Navigation Links
Exposure to stress even before conception causes genetic changes to offspring

A female's exposure to distress even before she conceives causes changes in the expression of a gene linked to the stress mechanism in the body in the ovum and later in the brains of the offspring from when they are born, according to a new study on rats conducted by the University of Haifa.

"The systemic similarity in many instances between us and mice raises questions about the transgenerational influences in humans as well, for example, the effects of the Second Lebanon War or the security situation in the South on the children of those who went through those difficult experiences," the researchers said. "If until now we saw evidence only of behavioral effects, now we've found proof of effects at the genetic level."

In previous studies in Prof. Micah Leshem's lab, it was found that exposing rats to stress before they had even conceived (and even at their "teen" stage) influences the behavior of their offspring. This study, conducted in the lab of Dr. Inna Gaisler-Salomon by PhD student Hiba Zaidan, in cooperation with Prof. Leshem, the researchers sought to examine whether there was an influence on genetic expression.

In the study, which was recently published in the journal Biological Psychiatry, the researchers focused on the gene known as CRF-1, a gene linked to the body's stress-control system that expresses itself in many places in the brain under stress.

The researchers took female rats that were 45 days old, which is parallel to human adolescence. Some of the rats were exposed to "minor" stress, which included changes in temperature and daily routine for seven days, and compared them to a control group that was not exposed to stress at all. The rats were mated and conceived two weeks later.

In the first part of the study, the researchers examined the ova of the rats that were exposed to stress even before they conceived, and they found that at that stage there was enhanced expression of the CRF-1 gene. For the second part, the researchers examined the brains of newborn rats immediately after birth, before the mother could have any influence on them, and found that even at the neonatal stage, there was enhanced expression of the CRF-1 gene in the brains of the rats born to mothers who had been exposed to stress.

During the third stage, the researchers exposed the offspring both those whose mothers had been exposed to stress and those whose mothers were not to stress when they reached adulthood. It emerged that the expression of CRF-1 among the offspring was dependent on three factors: The sex of the offspring, the stress undergone by the mother and the stress to which the offspring were exposed. The female rats whose mothers had been exposed to stress and who themselves underwent a "stressful" behavioral test showed higher levels of CRF-1 than other groups.

"This is the first time that we showed that the genetic response to stress in rats is linked to the experiences their mothers underwent long before they even got pregnant with them," the researchers said. "We are learning more and more about intergenerational genetic transfer and in light of the findings, and in light of the fact that in today's reality many women are exposed to stress even before they get pregnant, it's important to research the degree to which such phenomenon take place in humans."


Contact: Polina Petruhin
University of Haifa

Related medicine news :

1. C8 Lawsuit Lawyers at Wright & Schulte LLC Report on Growing Litigation Over Exposure to C8 Tainted Drinking Water from DuPont’s Washington Works Plant
2. Virginia Surgeon Dr. Mark W. McFarland Uses SpineFrontier’s Less Exposure Surgery Technologies: the New Invue Inset Trial-Cage Drill Guide and the Low-Profile Invue Inset
3. C8 Lawsuit News: Wright & Schulte LLC Launches C8 Facebook Page to Provide Up-to-Date Information On C8 Exposure and C8 Lawsuits in Ohio and West Virginia
4. Exposure to BPA in developing prostate increases risk of later cancer
5. Exposure to low doses of BPA linked to increased risk of prostate cancer in human stem cells
6. Cutting-Edge 3-D Technology at Midtown Dentistry Reduces Patient X-Ray Exposure
7. TCE exposure linked to increased risk of some cancers
8. Pesticide Exposure May Raise Parkinsons Risk, Study Suggests
9. Hidden Beach, the Only Luxurious All-inclusive Nudist Resort in the Mexican Caribbean, to Host Social Exposure's Naked Painting Party, Announces Go Classy Tours
10. Exposure to Secondhand Smoke May Lead to Worsening of Pediatric Kidney Disease; Pediatric Nephrology Publishes Dayton Children’s, Johns Hopkins Joint Study
11. Early-life traffic-related air pollution exposure linked to hyperactivity
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Brillianteen, McGaw YMCA’s student-produced musical ... its 65th Anniversary Brillianteen Revue, scheduled for March 4-6, 2016. Auditions for this ... Brillianteen has been a treasured tradition for numerous families in the Evanston community. ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... 25, 2015 , ... Castlewood Treatment Center for Eating Disorders, ... as a result of the $20,000 raised at the center’s recent golf ... Club in Eureka, will help individuals who otherwise might not seek treatment for ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... An unlikely ... resulting in a way for homeless people to have a more dignified and ... new initiative whereby they are repurposing plastic bags into sleeping mats for the ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... CA (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... Students ... prizes were awarded to winners of the Create Real Impact awards. California Casualty ... expression to help stem the tide of distracted and reckless driving, the number one ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... Dr. Todd S. Afferica, a noted general ... of his patients. Dr. Afferica now uses the BIOLASE WaterLase iPlus 2.0™ in many ... the doctor uses other traditional cutting tools, such as the scalpel and high-speed drill, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)...  Thanks to a donor with a personal connection ... Sister Diane Grassilli Center for Women,s Health now offers ... San Francisco . Fred Ruhland ... a gift of $617,320 that allowed the Center to ... and Whole Breast Ultrasound. Tomosynthesis, three-dimensional (3-D) mammography for ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Nov. 24, 2015  In the pharmaceutical industry, companies ... effort to quickly uncover new insights, tactics and strategies ... --> --> However, organizations often find ... project and ensure that all rules and regulations are ... Another major barrier to efficiently launching market research projects ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... New York , 24. November 2015 ... des Avery Breathing Pacemaker Systems, ist erfreut, ... als Clinical Consultant bekannt geben zu können. ...   --> Foto ... Stockholm (Schweden). Von 1984-1986 war ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: