epigenetic changes that proved to be more robust. This is important, because while RNA levels may return to normal after stress hormone levels decrease or change due to small fluctuations in hormone levels, epigenetic changes persist, reflect overall stress hormone exposure and predict how much RNA will be made when stress hormone levels increase.

The team of researchers used an epigenetic assay previously developed in their laboratory that requires just one drop of blood to accurately assess overall exposure to stress hormone over 30 days. Elevated levels of stress hormone exposure are considered a risk factor for mental illness in humans and other mammals.


'/>"/>

Contact: Stephanie Desmon
sdesmon1@jhmi.edu
410-955-8665
Johns Hopkins Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. New study presents evidence that blood pressure should be measured in both arms
2. Interactions between drugs can also be measured at lowest doses
3. Study estimates proportion of adults affected by new blood pressure guideline
4. Adjuvant chemotherapy increases markers of molecular aging in the blood of BC survivors
5. Whether they reduce fat or not, obesity programs lower kids blood pressure
6. Simple blood test may predict if a child will become obese
7. Model predicts blood glucose levels 30 minutes later
8. Virginia Tech scientists out for blood when it comes to stopping malaria
9. Researchers identify potential new therapeutic target for controlling high blood sugar
10. Tequila plant is possible sweetener for diabetics -- helps reduce blood sugar, weight
11. New knowledge: Blood poisoning increases the risk of blood clots
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/18/2017)... Park, KS (PRWEB) , ... January 18, 2017 ... ... managed firm offering asset protection and financial planning services to families and business ... a charity event aimed at supporting children with developmental disabilities. , The Lakemary ...
(Date:1/18/2017)... ... January 18, 2017 , ... The Hear the ... project with the donation of cochlear implants. In February 2017, the first three ... a fair chance of leading an independent life. This engagement builds on the ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Anesthesia Progress – Everyone wants less pain during ... option for each patient. Dentists have several general anesthesia alternatives and finding the right ... the Tokyo Dental College in Tokyo, Japan wanted to find out which anesthetic was ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... ... January 17, 2017 , ... ... , The company, owned and operated by Ed Stroup, was created to ... price with the highest level of customer service. Healthful Balance products can be ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... CA (PRWEB) , ... January 17, 2017 , ... ... County, as well as Palm Desert, is opening a new office in San ... deep transcranial magnetic stimulation (dTMS) in Southern California, successfully treating individuals struggling with ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/17/2017)... Jan. 17, 2017 EU5 Glucose Monitoring Market ... report, "EU5 Glucose Monitoring Market Outlook to 2022", provides ... The report provides value, in millions of US dollars, ... segments - Blood Glucose Meters, Blood Glucose Test Strips ... and distribution shares data for each of these market ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... 17, 2017 The interventional radiology products market ... from USD 6.35 billion in 2016, at a CAGR ... of this market are rising incidence of chronic diseases, ... surgeries. The global interventional radiology products market ... On the basis of type, the stents segment is ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... -- The Global Nebulizers Market is poised to grow ... decade to reach approximately $1698.68 million by 2025. Some ... include rapidly growing demand in emerging regions, increasing use ... and online marketing strategies by key players. ... pneumatic nebulizers, ultrasonic nebulizers and mesh nebulizers. Pneumatic nebulizers ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: