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Sample records for adaptive epigenetic reorganization

  1. Transgenerational epigenetic inheritance: adaptation through the germline epigenome?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prokopuk, Lexie; Western, Patrick S; Stringer, Jessica M

    2015-08-01

    Epigenetic modifications direct the way DNA is packaged into the nucleus, making genes more or less accessible to transcriptional machinery and influencing genomic stability. Environmental factors have the potential to alter the epigenome, allowing genes that are silenced to be activated and vice versa. This ultimately influences disease susceptibility and health in an individual. Furthermore, altered chromatin states can be transmitted to subsequent generations, thus epigenetic modifications may provide evolutionary mechanisms that impact on adaptation to changed environments. However, the mechanisms involved in establishing and maintaining these epigenetic modifications during development remain unclear. This review discusses current evidence for transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, confounding issues associated with its study, and the biological relevance of altered epigenetic states for subsequent generations.

  2. Epigenetic and Genetic Contributions to Adaptation in Chlamydomonas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kronholm, Ilkka; Bassett, Andrew; Baulcombe, David; Collins, Sinéad

    2017-09-01

    Epigenetic modifications, such as DNA methylation or histone modifications, can be transmitted between cellular or organismal generations. However, there are no experiments measuring their role in adaptation, so here we use experimental evolution to investigate how epigenetic variation can contribute to adaptation. We manipulated DNA methylation and histone acetylation in the unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii both genetically and chemically to change the amount of epigenetic variation generated or transmitted in adapting populations in three different environments (salt stress, phosphate starvation, and high CO2) for two hundred asexual generations. We find that reducing the amount of epigenetic variation available to populations can reduce adaptation in environments where it otherwise happens. From genomic and epigenomic sequences from a subset of the populations, we see changes in methylation patterns between the evolved populations over-represented in some functional categories of genes, which is consistent with some of these differences being adaptive. Based on whole genome sequencing of evolved clones, the majority of DNA methylation changes do not appear to be linked to cis-acting genetic mutations. Our results show that transgenerational epigenetic effects play a role in adaptive evolution, and suggest that the relationship between changes in methylation patterns and differences in evolutionary outcomes, at least for quantitative traits such as cell division rates, is complex. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  3. The epigenetic side of human adaptation: hypotheses, evidences and theories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giuliani, Cristina; Bacalini, Maria Giulia; Sazzini, Marco; Pirazzini, Chiara; Franceschi, Claudio; Garagnani, Paolo; Luiselli, Donata

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetics represents a still unexplored research field in the understanding of micro- and macro-evolutionary mechanisms, as epigenetic changes create phenotypic diversity within both individuals and populations. The purpose of this review is to dissect the landscape of studies focused on DNA methylation, one of the most described epigenetic mechanisms, emphasizing the aspects that could be relevant in human adaptations. Theories and results here considered were collected from the most recent papers published. The matter of DNA methylation inheritance is here described as well as the recent evolutionary theories regarding the role of DNA methylation-and epigenetics in a broader sense-in human evolution. The complex relation between (1) DNA methylation and genetic variability and (2) DNA methylation and the environmental stimuli crucial in shaping genetic and phenotypic variability through the human lineage-such as diet, climate and pathogens exposure-are described. Papers about population epigenetics are also illustrated due to their high relevance in this context. Genetic, epigenetic and phenotypic variations of the species, together with cultural ones, are considerably shaped by a vast range of environmental stimuli, thus representing the foundation of all human bio-cultural adaptations.

  4. Estimating the effect of the reorganization of interactions on the adaptability of species to changing environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cenci, Simone; Montero-Castaño, Ana; Saavedra, Serguei

    2018-01-21

    A major challenge in community ecology is to understand how species respond to environmental changes. Previous studies have shown that the reorganization of interactions among co-occurring species can modulate their chances to adapt to novel environmental conditions. Moreover, empirical evidence has shown that these ecological dynamics typically facilitate the persistence of groups of species rather than entire communities. However, so far, we have no systematic methodology to identify those groups of species with the highest or lowest chances to adapt to new environments through a reorganization of their interactions. Yet, this could prove extremely valuable for developing new conservation strategies. Here, we introduce a theoretical framework to estimate the effect of the reorganization of interactions on the adaptability of a group of species, within a community, to novel environmental conditions. We introduce the concept of the adaptation space of a group of species based on a feasibility analysis of a population dynamics model. We define the adaptation space of a group as the set of environmental conditions that can be made compatible with its persistence thorough the reorganization of interactions among species within the group. The larger the adaptation space of a group, the larger its likelihood to adapt to a novel environment. We show that the interactions in the community outside a group can act as structural constraints and be used to quantitatively compare the size of the adaptation space among different groups of species within a community. To test our theoretical framework, we perform a data analysis on several pairs of natural and artificially perturbed ecological communities. Overall, we find that the groups of species present in both control and perturbed communities are among the ones with the largest adaptation space. We believe that the results derived from our framework point out towards new directions to understand and estimate the

  5. Global network reorganization during dynamic adaptations of Bacillus subtilis metabolism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Buescher, Joerg Martin; Liebermeister, Wolfram; Jules, Matthieu

    2012-01-01

    Adaptation of cells to environmental changes requires dynamic interactions between metabolic and regulatory networks, but studies typically address only one or a few layers of regulation. For nutritional shifts between two preferred carbon sources of Bacillus subtilis, we combined statistical and...

  6. Global Network Reorganization During Dynamic Adaptations of Bacillus subtilis Metabolism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buescher, Joerg Martin; Liebermeister, Wolfram; Jules, Matthieu; Uhr, Markus; Muntel, Jan; Botella, Eric; Hessling, Bernd; Kleijn, Roelco Jacobus; Le Chat, Ludovic; Lecointe, Francois; Maeder, Ulrike; Nicolas, Pierre; Piersma, Sjouke; Ruegheimer, Frank; Becher, Doerte; Bessieres, Philippe; Bidnenko, Elena; Denham, Emma L.; Dervyn, Etienne; Devine, Kevin M.; Doherty, Geoff; Drulhe, Samuel; Felicori, Liza; Fogg, Mark J.; Goelzer, Anne; Hansen, Annette; Harwood, Colin R.; Hecker, Michael; Hubner, Sebastian; Hultschig, Claus; Jarmer, Hanne; Klipp, Edda; Leduc, Aurelie; Lewis, Peter; Molina, Frank; Noirot, Philippe; Peres, Sabine; Pigeonneau, Nathalie; Pohl, Susanne; Rasmussen, Simon; Rinn, Bernd; Schaffer, Marc; Schnidder, Julian; Schwikowski, Benno; Van Dijl, Jan Maarten; Veiga, Patrick; Walsh, Sean; Wilkinson, Anthony J.; Stelling, Joerg; Aymerich, Stephane; Sauer, Uwe

    2012-01-01

    Adaptation of cells to environmental changes requires dynamic interactions between metabolic and regulatory networks, but studies typically address only one or a few layers of regulation. For nutritional shifts between two preferred carbon sources of Bacillus subtilis, we combined statistical and

  7. Adaptive Resistance in Bacteria Requires Epigenetic Inheritance, Genetic Noise, and Cost of Efflux Pumps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Motta, Santiago Sandoval; Cluzel, Philippe; Aldana, Maximino

    2015-01-01

    Adaptive resistance emerges when populations of bacteria are subjected to gradual increases of antibiotics. It is characterized by a rapid emergence of resistance and fast reversibility to the non-resistant phenotype when the antibiotic is removed from the medium. Recent work shows that adaptive resistance requires epigenetic inheritance and heterogeneity of gene expression patterns that are, in particular, associated with the production of porins and efflux pumps. However, the precise mechanisms by which inheritance and variability govern adaptive resistance, and what processes cause its reversibility remain unclear. Here, using an efflux pump regulatory network (EPRN) model, we show that the following three mechanisms are essential to obtain adaptive resistance in a bacterial population: 1) intrinsic variability in the expression of the EPRN transcription factors; 2) epigenetic inheritance of the transcription rate of EPRN associated genes; and 3) energetic cost of the efflux pumps activity that slows down cell growth. While the first two mechanisms acting together are responsible for the emergence and gradual increase of the resistance, the third one accounts for its reversibility. In contrast with the standard assumption, our model predicts that adaptive resistance cannot be explained by increased mutation rates. Our results identify the molecular mechanism of epigenetic inheritance as the main target for therapeutic treatments against the emergence of adaptive resistance. Finally, our theoretical framework unifies known and newly identified determinants such as the burden of efflux pumps that underlie bacterial adaptive resistance to antibiotics. PMID:25781931

  8. Adaptive resistance in bacteria requires epigenetic inheritance, genetic noise, and cost of efflux pumps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Motta, Santiago Sandoval; Cluzel, Philippe; Aldana, Maximino

    2015-01-01

    Adaptive resistance emerges when populations of bacteria are subjected to gradual increases of antibiotics. It is characterized by a rapid emergence of resistance and fast reversibility to the non-resistant phenotype when the antibiotic is removed from the medium. Recent work shows that adaptive resistance requires epigenetic inheritance and heterogeneity of gene expression patterns that are, in particular, associated with the production of porins and efflux pumps. However, the precise mechanisms by which inheritance and variability govern adaptive resistance, and what processes cause its reversibility remain unclear. Here, using an efflux pump regulatory network (EPRN) model, we show that the following three mechanisms are essential to obtain adaptive resistance in a bacterial population: 1) intrinsic variability in the expression of the EPRN transcription factors; 2) epigenetic inheritance of the transcription rate of EPRN associated genes; and 3) energetic cost of the efflux pumps activity that slows down cell growth. While the first two mechanisms acting together are responsible for the emergence and gradual increase of the resistance, the third one accounts for its reversibility. In contrast with the standard assumption, our model predicts that adaptive resistance cannot be explained by increased mutation rates. Our results identify the molecular mechanism of epigenetic inheritance as the main target for therapeutic treatments against the emergence of adaptive resistance. Finally, our theoretical framework unifies known and newly identified determinants such as the burden of efflux pumps that underlie bacterial adaptive resistance to antibiotics.

  9. Adaptive resistance in bacteria requires epigenetic inheritance, genetic noise, and cost of efflux pumps.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santiago Sandoval Motta

    Full Text Available Adaptive resistance emerges when populations of bacteria are subjected to gradual increases of antibiotics. It is characterized by a rapid emergence of resistance and fast reversibility to the non-resistant phenotype when the antibiotic is removed from the medium. Recent work shows that adaptive resistance requires epigenetic inheritance and heterogeneity of gene expression patterns that are, in particular, associated with the production of porins and efflux pumps. However, the precise mechanisms by which inheritance and variability govern adaptive resistance, and what processes cause its reversibility remain unclear. Here, using an efflux pump regulatory network (EPRN model, we show that the following three mechanisms are essential to obtain adaptive resistance in a bacterial population: 1 intrinsic variability in the expression of the EPRN transcription factors; 2 epigenetic inheritance of the transcription rate of EPRN associated genes; and 3 energetic cost of the efflux pumps activity that slows down cell growth. While the first two mechanisms acting together are responsible for the emergence and gradual increase of the resistance, the third one accounts for its reversibility. In contrast with the standard assumption, our model predicts that adaptive resistance cannot be explained by increased mutation rates. Our results identify the molecular mechanism of epigenetic inheritance as the main target for therapeutic treatments against the emergence of adaptive resistance. Finally, our theoretical framework unifies known and newly identified determinants such as the burden of efflux pumps that underlie bacterial adaptive resistance to antibiotics.

  10. Effect of stress on human biology: Epigenetics, adaptation, inheritance, and social significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denhardt, David T

    2018-03-01

    I present a brief introduction to epigenetics, focused primarily on methylation of the genome and various regulatory RNAs, modifications of associated histones, and their importance in enabling us to adapt to real and changing environmental, developmental, and social circumstances. Following this is a more extensive overview of how it impacts our inheritance, our entire life (which changes as we age), and how we interact with others. Throughout, I emphasize the critical influence that stress, of many varieties exerts, via epigenetic means, on much of how we live and survive, mostly in the brain. I end with a short section on multigenerational transmission, drugs, and the importance of both social life and early life experiences in the development of adult diseases. There will be nothing about cancer. Although epigenetics is critical in that field, it is a whole different cobweb of complications (some involving stress). © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Epigenetic stability, adaptability, and reversibility in human embryonic stem cells

    OpenAIRE

    Tompkins, Joshua D.; Hall, Christine; Chen, Vincent Chang-yi; Li, Arthur Xuejun; Wu, Xiwei; Hsu, David; Couture, Larry A.; Riggs, Arthur D.

    2012-01-01

    The stability of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) is of critical importance for both experimental and clinical applications. We find that as an initial response to altered culture conditions, hESCs change their transcription profile for hundreds of genes and their DNA methylation profiles for several genes outside the core pluripotency network. After adaption to conditions of feeder-free defined and/or xeno-free culture systems, expression and DNA methylation profiles are quite stable for a...

  12. Epigenetic stability, adaptability, and reversibility in human embryonic stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tompkins, Joshua D; Hall, Christine; Chen, Vincent Chang-yi; Li, Arthur Xuejun; Wu, Xiwei; Hsu, David; Couture, Larry A; Riggs, Arthur D

    2012-07-31

    The stability of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) is of critical importance for both experimental and clinical applications. We find that as an initial response to altered culture conditions, hESCs change their transcription profile for hundreds of genes and their DNA methylation profiles for several genes outside the core pluripotency network. After adaption to conditions of feeder-free defined and/or xeno-free culture systems, expression and DNA methylation profiles are quite stable for additional passaging. However, upon reversion to the original feeder-based culture conditions, numerous transcription changes are not reversible. Similarly, although the majority of DNA methylation changes are reversible, highlighting the plasticity of DNA methylation, a few are persistent. Collectively, this indicates these cells harbor a memory of culture history. For culture-induced DNA methylation changes, we also note an intriguing correlation: hypomethylation of regions 500-2440 bp upstream of promoters correlates with decreased expression, opposite to that commonly seen at promoter-proximal regions. Lastly, changes in regulation of G-coupled protein receptor pathways provide a partial explanation for many of the unique transcriptional changes observed during hESC adaptation and reverse adaptation.

  13. Cytomegalovirus Infection Drives Adaptive Epigenetic Diversification of NK Cells with Altered Signaling and Effector Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlums, Heinrich; Cichocki, Frank; Tesi, Bianca; Theorell, Jakob; Beziat, Vivien; Holmes, Tim D.; Han, Hongya; Chiang, Samuel C.C.; Foley, Bree; Mattsson, Kristin; Larsson, Stella; Schaffer, Marie; Malmberg, Karl-Johan; Ljunggren, Hans-Gustaf; Miller, Jeffrey S.; Bryceson, Yenan T.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY The mechanisms underlying human natural killer (NK) cell phenotypic and functional heterogeneity are unknown. Here, we describe the emergence of diverse subsets of human NK cells selectively lacking expression of signaling proteins after human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) infection. The absence of B and myeloid cell-related signaling protein expression in these NK cell subsets correlated with promoter DNA hyperme-thylation. Genome-wide DNA methylation patterns were strikingly similar between HCMV-associated adaptive NK cells and cytotoxic effector T cells but differed from those of canonical NK cells. Functional interrogation demonstrated altered cytokine responsiveness in adaptive NK cells that was linked to reduced expression of the transcription factor PLZF. Furthermore, subsets of adaptive NK cells demonstrated significantly reduced functional responses to activated autologous T cells. The present results uncover a spectrum of epigenetically unique adaptive NK cell subsets that diversify in response to viral infection and have distinct functional capabilities compared to canonical NK cell subsets. PMID:25786176

  14. Epigenetic Mechanisms Regulating Adaptive Responses to Targeted Kinase Inhibitors in Cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angus, Steven P; Zawistowski, Jon S; Johnson, Gary L

    2018-01-06

    Although targeted inhibition of oncogenic kinase drivers has achieved remarkable patient responses in many cancers, the development of resistance has remained a significant challenge. Numerous mechanisms have been identified, including the acquisition of gatekeeper mutations, activating pathway mutations, and copy number loss or gain of the driver or alternate nodes. These changes have prompted the development of kinase inhibitors with increased selectivity, use of second-line therapeutics to overcome primary resistance, and combination treatment to forestall resistance. In addition to genomic resistance mechanisms, adaptive transcriptional and signaling responses seen in tumors are gaining appreciation as alterations that lead to a phenotypic state change-often observed as an epithelial-to-mesenchymal shift or reversion to a cancer stem cell-like phenotype underpinned by remodeling of the epigenetic landscape. This epigenomic modulation driving cell state change is multifaceted and includes modulation of repressive and activating histone modifications, DNA methylation, enhancer remodeling, and noncoding RNA species. Consequently, the combination of kinase inhibitors with drugs targeting components of the transcriptional machinery and histone-modifying enzymes has shown promise in preclinical and clinical studies. Here, we review mechanisms of resistance to kinase inhibition in cancer, with special emphasis on the rewired kinome and transcriptional signaling networks and the potential vulnerabilities that may be exploited to overcome these adaptive signaling changes.

  15. A biphasic epigenetic switch controls immunoevasion, virulence and niche adaptation in non-typeable Haemophilus influenzae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atack, John M; Srikhanta, Yogitha N; Fox, Kate L; Jurcisek, Joseph A; Brockman, Kenneth L; Clark, Tyson A; Boitano, Matthew; Power, Peter M; Jen, Freda E-C; McEwan, Alastair G; Grimmond, Sean M; Smith, Arnold L; Barenkamp, Stephen J; Korlach, Jonas; Bakaletz, Lauren O; Jennings, Michael P

    2015-07-28

    Non-typeable Haemophilus influenzae contains an N(6)-adenine DNA-methyltransferase (ModA) that is subject to phase-variable expression (random ON/OFF switching). Five modA alleles, modA2, modA4, modA5, modA9 and modA10, account for over two-thirds of clinical otitis media isolates surveyed. Here, we use single molecule, real-time (SMRT) methylome analysis to identify the DNA-recognition motifs for all five of these modA alleles. Phase variation of these alleles regulates multiple proteins including vaccine candidates, and key virulence phenotypes such as antibiotic resistance (modA2, modA5, modA10), biofilm formation (modA2) and immunoevasion (modA4). Analyses of a modA2 strain in the chinchilla model of otitis media show a clear selection for ON switching of modA2 in the middle ear. Our results indicate that a biphasic epigenetic switch can control bacterial virulence, immunoevasion and niche adaptation in an animal model system.

  16. Donepezil Reverses Dendritic Spine Morphology Adaptations and Fmr1 Epigenetic Modifications in Hippocampus of Adult Rats After Adolescent Alcohol Exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulholland, Patrick J; Teppen, Tara L; Miller, Kelsey M; Sexton, Hannah G; Pandey, Subhash C; Swartzwelder, H Scott

    2018-01-16

    Adolescent intermittent ethanol (AIE) exposure produces persistent impairments in cholinergic and epigenetic signaling and alters markers of synapses in the hippocampal formation, effects that are thought to drive hippocampal dysfunction in adult rodents. Donepezil (Aricept), a cholinesterase inhibitor, is used clinically to ameliorate memory-related cognitive deficits. Given that donepezil also prevents morphological impairment in preclinical models of neuropsychiatric disorders, we investigated the ability of donepezil to reverse morphological and epigenetic adaptations in the hippocampus of adult rats exposed to AIE. Because of the known relationship between dendritic spine density and morphology with the fragile X mental retardation 1 (Fmr1) gene, we also assessed Fmr1 expression and its epigenetic regulation in hippocampus after AIE and donepezil pretreatment. Adolescent rats were administered intermittent ethanol for 16 days starting on postnatal day 30. Rats were treated with donepezil (2.5 mg/kg) once a day for 4 days starting 20 days after the completion of AIE exposure. Brains were dissected out after the fourth donepezil dose, and spine analysis was completed in dentate gyrus granule neurons. A separate cohort of rats, treated identically, was used for molecular studies. AIE exposure significantly reduced dendritic spine density and altered morphological characteristics of subclasses of dendritic spines. AIE exposure also increased mRNA levels and H3-K27 acetylation occupancy of the Fmr1 gene in hippocampus. Treatment of AIE-exposed adult rats with donepezil reversed both the dendritic spine adaptations and epigenetic modifications and expression of Fmr1. These findings indicate that AIE produces long-lasting decreases in dendritic spine density and changes in Fmr1 gene expression in the hippocampal formation, suggesting morphological and epigenetic mechanisms underlying previously reported behavioral deficits after AIE. The reversal of these effects

  17. Epigenetic reprogramming in mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, Hugh D; Santos, Fátima; Green, Kelly; Dean, Wendy; Reik, Wolf

    2005-04-15

    Epigenetic marking systems confer stability of gene expression during mammalian development. Genome-wide epigenetic reprogramming occurs at stages when developmental potency of cells changes. At fertilization, the paternal genome exchanges protamines for histones, undergoes DNA demethylation, and acquires histone modifications, whereas the maternal genome appears epigenetically more static. During preimplantation development, there is passive DNA demethylation and further reorganization of histone modifications. In blastocysts, embryonic and extraembryonic lineages first show different epigenetic marks. This epigenetic reprogramming is likely to be needed for totipotency, correct initiation of embryonic gene expression, and early lineage development in the embryo. Comparative work demonstrates reprogramming in all mammalian species analysed, but the extent and timing varies, consistent with notable differences between species during preimplantation development. Parental imprinting marks originate in sperm and oocytes and are generally protected from this genome-wide reprogramming. Early primordial germ cells possess imprinting marks similar to those of somatic cells. However, rapid DNA demethylation after midgestation erases these parental imprints, in preparation for sex-specific de novo methylation during gametogenesis. Aberrant reprogramming of somatic epigenetic marks after somatic cell nuclear transfer leads to epigenetic defects in cloned embryos and stem cells. Links between epigenetic marking systems appear to be developmentally regulated contributing to plasticity. A number of activities that confer epigenetic marks are firmly established, while for those that remove marks, particularly methylation, some interesting candidates have emerged recently which need thorough testing in vivo. A mechanistic understanding of reprogramming will be crucial for medical applications of stem cell technology.

  18. ISSUES IN ROMANIAN BANKING SYSTEM IN THE CONTEXT OF REORGANIZING ITS ADAPTATION TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE MARKET ECONOMY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    IOAN DUMITRU MOTONIU

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on the concept that the banking system is the engine of economic development, the paper is intended as a blueprint for the banking system in Romania since 1989, stages and parts of its reorganizing process. In the article is also carried out an analysis of the Romanian banking system in terms of numerical development banks and through the two indicators considered fundamental in the banking system: market share, expressed in terms of net balance sheet asset, that social / endowment capital and are presented the conclusions that have been drawn from this analysis.

  19. Reorganized text.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-01

    Reorganized Text: In the Original Investigation titled “Patterns of Hospital Utilization for Head and Neck Cancer Care: Changing Demographics” posted online in the January 29, 2015, issue of JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery (doi:10.1001 /jamaoto.2014.3603), information was copied within sections and text rearranged to accommodate Continuing Medical Education quiz formatting. The information from the topic statements of each paragraph in the Hypothesis Testing subsection of the Methods section was collected in a new first paragraph for that subsection, which reads as follows: “Several hypotheses regarding the causes of regionalization of HNCA care were tested using the NIS data: (1) increasing patient comorbidities over time, causing a shift in care to teaching institutions that would theoretically be better equipped to handle such increased comorbidities; (2) shifting of payer status; (3) increased proportion of prior radiation therapy; and (4) a higher fraction of more complex procedures being referred and performed at teaching institutions.” In addition, the phrase "As summarized in Table3," was added to the beginning of paragraph 6 of the Discussion section, and the call-out to Table 3 in the middle of that paragraph was deleted. Finally, paragraphs 6 and 7 of the Discussion section were combined.

  20. Epigenetic adaptation of the placental serotonin transporter gene (SLC6A4 to gestational diabetes mellitus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sofia Blazevic

    Full Text Available We tested the hypothesis that gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM alters the DNA methylation pattern of the fetal serotonin transporter gene (SLC6A4, and examined the functional relevance of DNA methylation for regulation of the SLC6A4 expression in the human placenta. The study included 50 mother-infant pairs. Eighteen mothers were diagnosed with GDM and 32 had normal glucose tolerance (NGT. All neonates were of normal birth weight and born at term by planned Cesarean section. DNA and RNA were isolated from samples of tissue collected from the fetal side of the placenta immediately after delivery. DNA methylation was quantified at 7 CpG sites within the SLC6A4 distal promoter region using PCR amplification of bisulfite treated DNA and subsequent DNA sequencing. SLC6A4 mRNA levels were measured by reverse transcription-quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR. Functional SLC6A4 polymorphisms (5HTTLPR, STin2, rs25531 were genotyped using standard PCR-based procedures. Average DNA methylation across the 7 analyzed loci was decreased in the GDM as compared to the NGT group (by 27.1%, p = 0.037 and negatively correlated, before and after adjustment for potential confounder/s, with maternal plasma glucose levels at the 24th to 28th week of gestation (p0.05. The results suggest that DNA methylation of the fetal SLC6A4 gene is sensitive to the maternal metabolic state in pregnancy. They also indicate a predominant role of epigenetic over genetic mechanisms in the regulation of SLC6A4 expression in the human placenta. Longitudinal studies in larger cohorts are needed to verify these results and determine to which degree placental SLC6A4 changes may contribute to long-term outcomes of infants exposed to GDM.

  1. A cytosolic Ezh1 isoform modulates a PRC2–Ezh1 epigenetic adaptive response in postmitotic cells

    KAUST Repository

    Bodega, Beatrice

    2017-03-27

    The evolution of chromatin-based epigenetic cell memory may be driven not only by the necessity for cells to stably maintain transcription programs, but also by the need to recognize signals and allow plastic responses to environmental stimuli. The mechanistic role of the epigenome in adult postmitotic tissues, however, remains largely unknown. In vertebrates, two variants of the Polycomb repressive complex (PRC2-Ezh2 and PRC2-Ezh1) control gene silencing via methylation of histone H3 on Lys27 (H3K27me). Here we describe a reversible mechanism that involves a novel isoform of Ezh1 (Ezh1β). Ezh1β lacks the catalytic SET domain and acts in the cytoplasm of skeletal muscle cells to control nuclear PRC2-Ezh1 activity in response to atrophic oxidative stress, by regulating Eed assembly with Suz12 and Ezh1α (the canonical isoform) at their target genes. We report a novel PRC2-Ezh1 function that utilizes Ezh1β as an adaptive stress sensor in the cytoplasm, thus allowing postmitotic cells to maintain tissue integrity in response to environmental changes.

  2. Epigenetics in adaptive evolution and development: the interplay between evolving species and epigenetic mechanisms: extract from Trygve Tollefsbol (ed.) (2011) Handbook of epigenetics--the new molecular and medical genetics. Chapter 26. Amsterdam, USA: Elsevier, pp. 423-446.

    Science.gov (United States)

    House, Simon H

    2013-04-01

    By comparing epigenetics of current species with fossil records across evolutionary transitions, we can gauge the moment of emergence of some novel mechanisms in evolution, and recognize that epigenetic mechanisms have a bearing on mutation. Understanding the complexity and changeability of these mechanisms, as well as the changes they can effect, is both fascinating and of vital practical benefit. Our most serious pandemics of so-called 'non-communicable' diseases - mental and cardiovascular disorders, obesity and diabetes, rooted in the 'metabolic syndrome' - are evidently related to effects on our evolutionary mechanisms of agricultural and food industrialization, modern lifestyle and diet. Pollution affects us directly as well as indirectly by its destruction of ecologically essential biosystems. Evidently such powerful conditions of existence have epigenetic effects on both our health and our continuing evolution. Such effects are most profound during reproductive and developmental processes, when levels of hormones, as affected by stress particularly, may be due to modern cultures in childbearing such as excessive intervention, separation, maternal distress and disruption of bonding. Mechanisms of genomic imprinting seem likely to throw light on problems in assisted reproductive technology, among other transgenerational effects. © The Author(s) 2014.

  3. Evolution, epigenetics and cooperation

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Explanations for biological evolution in terms of changes in gene frequencies refer to outcomes rather than process. Integrating epigenetic studies with older evolutionary theories has drawn attention to the ways in which evolution occurs. Adaptation at the level of the gene is givingway to adaptation at the level of the ...

  4. Mechanisms of epigenetic memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Urso, Agustina; Brickner, Jason H

    2014-06-01

    Although genetics has an essential role in defining the development, morphology, and physiology of an organism, epigenetic mechanisms have an essential role in modulating these properties by regulating gene expression. During development, epigenetic mechanisms establish stable gene expression patterns to ensure proper differentiation. Such mechanisms also allow organisms to adapt to environmental changes and previous experiences can impact the future responsiveness of an organism to a stimulus over long timescales and even over generations. Here, we discuss the concept of epigenetic memory, defined as the stable propagation of a change in gene expression or potential induced by developmental or environmental stimuli. We highlight three distinct paradigms of epigenetic memory that operate on different timescales. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Epigenetic inheritance in apomictic dandelions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Preite, V.

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic variation, such as changes in DNA methylations, regulatory small RNAs (sRNAs) and chromatin modifications can be induced by environmental stress. There is increasing information that such induced epigenetic modifications can be transmitted to offspring, potentially mediating adaptive

  6. Behavioral epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lester, Barry M; Tronick, Edward; Nestler, Eric; Abel, Ted; Kosofsky, Barry; Kuzawa, Christopher W; Marsit, Carmen J; Maze, Ian; Meaney, Michael J; Monteggia, Lisa M; Reul, Johannes M H M; Skuse, David H; Sweatt, J David; Wood, Marcelo A

    2011-05-01

    Sponsored by the New York Academy of Sciences, the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and the University of Massachusetts Boston, "Behavioral Epigenetics" was held on October 29-30, 2010 at the University of Massachusetts Boston Campus Center, Boston, Massachusetts. This meeting featured speakers and panel discussions exploring the emerging field of behavioral epigenetics, from basic biochemical and cellular mechanisms to the epigenetic modulation of normative development, developmental disorders, and psychopathology. This report provides an overview of the research presented by leading scientists and lively discussion about the future of investigation at the behavioral epigenetic level. © 2011 New York Academy of Sciences.

  7. Epigenetics in an ecotoxicological context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandegehuchte, Michiel B; Janssen, Colin R

    2014-04-01

    Epigenetics can play a role in interactions between chemicals and exposed species, between species and abiotic ecosystem components or between species of the same or another population in a community. Technological progress and advanced insights into epigenetic processes have led to the description of epigenetic features (mainly DNA methylation) in many ecologically relevant species: algae, plants, several invertebrates and fish. Epigenetic changes in plants, insects and cladocerans have been reported to be induced by various environmental stress factors including nutrition or water deficiency, grazing, light or temperature alterations, social environment, and dissolved organic matter concentrations. As regards chemicals, studies in rats and mice exposed to specific pesticides, hydrocarbons, dioxins, and endocrine disrupting chemicals demonstrated the induction of epigenetic changes, suggesting the need for further research with these substances in an ecotoxicological context. In fish and plants, exposure to polyaromatic hydrocarbons, metals, and soluble fractions of solid waste affected the epigenetic status. A novel concept in ecotoxicological epigenetics is the induction of transgenerational stress resistance upon chemical exposure, as demonstrated in rice exposed to metals. Evaluating epigenetics in ecotoxicological field studies is a second relatively new approach. A cryptic lineage of earthworms had developed arsenic tolerance in the field, concurrent with specific DNA methylation patterns. Flatfish caught in the framework of environmental monitoring had developed tumours, exhibiting specific DNA methylation patterns. Two main potential implications of epigenetics in an ecotoxicological context are (1) the possibility of transgenerationally inherited, chemical stress-induced epigenetic changes with associated phenotypes and (2) epigenetically induced adaptation to stress upon long-term chemical exposure. Key knowledge gaps are concerned with the causality of

  8. Nutritional epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    This chapter is intended to provide a timely overview of the current state of research at the intersection of nutrition and epigenetics. I begin by describing epigenetics and molecular mechanisms of eigenetic regulation, then highlight four classes of nutritional exposures currently being investiga...

  9. Epigenetic variation in asexually reproducing organisms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhoeven, K.J.F.; Preite, V.

    2014-01-01

    The role that epigenetic inheritance can play in adaptation may differ between sexuals and asexuals because (1) the dynamics of adaptation differ under sexual and asexual reproduction and the opportunities offered by epigenetic inheritance may affect these dynamics differently; and (2) in asexual

  10. Epigenetic mechanisms underlying nervous system diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qureshi, Irfan A; Mehler, Mark F

    2018-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms act as control systems for modulating genomic structure and activity in response to evolving profiles of cell-extrinsic, cell-cell, and cell-intrinsic signals. These dynamic processes are responsible for mediating cell- and tissue-specific gene expression and function and gene-gene and gene-environmental interactions. The major epigenetic mechanisms include DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation; histone protein posttranslational modifications, nucleosome remodeling/repositioning, and higher-order chromatin reorganization; noncoding RNA regulation; and RNA editing. These mechanisms are intimately involved in executing fundamental genomic programs, including gene transcription, posttranscriptional RNA processing and transport, translation, X-chromosome inactivation, genomic imprinting, retrotransposon regulation, DNA replication, and DNA repair and the maintenance of genomic stability. For the nervous system, epigenetics offers a novel and robust framework for explaining how brain development and aging occur, neural cellular diversity is generated, synaptic and neural network connectivity and plasticity are mediated, and complex cognitive and behavioral phenotypes are inherited transgenerationally. Epigenetic factors and processes are, not surprisingly, implicated in nervous system disease pathophysiology through several emerging paradigms - mutations and genetic variation in genes encoding epigenetic factors; impairments in epigenetic factor expression, localization, and function; epigenetic mechanisms modulating disease-associated factors and pathways; and the presence of deregulated epigenetic profiles in central and peripheral tissues. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. NAS council approves reorganization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richman, Barbara T.

    A proposed reorganization at the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) would fold the Commission on Natural Resources into the Assembly of Mathematical and Physical Sciences (AMPS) to form what would be called the Commission on Mathematics, Physical Sciences, and Resources. Spurred by NAS President Frank Press, past president of AGU, the merger is part of a reorganization that aims to clarify the division of labor within the National Research Council (NRC). The NAS council approved the general structure of the reorganization; the National Academy of Engineering's council was scheduled to review the matter at its March 12 meeting. Administrative details of the restructuring will not be finalized until the April 3 meeting of the NRC governing board.

  12. Skeletal muscle cells possess a 'memory' of acute early life TNF-α exposure: role of epigenetic adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharples, Adam P; Polydorou, Ioanna; Hughes, David C; Owens, Daniel J; Hughes, Thomas M; Stewart, Claire E

    2016-06-01

    Sufficient quantity and quality of skeletal muscle is required to maintain lifespan and healthspan into older age. The concept of skeletal muscle programming/memory has been suggested to contribute to accelerated muscle decline in the elderly in association with early life stress such as fetal malnutrition. Further, muscle cells in vitro appear to remember the in vivo environments from which they are derived (e.g. cancer, obesity, type II diabetes, physical inactivity and nutrient restriction). Tumour-necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) is a pleiotropic cytokine that is chronically elevated in sarcopenia and cancer cachexia. Higher TNF-α levels are strongly correlated with muscle loss, reduced strength and therefore morbidity and earlier mortality. We have extensively shown that TNF-α impairs regenerative capacity in mouse and human muscle derived stem cells [Meadows et al. (J Cell Physiol 183(3):330-337, 2000); Foulstone et al. (J Cell Physiol 189(2):207-215, 2001); Foulstone et al. (Exp Cell Res 294(1):223-235, 2004); Stewart et al. (J Cell Physiol 198(2):237-247, 2004); Al-Shanti et al. (Growth factors (Chur, Switzerland) 26(2):61-73, 2008); Saini et al. (Growth factors (Chur, Switzerland) 26(5):239-253, 2008); Sharples et al. (J Cell Physiol 225(1):240-250, 2010)]. We have also recently established an epigenetically mediated mechanism (SIRT1-histone deacetylase) regulating survival of myoblasts in the presence of TNF-α [Saini et al. (Exp Physiol 97(3):400-418, 2012)]. We therefore wished to extend this work in relation to muscle memory of catabolic stimuli and the potential underlying epigenetic modulation of muscle loss. To enable this aim; C2C12 myoblasts were cultured in the absence or presence of early TNF-α (early proliferative lifespan) followed by 30 population doublings in the absence of TNF-α, prior to the induction of differentiation in low serum media (LSM) in the absence or presence of late TNF-α (late proliferative lifespan). The cells that

  13. Epigenetics and brain evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keverne, Eric B

    2011-04-01

    Fundamental aspects of mammalian brain evolution occurred in the context of viviparity and placentation brought about by the epigenetic regulation of imprinted genes. Since the fetal placenta hormonally primes the maternal brain, two genomes in one individual are transgenerationally co-adapted to ensure maternal care and nurturing. Advanced aspects of neocortical brain evolution has shown very few genetic changes between monkeys and humans. Although these lineages diverged at approximately the same time as the rat and mouse (20 million years ago), synonymous sequence divergence between the rat and mouse is double that when comparing monkey with human sequences. Paradoxically, encephalization of rat and mouse are remarkably similar, while comparison of the human and monkey shows the human cortex to be three times the size of the monkey. This suggests an element of genetic stability between the brains of monkey and man with a greater emphasis on epigenetics providing adaptable variability.

  14. Epigenetics of induced pluripotency, the seven-headed dragon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djuric, Ugljesa; Ellis, James

    2010-03-15

    Induction of pluripotency from somatic cells by exogenous transcription factors is made possible by a variety of epigenetic changes that take place during the reprogramming process. The derivation of fully reprogrammed induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells is achieved through establishment of embryonic stem cell (ESC)-like epigenetic architecture permitting the reactivation of key endogenous pluripotency-related genes, establishment of appropriate bivalent chromatin domains and DNA hypomethylation of genomic heterochromatic regions. Restructuring of the epigenetic landscape, however, is a very inefficient process and the vast majority of the induced cells fail to complete the reprogramming process. Optimal ESC-like epigenetic reorganization is necessary for all reliable downstream uses of iPS cells, including in vitro modeling of disease and clinical applications. Here, we discuss the key advancements in the understanding of dynamic epigenetic changes taking place over the course of the reprogramming process and how aberrant epigenetic remodeling may impact downstream applications of iPS cell technology.

  15. Behavioral epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, David S

    2017-01-01

    Why do we grow up to have the traits we do? Most 20th century scientists answered this question by referring only to our genes and our environments. But recent discoveries in the emerging field of behavioral epigenetics have revealed factors at the interface between genes and environments that also play crucial roles in development. These factors affect how genes work; scientists now know that what matters as much as which genes you have (and what environments you encounter) is how your genes are affected by their contexts. The discovery that what our genes do depends in part on our experiences has shed light on how Nature and Nurture interact at the molecular level inside of our bodies. Data emerging from the world's behavioral epigenetics laboratories support the idea that a person's genes alone cannot determine if, for example, he or she will end up shy, suffering from cardiovascular disease, or extremely smart. Among the environmental factors that can influence genetic activity are parenting styles, diets, and social statuses. In addition to influencing how doctors treat diseases, discoveries about behavioral epigenetics are likely to alter how biologists think about evolution, because some epigenetic effects of experience appear to be transmissible from generation to generation. This domain of research will likely change how we think about the origins of human nature. WIREs Syst Biol Med 2017, 9:e1333. doi: 10.1002/wsbm.1333 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Type I Interferon Induced Epigenetic Regulation of Macrophages Suppresses Innate and Adaptive Immunity in Acute Respiratory Viral Infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danielle N Kroetz

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Influenza A virus (IAV is an airborne pathogen that causes significant morbidity and mortality each year. Macrophages (Mϕ are the first immune population to encounter IAV virions in the lungs and are required to control infection. In the present study, we explored the mechanism by which cytokine signaling regulates the phenotype and function of Mϕ via epigenetic modification of chromatin. We have found that type I interferon (IFN-I potently upregulates the lysine methyltransferase Setdb2 in murine and human Mϕ, and in turn Setdb2 regulates Mϕ-mediated immunity in response to IAV. The induction of Setdb2 by IFN-I was significantly impaired upon inhibition of the JAK-STAT signaling cascade, and chromatin immunoprecipitation revealed that both STAT1 and interferon regulatory factor 7 bind upstream of the transcription start site to induce expression. The generation of Setdb2LacZ reporter mice revealed that IAV infection results in systemic upregulation of Setdb2 in myeloid cells. In the lungs, alveolar Mϕ expressed the highest level of Setdb2, with greater than 70% lacZ positive on day 4 post-infection. Silencing Setdb2 activity in Mϕ in vivo enhanced survival in lethal IAV infection. Enhanced host protection correlated with an amplified antiviral response and less obstruction to the airways. By tri-methylating H3K9, Setdb2 silenced the transcription of Mx1 and Isg15, antiviral effectors that inhibit IAV replication. Accordingly, a reduced viral load in knockout mice on day 8 post-infection was linked to elevated Isg15 and Mx1 transcript in the lungs. In addition, Setdb2 suppressed the expression of a large number of other genes with proinflammatory or immunomodulatory function. This included Ccl2, a chemokine that signals through CCR2 to regulate monocyte recruitment to infectious sites. Consistently, knockout mice produced more CCL2 upon IAV infection and this correlated with a 2-fold increase in the number of inflammatory monocytes and

  17. Epigenetic Inheritance across the Landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whipple, Amy V; Holeski, Liza M

    2016-01-01

    The study of epigenomic variation at the landscape-level in plants may add important insight to studies of adaptive variation. A major goal of landscape genomic studies is to identify genomic regions contributing to adaptive variation across the landscape. Heritable variation in epigenetic marks, resulting in transgenerational plasticity, can influence fitness-related traits. Epigenetic marks are influenced by the genome, the environment, and their interaction, and can be inherited independently of the genome. Thus, epigenomic variation likely influences the heritability of many adaptive traits, but the extent of this influence remains largely unknown. Here, we summarize the relevance of epigenetic inheritance to ecological and evolutionary processes, and review the literature on landscape-level patterns of epigenetic variation. Landscape-level patterns of epigenomic variation in plants generally show greater levels of isolation by distance and isolation by environment then is found for the genome, but the causes of these patterns are not yet clear. Linkage between the environment and epigenomic variation has been clearly shown within a single generation, but demonstrating transgenerational inheritance requires more complex breeding and/or experimental designs. Transgenerational epigenetic variation may alter the interpretation of landscape genomic studies that rely upon phenotypic analyses, but should have less influence on landscape genomic approaches that rely upon outlier analyses or genome-environment associations. We suggest that multi-generation common garden experiments conducted across multiple environments will allow researchers to understand which parts of the epigenome are inherited, as well as to parse out the relative contribution of heritable epigenetic variation to the phenotype.

  18. Detection of Brain Reorganization in Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Using Functional MRI

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-10-01

    Page | 2 AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-13-1-0464 TITLE: Detection of Brain Reorganization in Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Using Functional MRI...Sep 2014 – 29 Sep 2015 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Detection of Brain Reorganization in Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Using Functional...adaptive functional reorganization as a way to explain how some early-stage MS patients are able to perform well in clinical cognitive testing

  19. Re-organization of the cytoskeleton and endoplasmic reticulum in the Arabidopsis pen1-1 mutant inoculated with the non-adapted powdery mildew pathogen, Blumeria graminis f. sp. hordei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takemoto, Daigo; Jones, David A; Hardham, Adrienne R

    2006-11-01

    SUMMARY Plant cells attacked by microorganisms rapidly translocate cytoplasm to the site of pathogen penetration, a response that usually involves rearrangement of actin microfilaments. In this study, we monitored re-organization of green fluorescent protein (GFP)-labelled actin microfilaments, microtubules and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) during infection by the powdery mildew pathogen Blumeria graminis f. sp. hordei in non-host Arabidopsis and in the Arabidopsis penetration 1-1 (pen1-1) mutant, which shows increased penetration susceptibility to non-adapted pathogens. Comparison of pen1-1 with wild-type Arabidopsis showed that the actin, microtubule and ER networks all responded in the pen1-1 mutant as they do in wild-type plants. Actin microfilaments became focused on the penetration site and ER accumulated at the penetration site while the overall arrangement of microtubule arrays was largely unaffected. These results indicate that the block in vesicle secretion conferred by the pen1-1 mutation does not interfere with cytoplasmic aggregation or recruitment of actin or ER to the infection site. In the pen1-1 mutant, the higher rate of successful penetration by the non-adapted pathogen results in an increased incidence of hypersensitive cell death. In dying cells, the structure of the ER was rapidly destroyed, in contrast to actin microfilaments and microtubules which remained for a longer time after the initiation of cell death. In Arabidopsis with GFP-tagged tubulin, fluorescent vesicle-like structures appeared near the cell surface during the initiation of cell death. In both wild-type and pen1-1 mutant plants, in cells surrounding the dying cell, bundles of actin microfilaments focused on the anticlinal walls adjacent to the dead cell and ER accumulated in the cortical cytoplasm near the dead cell. These observations suggest that the neighbouring, non-infected cells use actin-based transport to secrete material at the surface adjacent to the dead cell. They

  20. Attachment reorganization following divorce: normative processes and individual differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sbarra, David A; Borelli, Jessica L

    2018-03-21

    This paper uses attachment theory as a lens for reviewing contemporary research on how adults cope with marital separation and loss. The first section of the paper discusses the process of normative attachment reorganization, or the psychology of adaptive grief responses following relationship transitions. We argue that changes two processes, in particular, can be uses to track changes in this normative reorganization process: narrative coherence and self-concept clarity. The second section of the paper suggest that individual differences in attachment anxiety and avoidance shape the variability in this normative reorganization process, largely as a result of the characteristic ways in which these styles organize emotion-regulatory tendencies. The paper closes with a series of integrative questions for future research, including a call for new studies aimed at understanding under what contexts anxiety and avoidance may be adaptive in promoting emotion recovery to separation and divorce experiences. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Adaptive Reorganization of German Special Operations Forces

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-01

    Noetzel and Benjamin Schreer, “Spezialkräfte der Bundeswehr: Strukturerfordernisse für den Auslandseinsatz,” SWP-Studie, Deutsches Institut für...131. B. J. Hodge , William Anthony, and Lawrence Gales, quoted in “Organizational Design for Special Operations,” Erik Jansen...Belgium: NSCC, 2008. Noetzel, Timo and Benjamin Schreer. “Spezialkräfte der Bundeswehr: Strukturerfordernisse für den Auslandseinsatz.” SWP-Studie

  2. Dynamic epigenetic responses to muscle contraction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Morten; Zierath, Juleen R; Barrès, Romain

    2014-01-01

    Skeletal muscle is a malleable organ that responds to a single acute exercise bout by inducing the expression of genes involved in structural, metabolic and functional adaptations. Several epigenetic mechanisms including histone H4 deacetylation and loss of promoter methylation have been implicated...... in modifying exercise-responsive gene expression. These transient changes suggest that epigenetic mechanisms are not restricted to early stages of human development but are broad dynamic controllers of genomic plasticity in response to environmental factors....

  3. Environment, epigenetics and reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skinner, Michael K

    2017-07-01

    A conference summary of the third biannual Kenya Africa Conference "Environment, Epigenetics and Reproduction" is provided. A partial special Environmental Epigenetics issue containing a number of papers in Volume 3, Issue 3 and 4 are discussed.

  4. Landscaping plant epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKeown, Peter C; Spillane, Charles

    2014-01-01

    The understanding of epigenetic mechanisms is necessary for assessing the potential impacts of epigenetics on plant growth, development and reproduction, and ultimately for the response of these factors to evolutionary pressures and crop breeding programs. This volume highlights the latest in laboratory and bioinformatic techniques used for the investigation of epigenetic phenomena in plants. Such techniques now allow genome-wide analyses of epigenetic regulation and help to advance our understanding of how epigenetic regulatory mechanisms affect cellular and genome function. To set the scene, we begin with a short background of how the field of epigenetics has evolved, with a particular focus on plant epigenetics. We consider what has historically been understood by the term "epigenetics" before turning to the advances in biochemistry, molecular biology, and genetics which have led to current-day definitions of the term. Following this, we pay attention to key discoveries in the field of epigenetics that have emerged from the study of unusual and enigmatic phenomena in plants. Many of these phenomena have involved cases of non-Mendelian inheritance and have often been dismissed as mere curiosities prior to the elucidation of their molecular mechanisms. In the penultimate section, consideration is given to how advances in molecular techniques are opening the doors to a more comprehensive understanding of epigenetic phenomena in plants. We conclude by assessing some opportunities, challenges, and techniques for epigenetic research in both model and non-model plants, in particular for advancing understanding of the regulation of genome function by epigenetic mechanisms.

  5. Environmental chemical exposures and human epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Lifang; Zhang, Xiao; Wang, Dong; Baccarelli, Andrea

    2012-01-01

    Every year more than 13 million deaths worldwide are due to environmental pollutants, and approximately 24% of diseases are caused by environmental exposures that might be averted through preventive measures. Rapidly growing evidence has linked environmental pollutants with epigenetic variations, including changes in DNA methylation, histone modifications and microRNAs. Environ mental chemicals and epigenetic changes All of these mechanisms are likely to play important roles in disease aetiology, and their modifications due to environmental pollutants might provide further understanding of disease aetiology, as well as biomarkers reflecting exposures to environmental pollutants and/or predicting the risk of future disease. We summarize the findings on epigenetic alterations related to environmental chemical exposures, and propose mechanisms of action by means of which the exposures may cause such epigenetic changes. We discuss opportunities, challenges and future directions for future epidemiology research in environmental epigenomics. Future investigations are needed to solve methodological and practical challenges, including uncertainties about stability over time of epigenomic changes induced by the environment, tissue specificity of epigenetic alterations, validation of laboratory methods, and adaptation of bioinformatic and biostatistical methods to high-throughput epigenomics. In addition, there are numerous reports of epigenetic modifications arising following exposure to environmental toxicants, but most have not been directly linked to disease endpoints. To complete our discussion, we also briefly summarize the diseases that have been linked to environmental chemicals-related epigenetic changes. PMID:22253299

  6. Epigenetics: ambiguities and implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stotz, Karola; Griffiths, Paul

    2016-12-01

    Everyone has heard of 'epigenetics', but the term means different things to different researchers. Four important contemporary meanings are outlined in this paper. Epigenetics in its various senses has implications for development, heredity, and evolution, and also for medicine. Concerning development, it cements the vision of a reactive genome strongly coupled to its environment. Concerning heredity, both narrowly epigenetic and broader 'exogenetic' systems of inheritance play important roles in the construction of phenotypes. A thoroughly epigenetic model of development and evolution was Waddington's aim when he introduced the term 'epigenetics' in the 1940s, but it has taken the modern development of molecular epigenetics to realize this aim. In the final sections of the paper we briefly outline some further implications of epigenetics for medicine and for the nature/nurture debate.

  7. The evolutionary implications of epigenetic inheritance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jablonka, Eva

    2017-10-06

    The Modern Evolutionary Synthesis (MS) forged in the mid-twentieth century was built on a notion of heredity that excluded soft inheritance, the inheritance of the effects of developmental modifications. However, the discovery of molecular mechanisms that generate random and developmentally induced epigenetic variations is leading to a broadening of the notion of biological heredity that has consequences for ideas about evolution. After presenting some old challenges to the MS that were raised, among others, by Karl Popper, I discuss recent research on epigenetic inheritance, which provides experimental and theoretical support for these challenges. There is now good evidence that epigenetic inheritance is ubiquitous and is involved in adaptive evolution and macroevolution. I argue that the many evolutionary consequences of epigenetic inheritance open up new research areas and require the extension of the evolutionary synthesis beyond the current neo-Darwinian model.

  8. Epigenetics and Autoimmune Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quintero-Ronderos, Paula; Montoya-Ortiz, Gladis

    2012-01-01

    Epigenetics is defined as the study of all inheritable and potentially reversible changes in genome function that do not alter the nucleotide sequence within the DNA. Epigenetic mechanisms such as DNA methylation, histone modification, nucleosome positioning, and microRNAs (miRNAs) are essential to carry out key functions in the regulation of gene expression. Therefore, the epigenetic mechanisms are a window to understanding the possible mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of complex diseases such as autoimmune diseases. It is noteworthy that autoimmune diseases do not have the same epidemiology, pathology, or symptoms but do have a common origin that can be explained by the sharing of immunogenetic mechanisms. Currently, epigenetic research is looking for disruption in one or more epigenetic mechanisms to provide new insights into autoimmune diseases. The identification of cell-specific targets of epigenetic deregulation will serve us as clinical markers for diagnosis, disease progression, and therapy approaches. PMID:22536485

  9. Epigenetics and Cellular Metabolism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenyi Xu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Living eukaryotic systems evolve delicate cellular mechanisms for responding to various environmental signals. Among them, epigenetic machinery (DNA methylation, histone modifications, microRNAs, etc. is the hub in transducing external stimuli into transcriptional response. Emerging evidence reveals the concept that epigenetic signatures are essential for the proper maintenance of cellular metabolism. On the other hand, the metabolite, a main environmental input, can also influence the processing of epigenetic memory. Here, we summarize the recent research progress in the epigenetic regulation of cellular metabolism and discuss how the dysfunction of epigenetic machineries influences the development of metabolic disorders such as diabetes and obesity; then, we focus on discussing the notion that manipulating metabolites, the fuel of cell metabolism, can function as a strategy for interfering epigenetic machinery and its related disease progression as well.

  10. Epigenetic Landscape during Coronavirus Infection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra Schäfer

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Coronaviruses (CoV comprise a large group of emerging human and animal pathogens, including the highly pathogenic severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV strains. The molecular mechanisms regulating emerging coronavirus pathogenesis are complex and include virus–host interactions associated with entry, replication, egress and innate immune control. Epigenetics research investigates the genetic and non-genetic factors that regulate phenotypic variation, usually caused by external and environmental factors that alter host expression patterns and performance without any change in the underlying genotype. Epigenetic modifications, such as histone modifications, DNA methylation, chromatin remodeling, and non-coding RNAs, function as important regulators that remodel host chromatin, altering host expression patterns and networks in a highly flexible manner. For most of the past two and a half decades, research has focused on the molecular mechanisms by which RNA viruses antagonize the signaling and sensing components that regulate induction of the host innate immune and antiviral defense programs upon infection. More recently, a growing body of evidence supports the hypothesis that viruses, even lytic RNA viruses that replicate in the cytoplasm, have developed intricate, highly evolved, and well-coordinated processes that are designed to regulate the host epigenome, and control host innate immune antiviral defense processes, thereby promoting robust virus replication and pathogenesis. In this article, we discuss the strategies that are used to evaluate the mechanisms by which viruses regulate the host epigenome, especially focusing on highly pathogenic respiratory RNA virus infections as a model. By combining measures of epigenome reorganization with RNA and proteomic datasets, we articulate a spatial-temporal data integration approach to identify regulatory genomic clusters

  11. Epigenetics, Nervous System Tumors, and Cancer Stem Cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qureshi, Irfan A.; Mehler, Mark F.

    2011-01-01

    Recent advances have begun to elucidate how epigenetic regulatory mechanisms are responsible for establishing and maintaining cell identity during development and adult life and how the disruption of these processes is, not surprisingly, one of the hallmarks of cancer. In this review, we describe the major epigenetic mechanisms (i.e., DNA methylation, histone and chromatin modification, non-coding RNA deployment, RNA editing, and nuclear reorganization) and discuss the broad spectrum of epigenetic alterations that have been uncovered in pediatric and adult nervous system tumors. We also highlight emerging evidence that suggests epigenetic deregulation is a characteristic feature of so-called cancer stem cells (CSCs), which are thought to be present in a range of nervous system tumors and responsible for tumor maintenance, progression, treatment resistance, and recurrence. We believe that better understanding how epigenetic mechanisms operate in neural cells and identifying the etiologies and consequences of epigenetic deregulation in tumor cells and CSCs, in particular, are likely to promote the development of enhanced molecular diagnostics and more targeted and effective therapeutic agents for treating recalcitrant nervous system tumors

  12. Epigenetics, Nervous System Tumors, and Cancer Stem Cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qureshi, Irfan A. [Rosyln and Leslie Goldstein Laboratory for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Institute for Brain Disorders and Neural Regeneration, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Department of Neurology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Rose F. Kennedy Center for Research on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Mehler, Mark F., E-mail: mark.mehler@einstein.yu.edu [Rosyln and Leslie Goldstein Laboratory for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Institute for Brain Disorders and Neural Regeneration, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Department of Neurology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Department of Neuroscience, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States); Rose F. Kennedy Center for Research on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, NY 10461 (United States)

    2011-09-13

    Recent advances have begun to elucidate how epigenetic regulatory mechanisms are responsible for establishing and maintaining cell identity during development and adult life and how the disruption of these processes is, not surprisingly, one of the hallmarks of cancer. In this review, we describe the major epigenetic mechanisms (i.e., DNA methylation, histone and chromatin modification, non-coding RNA deployment, RNA editing, and nuclear reorganization) and discuss the broad spectrum of epigenetic alterations that have been uncovered in pediatric and adult nervous system tumors. We also highlight emerging evidence that suggests epigenetic deregulation is a characteristic feature of so-called cancer stem cells (CSCs), which are thought to be present in a range of nervous system tumors and responsible for tumor maintenance, progression, treatment resistance, and recurrence. We believe that better understanding how epigenetic mechanisms operate in neural cells and identifying the etiologies and consequences of epigenetic deregulation in tumor cells and CSCs, in particular, are likely to promote the development of enhanced molecular diagnostics and more targeted and effective therapeutic agents for treating recalcitrant nervous system tumors.

  13. Epigenetics in liver disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mann, Derek A

    2014-10-01

    Epigenetics is a term that encompasses a variety of regulatory processes that are able to crosstalk in order to influence gene expression and cell phenotype in response to environmental cues. A deep understanding of epigenetics offers the potential for fresh insights into the basis for complex chronic diseases and improved diagnostic and prognostic tools. Moreover, as epigenetic modifications are highly plastic and responsive to the environment, there is much excitement around the theme of epigenetic therapeutics, including not only new drugs but also more informed patient advice on lifestyle choices and their impact on pathology. This review briefly explains the molecular nature of the individual regulatory process that constitute epigenetics, including DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling, transcriptional control, and noncoding RNAs. The ways in which these epigenetic mechanisms influence liver physiology and disease will be considered in detail, particularly in the context of cancer, fibrosis, and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. The current limitations associated with epigenetic profiling and therapeutics in liver disease are discussed, as is the intriguing possibility that environmental-induced epigenetic changes may become stable and heritable. The aim of the review is to inform hepatologists of the emerging key epigenetic ideas of relevance to liver diseases that are highly likely to form a component of patient management and care in the next decade. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Hepatology published by Wiley on behalf of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.

  14. Epigenetics and primary care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Robert; Saul, Robert A

    2013-12-01

    Epigenetics, the study of functionally relevant chemical modifications to DNA that do not involve a change in the DNA nucleotide sequence, is at the interface between research and clinical medicine. Research on epigenetic marks, which regulate gene expression independently of the underlying genetic code, has dramatically changed our understanding of the interplay between genes and the environment. This interplay alters human biology and developmental trajectories, and can lead to programmed human disease years after the environmental exposure. In addition, epigenetic marks are potentially heritable. In this article, we discuss the underlying concepts of epigenetics and address its current and potential applicability for primary care providers.

  15. Epigenetic considerations in aquaculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mackenzie R. Gavery

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetics has attracted considerable attention with respect to its potential value in many areas of agricultural production, particularly under conditions where the environment can be manipulated or natural variation exists. Here we introduce key concepts and definitions of epigenetic mechanisms, including DNA methylation, histone modifications and non-coding RNA, review the current understanding of epigenetics in both fish and shellfish, and propose key areas of aquaculture where epigenetics could be applied. The first key area is environmental manipulation, where the intention is to induce an ‘epigenetic memory’ either within or between generations to produce a desired phenotype. The second key area is epigenetic selection, which, alone or combined with genetic selection, may increase the reliability of producing animals with desired phenotypes. Based on aspects of life history and husbandry practices in aquaculture species, the application of epigenetic knowledge could significantly affect the productivity and sustainability of aquaculture practices. Conversely, clarifying the role of epigenetic mechanisms in aquaculture species may upend traditional assumptions about selection practices. Ultimately, there are still many unanswered questions regarding how epigenetic mechanisms might be leveraged in aquaculture.

  16. [Early attachement relationships and epigenetic customization].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocchi, Giordana; Serio, Valentina; Carluccio, Giuseppe Mattia; Marini, Isabella; Meuti, Valentina; Zaccagni, Michela; Giacchetti, Nicoletta; Aceti, Franca

    2015-01-01

    Recently, new findings in epigenetic science switched the focus from the observation of physiological intragenomic dynamics to the idea of an environmental co-construction of phenotypic expression. In psichodynamic field, objectual relations and attachement theoreticians emphasized the interpersonal dimension of individual development, focusing the attention on the relational matrix of self organization. The construction of stable affective-behavioral traits throughout different parenting styles has actually found a coincidence in ethological studies, which have explored the epigenetic processes underlying the relationship between caregiving and HPA stress responsiveness. An adequate parenting style seems to support affective regulation throughout psychobiological hidden moderators, which would tend to rebalance the physiological systems homeostasis; an unconfident attachment style would promote, on the other hand, the allostatic load rise. Sites of longlife epigenetic susceptibility have also been identified in humans; although associated with risk of maladaptive developing in adverse environmental conditions, they seem to confer protection under favorable conditions. This persisting possibility of reorganization of stable traits throughout lifetime, which seems to be activated by a relevant environmental input, grant to significant relationships, and to therapeutical one as well, an implicit reconditioning potential which could result into the configuration of new stable affective-behavioral styles.

  17. Epigenetics Research on the International Space Station

    Science.gov (United States)

    Love, John; Cooley, Vic

    2016-01-01

    The International Space Station (ISS) is a state-of-the orbiting laboratory focused on advancing science and technology research. Experiments being conducted on the ISS include investigations in the emerging field of Epigenetics. Epigenetics refers to stably heritable changes in gene expression or cellular phenotype (the transcriptional potential of a cell) resulting from changes in a chromosome without alterations to the underlying DNA nucleotide sequence (the genetic code), which are caused by external or environmental factors, such as spaceflight microgravity. Molecular mechanisms associated with epigenetic alterations regulating gene expression patterns include covalent chemical modifications of DNA (e.g., methylation) or histone proteins (e.g., acetylation, phorphorylation, or ubiquitination). For example, Epigenetics ("Epigenetics in Spaceflown C. elegans") is a recent JAXA investigation examining whether adaptations to microgravity transmit from one cell generation to another without changing the basic DNA of the organism. Mouse Epigenetics ("Transcriptome Analysis and Germ-Cell Development Analysis of Mice in Space") investigates molecular alterations in organ-specific gene expression patterns and epigenetic modifications, and analyzes murine germ cell development during long term spaceflight, as well as assessing changes in offspring DNA. NASA's first foray into human Omics research, the Twins Study ("Differential effects of homozygous twin astronauts associated with differences in exposure to spaceflight factors"), includes investigations evaluating differential epigenetic effects via comprehensive whole genome analysis, the landscape of DNA and RNA methylation, and biomolecular changes by means of longitudinal integrated multi-omics research. And the inaugural Genes in Space student challenge experiment (Genes in Space-1) is aimed at understanding how epigenetics plays a role in immune system dysregulation by assaying DNA methylation in immune cells

  18. Epigenetic memory in mammals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zoe eMigicovsky

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetic information can be passed on from one generation to another via DNA methylation, histone modifications and changes in small RNAs, a process called epigenetic memory. During a mammal’s lifecycle epigenetic reprogramming, or the resetting of most epigenetic marks, occurs twice. The first instance of reprogramming occurs in primordial germ cells and the second occurs following fertilization. These processes may be both passive and active. In order for epigenetic inheritance to occur the epigenetic modifications must be able to escape reprogramming. There are several examples supporting this non-Mendelian mechanism of inheritance including the prepacking of early developmental genes in histones instead of protamines in sperm, genomic imprinting via methylation marks, the retention of CenH3 in mammalian sperm and the inheritance of piwi-associated interfering RNAs. The ability of mammals to pass on epigenetic information to their progeny provides clear evidence that inheritance is not restricted to DNA sequence and epigenetics plays a key role in producing viable offspring.

  19. Epigenetics and cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Anders H; van Lohuizen, Maarten

    2004-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms act to change the accessibility of chromatin to transcriptional regulation locally and globally via modifications of the DNA and by modification or rearrangement of nucleosomes. Epigenetic gene regulation collaborates with genetic alterations in cancer development. This is e......Epigenetic mechanisms act to change the accessibility of chromatin to transcriptional regulation locally and globally via modifications of the DNA and by modification or rearrangement of nucleosomes. Epigenetic gene regulation collaborates with genetic alterations in cancer development....... This is evident from every aspect of tumor biology including cell growth and differentiation, cell cycle control, DNA repair, angiogenesis, migration, and evasion of host immunosurveillance. In contrast to genetic cancer causes, the possibility of reversing epigenetic codes may provide new targets for therapeutic...

  20. Scrutinizing the epigenetics revolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meloni, Maurizio; Testa, Giuseppe

    2014-11-01

    Epigenetics is one of the most rapidly expanding fields in the life sciences. Its rise is frequently framed as a revolutionary turn that heralds a new epoch both for gene-based epistemology and for the wider discourse on life that pervades knowledge-intensive societies of the molecular age. The fundamentals of this revolution remain however to be scrutinized, and indeed the very contours of what counts as 'epigenetic' are often blurred. This is reflected also in the mounting discourse on the societal implications of epigenetics, in which vast expectations coexist with significant uncertainty about what aspects of this science are most relevant for politics or policy alike. This is therefore a suitable time to reflect on the directions that social theory could most productively take in the scrutiny of this revolution. Here we take this opportunity in both its scholarly and normative dimension, that is, proposing a roadmap for social theorizing on epigenetics that does not shy away from, and indeed hopefully guides, the framing of its most socially relevant outputs. To this end, we start with an epistemological reappraisal of epigenetic discourse that valorizes the blurring of meanings as a critical asset for the field and privileged analytical entry point. We then propose three paths of investigation. The first looks at the structuring elements of controversies and visions around epigenetics. The second probes the mutual constitution between the epigenetic reordering of living phenomena and the normative settlements that orient individual and collective responsibilities. The third highlights the material import of epigenetics and the molecularization of culture that it mediates. We suggest that these complementary strands provide both an epistemically and socially self-reflective framework to advance the study of epigenetics as a molecular juncture between nature and nurture and thus as the new critical frontier in the social studies of the life sciences.

  1. Scrutinizing the epigenetics revolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meloni, Maurizio; Testa, Giuseppe

    2014-01-01

    Epigenetics is one of the most rapidly expanding fields in the life sciences. Its rise is frequently framed as a revolutionary turn that heralds a new epoch both for gene-based epistemology and for the wider discourse on life that pervades knowledge-intensive societies of the molecular age. The fundamentals of this revolution remain however to be scrutinized, and indeed the very contours of what counts as ‘epigenetic' are often blurred. This is reflected also in the mounting discourse on the societal implications of epigenetics, in which vast expectations coexist with significant uncertainty about what aspects of this science are most relevant for politics or policy alike. This is therefore a suitable time to reflect on the directions that social theory could most productively take in the scrutiny of this revolution. Here we take this opportunity in both its scholarly and normative dimension, that is, proposing a roadmap for social theorizing on epigenetics that does not shy away from, and indeed hopefully guides, the framing of its most socially relevant outputs. To this end, we start with an epistemological reappraisal of epigenetic discourse that valorizes the blurring of meanings as a critical asset for the field and privileged analytical entry point. We then propose three paths of investigation. The first looks at the structuring elements of controversies and visions around epigenetics. The second probes the mutual constitution between the epigenetic reordering of living phenomena and the normative settlements that orient individual and collective responsibilities. The third highlights the material import of epigenetics and the molecularization of culture that it mediates. We suggest that these complementary strands provide both an epistemically and socially self-reflective framework to advance the study of epigenetics as a molecular juncture between nature and nurture and thus as the new critical frontier in the social studies of the life sciences. PMID

  2. Homocysteine, alcoholism and its potential epigenetic mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamat, Pradip K.; Mallonee, Carissa J.; George, Akash K.; Tyagi, Suresh C.; Tyagi, Neetu

    2016-01-01

    Alcohol is the most socially accepted addictive drug. Alcohol consumption is associated with some health problems such as neurological, cognitive, behavioral deficits, cancer, heart and liver disease. Mechanisms of alcohol-induced toxicity are presently not yet clear. One of the mechanisms underlying alcohol toxicity has to do with its interaction with amino acid-homocysteine (Hcy), which has been linked with brain neurotoxicity. Elevated homocysteine (Hcy) impairs with various physiological mechanisms in the body, especially metabolic pathways. Hcy metabolism is predominantly controlled by epigenetic regulation such as DNA methylation, histone modifications, and acetylation. An alteration in these processes leads to epigenetic modification. Therefore, in this review, we summarize the role of Hcy metabolism abnormalities in alcohol-induced toxicity with epigenetic adaptation and their influences on cerebrovascular pathology. PMID:27805256

  3. Epigenetic mechanisms in neurogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Bing; Christian, Kimberly M.; He, Chuan; Jin, Peng; Ming, Guo-li; Song, Hongjun

    2017-01-01

    In the embryonic and adult brain, neural stem cells proliferate and give rise to neurons and glia through highly regulated processes. Epigenetic mechanisms — including DNA and histone modifications, as well as regulation by non-coding RNAs — have pivotal roles in different stages of neurogenesis. Aberrant epigenetic regulation also contributes to the pathogenesis of various brain disorders. Here, we review recent advances in our understanding of epigenetic regulation in neurogenesis and its dysregulation in brain disorders, including discussion of newly identified DNA cytosine modifications. We also briefly cover the emerging field of epitranscriptomics, which involves modifications of mRNAs and long non-coding RNAs. PMID:27334043

  4. Epigenetic Regulation in Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pikaard, Craig S.; Mittelsten Scheid, Ortrun

    2014-01-01

    The study of epigenetics in plants has a long and rich history, from initial descriptions of non-Mendelian gene behaviors to seminal discoveries of chromatin-modifying proteins and RNAs that mediate gene silencing in most eukaryotes, including humans. Genetic screens in the model plant Arabidopsis have been particularly rewarding, identifying more than 130 epigenetic regulators thus far. The diversity of epigenetic pathways in plants is remarkable, presumably contributing to the phenotypic plasticity of plant postembryonic development and the ability to survive and reproduce in unpredictable environments. PMID:25452385

  5. Epigenetic Mechanisms in Asthma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeVries, Avery; Vercelli, Donata

    2016-03-01

    Asthma and allergic diseases are among the most prevalent chronic noncommunicable diseases of childhood, but the underlying pathogenetic mechanisms are poorly understood. Because epigenetic mechanisms link gene regulation to environmental cues and developmental trajectories, their contribution to asthma and allergy pathogenesis is under active investigation. DNA methylation signatures associated with concurrent disease and with the development of asthma during childhood asthma have been identified, but their significance is not easily interpretable. On the other hand, the characterization of early epigenetic predictors of asthma points to a potential role of epigenetic mechanisms in regulating the inception of, and the susceptibility to, this disease.

  6. Epigenetics: SUPERMAN dresses up.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lachner, Monika

    2002-06-25

    DNA and histone methylation have been implicated in epigenetic gene regulation. Recent studies in Neurospora and now Arabidopsis indicate that histone methylation can direct DNA methylation, suggesting that these two methylation systems have been functionally linked during evolution.

  7. Eating Disorders and Epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thaler, Lea; Steiger, Howard

    2017-01-01

    Eating disorders (EDs) are characterized by intense preoccupation with shape and weight and maladaptive eating practices. The complex of symptoms that characterize EDs often arise through the activation of latent genetic potentials by environmental exposures, and epigenetic mechanisms are believed to link environmental exposures to gene expression. This chapter provides an overview of genetic factors acting in the etiology of EDs. It then provides a background to the hypothesis that epigenetic mechanisms link stresses such as obstetric complications and childhood abuse as well as effects of malnutrition to eating disorders (EDs). The chapter then summarizes the emerging body of literature on epigenetics and EDs-mainly studies on DNA methylation in samples of anorexia and bulimia. The available evidence base suggests that an epigenetically informed perspective contributes in valuable ways to the understanding of why people develop EDs.

  8. Epigenetics: beyond genes

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Fossey, A

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Gene regulatory processes lead to differential gene expression and are referred to as epigenetic phenomena; these are ubiquitous processes in the biological world. These reversible heritable changes concern DNA and RNA, their interactions...

  9. Whole Genome Epigenetics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Carmell, Michelle A; Hannon, Gregory J

    2005-01-01

    .... However, this is only part of the picture. Increasingly, we are learning that epigenetic changes, that is, changes in chromatin structure, are critically important in regulating cellular gene expression...

  10. Whole Genome Epigenetics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Carmell, Michelle A; Hannon, Gregory J

    2004-01-01

    .... However, this is only part of the picture. Increasingly, we are learning that epigenetic changes, that is, changes in chromatin structure, are critically important in regulating cellular gene expression...

  11. Whole Genome Epigenetics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Carmell, Michelle

    2003-01-01

    .... However, this is only part of the picture. Increasingly, we are learning that epigenetic changes, that is, changes in chromatin structure, are critically important in regulation cellular gene expression...

  12. Epigenetics and pharmacology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stefanska, Barbara; MacEwan, David J

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in the understanding of gene regulation have shown there to be much more regulation of the genome than first thought, through epigenetic mechanisms. These epigenetic mechanisms are systems that have evolved to either switch off gene activity altogether, or fine-tune any existing genetic activation. Such systems are present in all genes and include chromatin modifications and remodelling, DNA methylation (such as CpG island methylation rates) and histone covalent modifications (e.g. acetylation, methylation), RNA interference by short interfering RNAs (siRNAs) and long non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs). These systems regulate genomic activity ‘beyond’ simple transcriptional factor inducer or repressor function of genes to generate mRNA. Epigenetic regulation of gene activity has been shown to be important in maintaining normal phenotypic activity of cells, as well as having a role in development and diseases such as cancer and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's. Newer classes of drugs regulate epigenetic mechanisms to counteract disease states in humans. The reports in this issue describe some advances in epigenetic understanding that relate to human disease, and our ability to control these mechanisms by pharmacological means. Increasingly the importance of epigenetics is being uncovered – it is pharmacology that will have to keep pace. PMID:25966315

  13. Firm Reorganization : Social Control or Social Contract?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aalbers, Hendrik Leendert; Dolfsma, Wilfred; Blinde-Leerentveld, Rowan

    Firm reorganizations deeply affect employees. Management can reorganize in different ways, focusing on costs or acknowledging the involvement of employees. The latter implies following a social contract that complements incomplete (formal) labor contracts. Little is known about how the way in which

  14. Massive cortical reorganization in sighted Braille readers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siuda-Krzywicka, Katarzyna; Bola, Łukasz; Paplińska, Małgorzata; Sumera, Ewa; Jednoróg, Katarzyna; Marchewka, Artur; Śliwińska, Magdalena W; Amedi, Amir; Szwed, Marcin

    2016-03-15

    The brain is capable of large-scale reorganization in blindness or after massive injury. Such reorganization crosses the division into separate sensory cortices (visual, somatosensory...). As its result, the visual cortex of the blind becomes active during tactile Braille reading. Although the possibility of such reorganization in the normal, adult brain has been raised, definitive evidence has been lacking. Here, we demonstrate such extensive reorganization in normal, sighted adults who learned Braille while their brain activity was investigated with fMRI and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Subjects showed enhanced activity for tactile reading in the visual cortex, including the visual word form area (VWFA) that was modulated by their Braille reading speed and strengthened resting-state connectivity between visual and somatosensory cortices. Moreover, TMS disruption of VWFA activity decreased their tactile reading accuracy. Our results indicate that large-scale reorganization is a viable mechanism recruited when learning complex skills.

  15. Hierarchical reorganization of dimensions in OLAP visualizations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafon, Sébastien; Bouali, Fatma; Guinot, Christiane; Venturini, Gilles

    2013-11-01

    In this paper, we propose a new method for the visual reorganization of online analytical processing (OLAP) cubes that aims at improving their visualization. Our method addresses dimensions with hierarchically organized members. It uses a genetic algorithm that reorganizes k-ary trees. Genetic operators perform permutations of subtrees to optimize a visual homogeneity function. We propose several ways to reorganize an OLAP cube depending on which set of members is selected for the reorganization: all of the members, only the displayed members, or the members at a given level (level by level approach). The results that are evaluated by using optimization criteria show that our algorithm has a reliable performance even when it is limited to 1 minute runs. Our algorithm was integrated in an interactive 3D interface for OLAP. A user study was conducted to evaluate our approach with users. The results highlight the usefulness of reorganization in two OLAP tasks.

  16. Epigenetics application in the diagnosis and treatment of bladder cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harb-de la Rosa, Alfredo; Acker, Matthew; Kumar, Raj A; Manoharan, Murugesan

    2015-10-01

    Bladder cancer is the sixth most common cancer in the Western world. Patients with bladder cancer require close monitoring, which may include frequent cystoscopy and urine cytology. Such monitoring results in significant health care cost. The application of epigenetics may allow for a risk adapted approach and more cost-effective method of monitoring. A number of epigenetic changes have been described for many cancer sites, including the urinary bladder. In this review, we discuss the use of epigenetics in bladder cancer and the potential diagnostic and therapeutic applications. A comprehensive search of the English medical literature was conducted in PubMed using the terms microRNA regulation, DNA methylation, histone modification and bladder cancer. The most important epigenetic changes include DNA methylation, histone modification and microRNA regulation. Both DNA hypomethylation and hypermethylation have been associated with higher rate of cancer. The association of epigenetic changes with bladder cancer has led to the research of its diagnostic and prognostic implications as well as to the development of novel drugs to target these changes with the aim of achieving a survival benefit. Recently, epigenetics has been shown to play a much greater role than previously anticipated in the initiation and propagation of many tumors. The use of epigenetics for the diagnosis and treatment of bladder cancer is an evolving and promising field. The possibility of reversing epigenetic changes may facilitate additional cancer treatment options in the future.

  17. Genome reorganization in F1 hybrids uncovers the role of retrotransposons in reproductive isolation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senerchia, Natacha; Felber, François; Parisod, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Interspecific hybridization leads to new interactions among divergent genomes, revealing the nature of genetic incompatibilities having accumulated during and after the origin of species. Conflicts associated with misregulation of transposable elements (TEs) in hybrids expectedly result in their activation and genome-wide changes that may be key to species boundaries. Repetitive genomes of wild wheats have diverged under differential dynamics of specific long terminal repeat retrotransposons (LTR-RTs), offering unparalleled opportunities to address the underpinnings of plant genome reorganization by selfish sequences. Using reciprocal F1 hybrids between three Aegilops species, restructuring and epigenetic repatterning was assessed at random and LTR-RT sequences with amplified fragment length polymorphism and sequence-specific amplified polymorphisms as well as their methylation-sensitive counterparts, respectively. Asymmetrical reorganization of LTR-RT families predicted to cause conflicting interactions matched differential survival of F1 hybrids. Consistent with the genome shock model, increasing divergence of merged LTR-RTs yielded higher levels of changes in corresponding genome fractions and lead to repeated reorganization of LTR-RT sequences in F1 hybrids. Such non-random reorganization of hybrid genomes is coherent with the necessary repression of incompatible TE loci in support of hybrid viability and indicates that TE-driven genomic conflicts may represent an overlooked factor supporting reproductive isolation. PMID:25716787

  18. Adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broom, Donald M

    2006-01-01

    The term adaptation is used in biology in three different ways. It may refer to changes which occur at the cell and organ level, or at the individual level, or at the level of gene action and evolutionary processes. Adaptation by cells, especially nerve cells helps in: communication within the body, the distinguishing of stimuli, the avoidance of overload and the conservation of energy. The time course and complexity of these mechanisms varies. Adaptive characters of organisms, including adaptive behaviours, increase fitness so this adaptation is evolutionary. The major part of this paper concerns adaptation by individuals and its relationships to welfare. In complex animals, feed forward control is widely used. Individuals predict problems and adapt by acting before the environmental effect is substantial. Much of adaptation involves brain control and animals have a set of needs, located in the brain and acting largely via motivational mechanisms, to regulate life. Needs may be for resources but are also for actions and stimuli which are part of the mechanism which has evolved to obtain the resources. Hence pigs do not just need food but need to be able to carry out actions like rooting in earth or manipulating materials which are part of foraging behaviour. The welfare of an individual is its state as regards its attempts to cope with its environment. This state includes various adaptive mechanisms including feelings and those which cope with disease. The part of welfare which is concerned with coping with pathology is health. Disease, which implies some significant effect of pathology, always results in poor welfare. Welfare varies over a range from very good, when adaptation is effective and there are feelings of pleasure or contentment, to very poor. A key point concerning the concept of individual adaptation in relation to welfare is that welfare may be good or poor while adaptation is occurring. Some adaptation is very easy and energetically cheap and

  19. The physics of epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortini, Ruggero; Barbi, Maria; Caré, Bertrand R.; Lavelle, Christophe; Lesne, Annick; Mozziconacci, Julien; Victor, Jean-Marc

    2016-04-01

    In higher organisms, all cells share the same genome, but every cell expresses only a limited and specific set of genes that defines the cell type. During cell division, not only the genome, but also the cell type is inherited by the daughter cells. This intriguing phenomenon is achieved by a variety of processes that have been collectively termed epigenetics: the stable and inheritable changes in gene expression patterns. This article reviews the extremely rich and exquisitely multiscale physical mechanisms that govern the biological processes behind the initiation, spreading, and inheritance of epigenetic states. These include not only the changes in the molecular properties associated with the chemical modifications of DNA and histone proteins, such as methylation and acetylation, but also less conventional changes, typically in the physics that governs the three-dimensional organization of the genome in cell nuclei. Strikingly, to achieve stability and heritability of epigenetic states, cells take advantage of many different physical principles, such as the universal behavior of polymers and copolymers, the general features of dynamical systems, and the electrostatic and mechanical properties related to chemical modifications of DNA and histones. By putting the complex biological literature in this new light, the emerging picture is that a limited set of general physical rules play a key role in initiating, shaping, and transmitting this crucial "epigenetic landscape." This new perspective not only allows one to rationalize the normal cellular functions, but also helps to understand the emergence of pathological states, in which the epigenetic landscape becomes dysfunctional.

  20. Dispersal governs the reorganization of ecological networks under environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Patrick L; Gonzalez, Andrew

    2017-05-08

    Ecological networks, such as food webs, mutualist webs and host-parasite webs, are reorganizing as species abundances and spatial distributions shift in response to environmental change. Current theoretical expectations for how this reorganization will occur are available for competition or for parts of interaction networks, but these may not extend to more complex networks. Here we use metacommunity theory to develop new expectations for how complex networks will reorganize under environmental change, and show that dispersal is crucial for determining the degree to which networks will retain their composition and structure. When dispersal between habitat patches is low, all types of species interactions act as a strong determinant for whether species can colonize suitable habitats. This colonization resistance drives species turnover, which breaks apart current networks and leads to the formation of new networks. However, when dispersal rates are increased, colonists arrive in high abundance in habitats where they are well adapted, so interactions with resident species contribute less to colonization success. Dispersal ensures that species associations are maintained as they shift in space, so networks retain similar composition and structure. The crucial role of dispersal reinforces the need to manage habitat connectivity to sustain species and interaction diversity into the future.

  1. Epigenetics in the perioperative period

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lirk, P.; Fiegl, H.; Weber, N. C.; Hollmann, M. W.

    2015-01-01

    The perioperative period is characterized by profound changes in the body's homoeostatic processes. This review seeks to address whether epigenetic mechanisms may influence an individual's reaction to surgery and anaesthesia. Evidence from animal and human studies suggests that epigenetic mechanisms

  2. Epigenetics in Prostate Cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Costantine Albany

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Prostate cancer (PC is the most commonly diagnosed nonskin malignancy and the second most common cause of cancer death among men in the United States. Epigenetics is the study of heritable changes in gene expression caused by mechanisms other than changes in the underlying DNA sequences. Two common epigenetic mechanisms, DNA methylation and histone modification, have demonstrated critical roles in prostate cancer growth and metastasis. DNA hypermethylation of cytosine-guanine (CpG rich sequence islands within gene promoter regions is widespread during neoplastic transformation of prostate cells, suggesting that treatment-induced restoration of a “normal” epigenome could be clinically beneficial. Histone modification leads to altered tumor gene function by changing chromosome structure and the level of gene transcription. The reversibility of epigenetic aberrations and restoration of tumor suppression gene function have made them attractive targets for prostate cancer treatment with modulators that demethylate DNA and inhibit histone deacetylases.

  3. Epigenetic codes programming class switch recombination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bharat eVaidyanathan

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Class switch recombination imparts B cells with a fitness-associated adaptive advantage during a humoral immune response by using a precision-tailored DNA excision and ligation process to swap the default constant region gene of the antibody with a new one that has unique effector functions. This secondary diversification of the antibody repertoire is a hallmark of the adaptability of B cells when confronted with environmental and pathogenic challenges. Given that the nucleotide sequence of genes during class switching remains unchanged (genetic constraints, it is logical and necessary therefore, to integrate the adaptability of B cells to an epigenetic state, which is dynamic and can be heritably modulated before, after or even during an antibody-dependent immune response. Epigenetic regulation encompasses heritable changes that affect function (phenotype without altering the sequence information embedded in a gene, and include histone, DNA and RNA modifications. Here, we review current literature on how B cells use an epigenetic code language as a means to ensure antibody plasticity in light of pathogenic insults.

  4. Epigenetics in plant tissue culture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smulders, M.J.M.; Klerk, de G.J.M.

    2011-01-01

    Plants produced vegetatively in tissue culture may differ from the plants from which they have been derived. Two major classes of off-types occur: genetic ones and epigenetic ones. This review is about epigenetic aberrations. We discuss recent studies that have uncovered epigenetic modifications at

  5. Epigenetic inheritance, prions and evolution

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Such transgenerational epigenetic inheritance (TEI) raises obvious questions about a possible evolutionary role for epigenetic 'Lamarckian' mechanisms in evolution, particularly when epigenetic modifications are induced by environmental cues. In this review I attempt a brief overview of the periodically reviewed and ...

  6. Adaptation

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    . Dar es Salaam. Durban. Bloemfontein. Antananarivo. Cape Town. Ifrane ... program strategy. A number of CCAA-supported projects have relevance to other important adaptation-related themes such as disaster preparedness and climate.

  7. Epigenetic Risk Factors in PTSD and Depression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian Joachim Raabe

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Epidemiological and clinical studies have shown that children exposed to adverse experiences are at increased risk for the development of depression, anxiety disorders and PTSD. A history of child abuse and maltreatment increases the likelihood of being subsequently exposed to traumatic events or of developing PTSD as an adult. The brain is highly plastic during early life and encodes acquired information into lasting memories that normally subserve adaptation. Translational studies in rodents showed that enduring sensitization of neuronal and neuroendocrine circuits in response to early life adversity are likely risk factors of life time vulnerability to stress. Hereby, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA axis integrates cognitive, behavioural and emotional responses to early-life stress and can be epigenetically programmed during sensitive windows of development. Epigenetic mechanisms, comprising reciprocal regulation of chromatin structure and DNA methylation, are important to establish and maintain sustained, yet potentially reversible, changes in gene transcription. The relevance of these findings for the development of PTSD requires further studies in humans where experience-dependent epigenetic programming can additionally depend on genetic variation in the underlying substrates which may protect from or advance disease development. Overall, identification of early-life stress associated epigenetic risk markers informing on previous stress history can help to advance early diagnosis, personalized prevention and timely therapeutic interventions, thus reducing long-term social and health costs.

  8. The evolution of mitochondrial genomes in modern frogs (Neobatrachia): nonadaptive evolution of mitochondrial genome reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Yun; Zheng, Yuchi; Miura, Ikuo; Wong, Pamela B Y; Murphy, Robert W; Zeng, Xiaomao

    2014-08-20

    Although mitochondrial (mt) gene order is highly conserved among vertebrates, widespread gene rearrangements occur in anurans, especially in neobatrachians. Protein coding genes in the mitogenome experience adaptive or purifying selection, yet the role that selection plays on genomic reorganization remains unclear. We sequence the mitogenomes of three species of Glandirana and hot spots of gene rearrangements of 20 frog species to investigate the diversity of mitogenomic reorganization in the Neobatrachia. By combing these data with other mitogenomes in GenBank, we evaluate if selective pressures or functional constraints act on mitogenomic reorganization in the Neobatrachia. We also look for correlations between tRNA positions and codon usage. Gene organization in Glandirana was typical of neobatrachian mitogenomes except for the presence of pseudogene trnS (AGY). Surveyed ranids largely exhibited gene arrangements typical of neobatrachian mtDNA although some gene rearrangements occurred. The correlation between codon usage and tRNA positions in neobatrachians was weak, and did not increase after identifying recurrent rearrangements as revealed by basal neobatrachians. Codon usage and tRNA positions were not significantly correlated when considering tRNA gene duplications or losses. Change in number of tRNA gene copies, which was driven by genomic reorganization, did not influence codon usage bias. Nucleotide substitution rates and dN/dS ratios were higher in neobatrachian mitogenomes than in archaeobatrachians, but the rates of mitogenomic reorganization and mt nucleotide diversity were not significantly correlated. No evidence suggests that adaptive selection drove the reorganization of neobatrachian mitogenomes. In contrast, protein-coding genes that function in metabolism showed evidence for purifying selection, and some functional constraints appear to act on the organization of rRNA and tRNA genes. As important nonadaptive forces, genetic drift and mutation

  9. 12 CFR 575.6 - Contents of Reorganization Plans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 12 Banks and Banking 5 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Contents of Reorganization Plans. 575.6 Section... COMPANIES § 575.6 Contents of Reorganization Plans. Each Reorganization Plan shall contain a complete description of all significant terms of the proposed reorganization, shall attach and incorporate any Stock...

  10. 17 CFR 250.63 - Approval of reorganization fees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 17 Commodity and Securities Exchanges 3 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Approval of reorganization... Reorganizations § 250.63 Approval of reorganization fees. All fees, expenses and remuneration, whether interim or final, to whomsoever paid for services rendered or to be rendered in connection with any reorganization...

  11. 20 CFR 627.471 - Reorganization plan appeals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 20 Employees' Benefits 3 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Reorganization plan appeals. 627.471 Section... Reorganization plan appeals. (a) A reorganization plan imposed by the Governor, as provided for at §§ 627.470(c... Secretary. (3) The appealing party shall explain why it believes the decision to impose the reorganization...

  12. Epigenetic Mediation of Endocrine and Immune Response in an Animal Model of Gulf War Illness

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-10-01

    epidemiological and animal experimental data that indicate the risk of developing complex diseases is influenced by persistent epigenetic adaptations...1 AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-14-1-0550 TITLE: Epigenetic Mediation of Endocrine and Immune Response in an Animal Model of Gulf War Illness...Sept 2015-29 Sep 2016 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Epigenetic Mediation of Endocrine and Immune Response in an Animal Model of Gulf War

  13. The epigenetics of obesity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maternal nutrition at the time of conception and during pregnancy is considered a factor for individual differences in having obesity. The mechanisms underlying this association are likely partially epigenetic in nature, but pinning down the exact nature, location, and timing of these changes remain...

  14. Epigenetics and Colorectal Cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lao, Victoria Valinluck; Grady, William M.

    2012-01-01

    Colorectal cancer is a leading cause of cancer deaths in the world. It results from an accumulation of genetic and epigenetic changes in colon epithelial cells that transforms them into adenocarcinomas. There have been major advances in our understanding of cancer epigenetics over the last decade, particularly regarding aberrant DNA methylation. Assessment of the colon cancer epigenome has revealed that virtually all colorectal cancers have aberrantly methylated genes and the average colorectal cancer methylome has hundreds to thousands of abnormally methylated genes. As with gene mutations in the cancer genome, a subset of these methylated genes, called driver genes, is presumed to play a functional role in colorectal cancer. The assessment of methylated genes in colorectal cancers has also revealed a unique molecular subgroup of colorectal cancers called CpG Island Methylator Phenotype (CIMP) cancers; these tumors have a particularly high frequency of methylated genes. The advances in our understanding of aberrant methylation in colorectal cancer has led to epigenetic alterations being developed as clinical biomarkers for diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic applications. Progress in the assessment of epigenetic alterations in colorectal cancer and their clinical applications has shown that these alterations will be commonly used in the near future as molecular markers to direct the prevention and treatment of colorectal cancer. PMID:22009203

  15. Evolution, epigenetics and cooperation

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2016-08-26

    Aug 26, 2016 ... Keywords. Cooperation; epigenetics; evolution; levels of selection ... The domain part of the email address of all email addresses used by the office of Indian Academy of Sciences, including those of the staff, the journals, various programmes, and Current Science, has changed from 'ias.ernet.in' (or ...

  16. Epigenetic changes in myelofibrosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Helene Myrtue; Andersen, Christen Lykkegaard; Westman, Maj

    2017-01-01

    , in 'inflammatory disease' in MF mononuclear cells, and in 'immunological diseases' in MF granulocytes. Only few differentially methylated CpG sites were common among the three cell populations. Mutations in the epigenetic regulators ASXL1 (47%) and TET2 (20%) were not associated with a specific DNA methylation...

  17. Adapt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bargatze, L. F.

    2015-12-01

    Active Data Archive Product Tracking (ADAPT) is a collection of software routines that permits one to generate XML metadata files to describe and register data products in support of the NASA Heliophysics Virtual Observatory VxO effort. ADAPT is also a philosophy. The ADAPT concept is to use any and all available metadata associated with scientific data to produce XML metadata descriptions in a consistent, uniform, and organized fashion to provide blanket access to the full complement of data stored on a targeted data server. In this poster, we present an application of ADAPT to describe all of the data products that are stored by using the Common Data File (CDF) format served out by the CDAWEB and SPDF data servers hosted at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. These data servers are the primary repositories for NASA Heliophysics data. For this purpose, the ADAPT routines have been used to generate data resource descriptions by using an XML schema named Space Physics Archive, Search, and Extract (SPASE). SPASE is the designated standard for documenting Heliophysics data products, as adopted by the Heliophysics Data and Model Consortium. The set of SPASE XML resource descriptions produced by ADAPT includes high-level descriptions of numerical data products, display data products, or catalogs and also includes low-level "Granule" descriptions. A SPASE Granule is effectively a universal access metadata resource; a Granule associates an individual data file (e.g. a CDF file) with a "parent" high-level data resource description, assigns a resource identifier to the file, and lists the corresponding assess URL(s). The CDAWEB and SPDF file systems were queried to provide the input required by the ADAPT software to create an initial set of SPASE metadata resource descriptions. Then, the CDAWEB and SPDF data repositories were queried subsequently on a nightly basis and the CDF file lists were checked for any changes such as the occurrence of new, modified, or deleted

  18. Epigenetic treatments for cognitive impairments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, Jeremy J; Sweatt, J David

    2012-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms integrate signals from diverse intracellular transduction cascades and in turn regulate genetic readout. Accumulating evidence has revealed that these mechanisms are critical components of ongoing physiology and function in the adult nervous system, and are essential for many cognitive processes, including learning and memory. Moreover, a number of psychiatric disorders and syndromes that involve cognitive impairments are associated with altered epigenetic function. In this review, we will examine how epigenetic mechanisms contribute to cognition, consider how changes in these mechanisms may lead to cognitive impairments in a range of disorders and discuss the potential utility of therapeutic treatments that target epigenetic machinery. Finally, we will comment on a number of caveats associated with interpreting epigenetic changes and using epigenetic treatments, and suggest future directions for research in this area that will expand our understanding of the epigenetic changes underlying cognitive disorders.

  19. Adaptation

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Nairobi, Kenya. 28 Adapting Fishing Policy to Climate Change with the Aid of Scientific and Endogenous Knowledge. Cap Verde, Gambia,. Guinea, Guinea Bissau,. Mauritania and Senegal. Environment and Development in the Third World. (ENDA-TM). Dakar, Senegal. 29 Integrating Indigenous Knowledge in Climate Risk ...

  20. Epigenetics and cerebral organoids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Forsberg, Sheena Louise; Ilieva, Mirolyuba; Maria Michel, Tanja

    2018-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) affect 1 in 68 children in the US according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It is characterized by impairments in social interactions and communication, restrictive and repetitive patterns of behaviors, and interests. Owing to disease...... also play a role. Some studies indicate a set of candidate genes with different DNA methylation profiles in ASD compared to healthy individuals. Thus epigenetic alterations could help bridging the gene-environment gap in deciphering the underlying neurobiology of autism. However, epigenome...... of the art concerning knowledge on epigenetic changes in autism and how new, cutting edge expertise based on three-dimensional (3D) stem cell technology models (brain organoids) can contribute in elucidating the multiple aspects of disease mechanisms....

  1. Epigenetic mechanisms in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akbarian, Schahram

    2014-09-01

    Schizophrenia is a major psychiatric disorder that lacks a unifying neuropathology, while currently available pharmacological treatments provide only limited benefits to many patients. This review will discuss how the field of neuroepigenetics could contribute to advancements of the existing knowledge on the neurobiology and treatment of psychosis. Genome-scale mapping of DMA methylation, histone modifications and variants, and chromosomal loopings for promoter-enhancer interactions and other epigenetic determinants of genome organization and function are likely to provide important clues about mechanisms contributing to dysregulated expression of synaptic and metabolic genes in schizophrenia brain, including the potential links to the underlying genetic risk architecture and environmental exposures. In addition, studies in animal models are providing a rapidly increasing list of chromatin-regulatory mechanisms with significant effects on cognition and complex behaviors, thereby pointing to the therapeutic potential of epigenetic drug targets in the nervous system.

  2. Epigenetics and Evolution: Transposons and the Stochastic Epigenetic Modification Model

    OpenAIRE

    Sergio Branciamore; Andrei S. Rodin; Grigoriy Gogoshin; Arthur D. Riggs

    2015-01-01

    In addition to genetic variation, epigenetic variation and transposons can greatly affect the evolutionary fitnesses landscape and gene expression. Previously we proposed a mathematical treatment of a general epigenetic variation model that we called Stochastic Epigenetic Modification (SEM) model. In this study we follow up with a special case, the Transposon Silencing Model (TSM), with, once again, emphasis on quantitative treatment. We have investigated the evolutionary effects of epigeneti...

  3. Epigenetics and Autism

    OpenAIRE

    Mbadiwe, Tafari; Millis, Richard M.

    2013-01-01

    This review identifies mechanisms for altering DNA-histone interactions of cell chromatin to upregulate or downregulate gene expression that could serve as epigenetic targets for therapeutic interventions in autism. DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) can phosphorylate histone H3 at T6. Aided by protein kinase C ? 1, the DNMT lysine-specific demethylase-1 prevents demethylation of H3 at K4. During androgen-receptor-(AR-) dependent gene activation, this sequence may produce AR-dependent gene overac...

  4. Epigenetic mechanisms in leukemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaidi, Sayyed K; Trombly, Daniel J; Dowdy, Christopher R; Lian, Jane B; Stein, Janet L; van Wijnen, Andre J; Stein, Gary S

    2012-09-01

    Focal organization of regulatory machinery within the interphase nucleus is linked to biological responsiveness and perturbed in cancer. Lineage determinant Runx proteins organize and assemble multi-protein complexes at sites of transcription within the nucleus and regulate both RNA polymerase II- and I-mediated gene expression. In addition, Runx proteins epigenetically control lineage determining transcriptional programs including: 1) architectural organization of macromolecular complexes in interphase, 2) regulation of gene expression through bookmarking during mitosis, and 3) microRNA-mediated translational control in the interphase nucleus. These mechanisms are compromised with the onset and progression of cancer. For example, the oncogenic AML1-ETO protein, which results from a chromosomal translocation between chromosomes 8 and 21, is expressed in nearly 25% of all acute myelogenous leukemias, disrupts Runx1 subnuclear localization during interphase and compromises transcriptional regulation. Epigenetically, the leukemic protein redirects the Runx1 DNA binding domain to leukemia-specific nuclear microenvironments, modifies regulatory protein accessibility to Runx1 target genes by imprinting repressive chromatin marks, and deregulates the microRNA (miR) profile of diseased myeloid cells. Consequently, the entire Runx1-dependent transcriptional program of myeloid cells is deregulated leading to onset and progression of acute myeloid leukemia and maintenance of leukemic phenotype. We discuss the potential of modified epigenetic landscape of leukemic cells as a viable therapeutic target. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  5. Epigenetics of autism spectrum disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schanen, N Carolyn

    2006-10-15

    The autism spectrum disorders (ASD) comprise a complex group of behaviorally related disorders that are primarily genetic in origin. Involvement of epigenetic regulatory mechanisms in the pathogenesis of ASD has been suggested by the occurrence of ASD in patients with disorders arising from epigenetic mutations (fragile X syndrome) or that involve key epigenetic regulatory factors (Rett syndrome). Moreover, the most common recurrent cytogenetic abnormalities in ASD involve maternally derived duplications of the imprinted domain on chromosome 15q11-13. Thus, parent of origin effects on sharing and linkage to imprinted regions on chromosomes 15q and 7q suggest that these regions warrant specific examination from an epigenetic perspective, particularly because epigenetic modifications do not change the primary genomic sequence, allowing risk epialleles to evade detection using standard screening strategies. This review examines the potential role of epigenetic factors in the etiology of ASD.

  6. Epigenetics of Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siu, Michelle T; Weksberg, Rosanna

    2017-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD), one of the most common childhood neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs), is diagnosed in 1 of every 68 children. ASD is incredibly heterogeneous both clinically and aetiologically. The etiopathogenesis of ASD is known to be complex, including genetic, environmental and epigenetic factors. Normal epigenetic marks modifiable by both genetics and environmental exposures can result in epigenetic alterations that disrupt the regulation of gene expression, negatively impacting biological pathways important for brain development. In this chapter we aim to summarize some of the important literature that supports a role for epigenetics in the underlying molecular mechanism of ASD. We provide evidence from work in genetics, from environmental exposures and finally from more recent studies aimed at directly determining ASD-specific epigenetic patterns, focusing mainly on DNA methylation (DNAm). Finally, we briefly discuss some of the implications of current research on potential epigenetic targets for therapeutics and novel avenues for future work.

  7. Epigenetic microRNA Regulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wiklund, Erik Digman

    2011-01-01

    and confirming transcriptional start sites can be difficult. Epigenetics, gene regulatory and DNA modification mechanisms not involving a change to the primary sequence, have been implied in the regulation of a number of miRNA loci. Both epigenetic and miRNA signatures are broadly altered in cancer......, and are thought to play essential roles in cancer etiology and progression. Here, we aimed to identify epigenetic miRNA deregulation in bladder and oral carcinoma, and to develop a robust approach to epigenetic miRNA prediction and detection. In addition, non-canonical epigenetic functions directed by a nuclear...... miRNA were investigated. In summary, we report that the miR-200 family and miR-205 are coordinately epigenetically regulated in a variety of cell lines, tumors and normal tissues. MiR-200c expression is correlated with bladder cancer disease progression, and miR-375 levels in oral rinse can...

  8. Co-Plaintigff in Judicial Reorganization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liliane Gonçalves Matos

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study it was to analyze the possibility of the economic group file a single request for judicial reorganization. Concerning the methodology, the study is a descriptive - analytic research, analyzing the legal doctrines and jurisprudence about the subject. It has been shown that the reorganization of groups, instead of separated companies may result benefits, as a company of the group can help to recover the others that are facing difficulties, but there is the possibility to create a negative incentive for the development of global business activity. It was concluded that the active joinder in bankruptcy is feasible, but it would be more prudent for each group company present its own reorganization  plan.

  9. Epigenetics: What it is about?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saade E.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetics has captured the attention of scientists in the past decades, yet its scope has been continuously changing. In this paper, we give an overview on how and why its definition has evolved and suggest several clarification on the concepts used in this field. Waddington coined the term in 1942 to describe genes interaction with each other and with their environment and insisted on dissociating these events from development. Then, Holliday and others argued that epigenetic phenomena are characterized by their heritability. However, differentiated cells can maintain their phenotypes for decades without undergoing division, which points out the limitation of the «heritability» criterion for a particular phenomenon to qualify as epigenetic. «Epigenetic stability» encompasses traits preservation in both dividing and non dividing cells. Likewise, the use of the term «epigenetic regulation» has been misleading as it overlaps with «regulation of gene expression», whereas «epigenetic information» clearly distinguishes epigenetic from genetic phenomena. Consequently, how could epigenetic information be transmitted and perpetuated? The term «epigenetic templating» has been proposed to refer to a general mechanism of perpetuation of epigenetic information that is based on the preferential activity of enzymes that deposit a particular epigenetic mark on macromolecular complexes already containing the same mark. Another issue that we address is the role of epigenetic information. Not only it is important in allowing alternative interpretations of genetic information, but it appears to be important in protecting the genome, as can be illustrated by bacterial endonucleases that targets non methylated DNA – i. e. foreign DNA – and not the endogenous methylated DNA.

  10. Shaping epigenetic memory via genomic bookmarking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michieletto, Davide; Chiang, Michael; Colì, Davide; Papantonis, Argyris; Orlandini, Enzo; Cook, Peter R; Marenduzzo, Davide

    2018-01-09

    Reconciling the stability of epigenetic patterns with the rapid turnover of histone modifications and their adaptability to external stimuli is an outstanding challenge. Here, we propose a new biophysical mechanism that can establish and maintain robust yet plastic epigenetic domains via genomic bookmarking (GBM). We model chromatin as a recolourable polymer whose segments bear non-permanent histone marks (or colours) which can be modified by 'writer' proteins. The three-dimensional chromatin organisation is mediated by protein bridges, or 'readers', such as Polycomb Repressive Complexes and Transcription Factors. The coupling between readers and writers drives spreading of biochemical marks and sustains the memory of local chromatin states across replication and mitosis. In contrast, GBM-targeted perturbations destabilise the epigenetic patterns. Strikingly, we demonstrate that GBM alone can explain the full distribution of Polycomb marks in a whole Drosophila chromosome. We finally suggest that our model provides a starting point for an understanding of the biophysics of cellular differentiation and reprogramming. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  11. Epigenetics primer: why the clinician should care about epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, Julio D

    2013-12-01

    Epigenetics describes heritable alterations of gene expression that do not involve DNA sequence variation and are changeable throughout an organism's lifetime. Not only can epigenetic status influence drug response, but it can also be modulated by drugs. In this review, the three major epigenetic mechanisms are described: covalent DNA modification, histone protein modification, and regulation by noncoding RNA. Further, this review describes how drug therapy can influence, and be influenced by, these mechanisms. Drugs with epigenetic mechanisms are already in use, with many more likely to be approved within the next few years. As the understanding of epigenetic processes improves, so will the ability to use these data in the clinic to improve patient care. © 2013 Pharmacotherapy Publications, Inc.

  12. Common non-epigenetic drugs as epigenetic modulators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lötsch, Jörn; Schneider, Gisbert; Reker, Daniel; Parnham, Michael J; Schneider, Petra; Geisslinger, Gerd; Doehring, Alexandra

    2013-12-01

    Epigenetic effects are exerted by a variety of factors and evidence increases that common drugs such as opioids, cannabinoids, valproic acid, or cytostatics may induce alterations in DNA methylation patterns or histone conformations. These effects occur via chemical structural interactions with epigenetic enzymes, through interactions with DNA repair mechanisms. Computational predictions indicate that one-twentieth of all drugs might potentially interact with human histone deacetylase, which was prospectively experimentally verified for the compound with the highest predicted interaction probability. These epigenetic effects add to wanted and unwanted drug effects, contributing to mechanisms of drug resistance or disease-related and unrelated phenotypes. Because epigenetic changes might be transmitted to offspring, the need for reliable and cost-effective epigenetic screening tools becomes acute. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Reorganizing Complex Network to Improve Large-Scale Multiagent Teamwork

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Xu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Large-scale multiagent teamwork has been popular in various domains. Similar to human society infrastructure, agents only coordinate with some of the others, with a peer-to-peer complex network structure. Their organization has been proven as a key factor to influence their performance. To expedite team performance, we have analyzed that there are three key factors. First, complex network effects may be able to promote team performance. Second, coordination interactions coming from their sources are always trying to be routed to capable agents. Although they could be transferred across the network via different paths, their sources and sinks depend on the intrinsic nature of the team which is irrelevant to the network connections. In addition, the agents involved in the same plan often form a subteam and communicate with each other more frequently. Therefore, if the interactions between agents can be statistically recorded, we are able to set up an integrated network adjustment algorithm by combining the three key factors. Based on our abstracted teamwork simulations and the coordination statistics, we implemented the adaptive reorganization algorithm. The experimental results briefly support our design that the reorganized network is more capable of coordinating heterogeneous agents.

  14. Epigenetics, Behaviour, and Health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Szyf Moshe

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available The long-term effects of behaviour and environmental exposures, particularly during childhood, on health outcomes are well documented. Particularly thought provoking is the notion that exposures to different social environments have a long-lasting impact on human physical health. However, the mechanisms mediating the effects of the environment are still unclear. In the last decade, the main focus of attention was the genome, and interindividual genetic polymorphisms were sought after as the principal basis for susceptibility to disease. However, it is becoming clear that recent dramatic increases in the incidence of certain human pathologies, such as asthma and type 2 diabetes, cannot be explained just on the basis of a genetic drift. It is therefore extremely important to unravel the molecular links between the "environmental" exposure, which is believed to be behind this emerging incidence in certain human pathologies, and the disease's molecular mechanisms. Although it is clear that most human pathologies involve long-term changes in gene function, these might be caused by mechanisms other than changes in the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA sequence. The genome is programmed by the epigenome, which is composed of chromatin and a covalent modification of DNA by methylation. It is postulated here that "epigenetic" mechanisms mediate the effects of behavioural and environmental exposures early in life, as well as lifelong environmental exposures and the susceptibility to disease later in life. In contrast to genetic sequence differences, epigenetic aberrations are potentially reversible, raising the hope for interventions that will be able to reverse deleterious epigenetic programming.

  15. Epigenetics of kidney disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wanner, Nicola; Bechtel-Walz, Wibke

    2017-07-01

    DNA methylation and histone modifications determine renal programming and the development and progression of renal disease. The identification of the way in which the renal cell epigenome is altered by environmental modifiers driving the onset and progression of renal diseases has extended our understanding of the pathophysiology of kidney disease progression. In this review, we focus on current knowledge concerning the implications of epigenetic modifications during renal disease from early development to chronic kidney disease progression including renal fibrosis, diabetic nephropathy and the translational potential of identifying new biomarkers and treatments for the prevention and therapy of chronic kidney disease and end-stage kidney disease.

  16. Nucleosome Positioning and Epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwab, David; Bruinsma, Robijn

    2008-03-01

    The role of chromatin structure in gene regulation has recently taken center stage in the field of epigenetics, phenomena that change the phenotype without changing the DNA sequence. Recent work has also shown that nucleosomes, a complex of DNA wrapped around a histone octamer, experience a sequence dependent energy landscape due to the variation in DNA bend stiffness with sequence composition. In this talk, we consider the role nucleosome positioning might play in the formation of heterochromatin, a compact form of DNA generically responsible for gene silencing. In particular, we discuss how different patterns of nucleosome positions, periodic or random, could either facilitate or suppress heterochromatin stability and formation.

  17. Epigenetic inheritance, prions and evolution

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The field of epigenetics has grown explosively in the past two decades or so. As currently defined, epigenetics deals with heritable, metastable and usually reversible changes that do not involve alterations in DNA sequence, but alter the way that information encoded inDNAis utilized.The bulk of current research in ...

  18. Is Glioblastoma an Epigenetic Malignancy?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maleszewska, Marta; Kaminska, Bozena, E-mail: B.Kaminska@nencki.gov.pl [Laboratory of Molecular Neurobiology, Neurobiology Center, The Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology, 3 Pasteur Str., Warsaw 02-093 (Poland)

    2013-09-03

    Epigenetic modifications control gene expression by regulating the access of nuclear proteins to their target DNA and have been implicated in both normal cell differentiation and oncogenic transformation. Epigenetic abnormalities can occur both as a cause and as a consequence of cancer. Oncogenic transformation can deeply alter the epigenetic information enclosed in the pattern of DNA methylation or histone modifications. In addition, in some cancers epigenetic dysfunctions can drive oncogenic transformation. Growing evidence emphasizes the interplay between metabolic disturbances, epigenomic changes and cancer, i.e., mutations in the metabolic enzymes SDH, FH, and IDH may contribute to cancer development. Epigenetic-based mechanisms are reversible and the possibility of “resetting” the abnormal cancer epigenome by applying pharmacological or genetic strategies is an attractive, novel approach. Gliomas are incurable with all current therapeutic approaches and new strategies are urgently needed. Increasing evidence suggests the role of epigenetic events in development and/or progression of gliomas. In this review, we summarize current data on the occurrence and significance of mutations in the epigenetic and metabolic enzymes in pathobiology of gliomas. We discuss emerging therapies targeting specific epigenetic modifications or chromatin modifying enzymes either alone or in combination with other treatment regimens.

  19. Epigenetic regulation of human retinoblastoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Usha; Malik, Manzoor Ahmad; Goswami, Sandeep; Shukla, Swati; Kaur, Jasbir

    2016-11-01

    Retinoblastoma is a rare type of eye cancer of the retina that commonly occurs in early childhood and mostly affects the children before the age of 5. It occurs due to the mutations in the retinoblastoma gene (RB1) which inactivates both alleles of the RB1. RB1 was first identified as a tumor suppressor gene, which regulates cell cycle components and associated with retinoblastoma. Previously, genetic alteration was known as the major cause of its occurrence, but later, it is revealed that besides genetic changes, epigenetic changes also play a significant role in the disease. Initiation and progression of retinoblastoma could be due to independent or combined genetic and epigenetic events. Remarkable work has been done in understanding retinoblastoma pathogenesis in terms of genetic alterations, but not much in the context of epigenetic modification. Epigenetic modifications that silence tumor suppressor genes and activate oncogenes include DNA methylation, chromatin remodeling, histone modification and noncoding RNA-mediated gene silencing. Epigenetic changes can lead to altered gene function and transform normal cell into tumor cells. This review focuses on important epigenetic alteration which occurs in retinoblastoma and its current state of knowledge. The critical role of epigenetic regulation in retinoblastoma is now an emerging area, and better understanding of epigenetic changes in retinoblastoma will open the door for future therapy and diagnosis.

  20. Evolutionary significance of epigenetic variation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Richards, C.L.; Verhoeven, K.J.F.; Bossdorf, O.; Wendel, J.F.; Greilhuber, J.; Dolezel, J.; Leitch, I.J.

    2012-01-01

    Several chapters in this volume demonstrate how epigenetic work at the molecular level over the last few decades has revolutionized our understanding of genome function and developmental biology. However, epigenetic processes not only further our understanding of variation and regulation at the

  1. Is Glioblastoma an Epigenetic Malignancy?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maleszewska, Marta; Kaminska, Bozena

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic modifications control gene expression by regulating the access of nuclear proteins to their target DNA and have been implicated in both normal cell differentiation and oncogenic transformation. Epigenetic abnormalities can occur both as a cause and as a consequence of cancer. Oncogenic transformation can deeply alter the epigenetic information enclosed in the pattern of DNA methylation or histone modifications. In addition, in some cancers epigenetic dysfunctions can drive oncogenic transformation. Growing evidence emphasizes the interplay between metabolic disturbances, epigenomic changes and cancer, i.e., mutations in the metabolic enzymes SDH, FH, and IDH may contribute to cancer development. Epigenetic-based mechanisms are reversible and the possibility of “resetting” the abnormal cancer epigenome by applying pharmacological or genetic strategies is an attractive, novel approach. Gliomas are incurable with all current therapeutic approaches and new strategies are urgently needed. Increasing evidence suggests the role of epigenetic events in development and/or progression of gliomas. In this review, we summarize current data on the occurrence and significance of mutations in the epigenetic and metabolic enzymes in pathobiology of gliomas. We discuss emerging therapies targeting specific epigenetic modifications or chromatin modifying enzymes either alone or in combination with other treatment regimens

  2. Epigenetic Mechanisms Underlie Genome Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamm, Ehud

    2013-01-01

    Technological and methodological advances, in particular next-generation sequencing and chromatin profiling, has led to a deluge of data on epigenetic mechanisms and processes. Epigenetic regulation in the brain is no exception. In this commentary, Ehud Lamm writes that extending existing frameworks for thinking about psychological development to…

  3. The Factors and Transversal Reorganizations Principles of Romanian Textile Industry Enterprises using Activity-Based Costing Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sorinel Capusneanu

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available This article describes the factors and the principles of transversal reorganization of the enterprises from the Romanian textile industry by adapting the Activity-Based Costing method (ABC to its specific. There are presented and analyzed the real possibilities of reorganization of the enterprises in Romania by elaboration of methodological phases that will be covered until the implementation of their transversal organization. Are we ready to adapt the Activity-Based Costing method to the specific of the Romanian textile industry and not only? Here is the question whose response we will find in this article.

  4. Stress, Epigenetics, and Alcoholism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moonat, Sachin; Pandey, Subhash C.

    2012-01-01

    Acute and chronic stressors have been associated with alterations in mood and increased anxiety that may eventually result in the development of stress-related psychiatric disorders. Stress and associated disorders, including anxiety, are key factors in the development of alcoholism because alcohol consumption can temporarily reduce the drinker’s dysphoria. One molecule that may help mediate the relationship between stress and alcohol consumption is brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a protein that regulates the structure and function of the sites where two nerve cells interact and exchange nerve signals (i.e., synapses) and which is involved in numerous physiological processes. Aberrant regulation of BDNF signaling and alterations in synapse activity (i.e., synaptic plasticity) have been associated with the pathophysiology of stress-related disorders and alcoholism. Mechanisms that contribute to the regulation of genetic information without modification of the DNA sequence (i.e., epigenetic mechanisms) may play a role in the complex control of BDNF signaling and synaptic plasticity—for example, by modifying the structure of the DNA–protein complexes (i.e., chromatin) that make up the chromosomes and thereby modulating the expression of certain genes. Studies regarding the epigenetic control of BDNF signaling and synaptic plasticity provide a promising direction to understand the mechanisms mediating the interaction between stress and alcoholism. PMID:23584115

  5. Epigenetics and autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mbadiwe, Tafari; Millis, Richard M

    2013-01-01

    This review identifies mechanisms for altering DNA-histone interactions of cell chromatin to upregulate or downregulate gene expression that could serve as epigenetic targets for therapeutic interventions in autism. DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) can phosphorylate histone H3 at T6. Aided by protein kinase C β 1, the DNMT lysine-specific demethylase-1 prevents demethylation of H3 at K4. During androgen-receptor-(AR-) dependent gene activation, this sequence may produce AR-dependent gene overactivation which may partly explain the male predominance of autism. AR-dependent gene overactivation in conjunction with a DNMT mechanism for methylating oxytocin receptors could produce high arousal inputs to the amygdala resulting in aberrant socialization, a prime characteristic of autism. Dysregulation of histone methyltransferases and histone deacetylases (HDACs) associated with low activity of methyl CpG binding protein-2 at cytosine-guanine sites in genes may reduce the capacity for condensing chromatin and silencing genes in frontal cortex, a site characterized by decreased cortical interconnectivity in autistic subjects. HDAC1 inhibition can overactivate mRNA transcription, a putative mechanism for the increased number of cerebral cortical columns and local frontal cortex hyperactivity in autistic individuals. These epigenetic mechanisms underlying male predominance, aberrant social interaction, and low functioning frontal cortex may be novel targets for autism prevention and treatment strategies.

  6. Epigenetics and Autism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tafari Mbadiwe

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This review identifies mechanisms for altering DNA-histone interactions of cell chromatin to upregulate or downregulate gene expression that could serve as epigenetic targets for therapeutic interventions in autism. DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs can phosphorylate histone H3 at T6. Aided by protein kinase Cβ1, the DNMT lysine-specific demethylase-1 prevents demethylation of H3 at K4. During androgen-receptor-(AR- dependent gene activation, this sequence may produce AR-dependent gene overactivation which may partly explain the male predominance of autism. AR-dependent gene overactivation in conjunction with a DNMT mechanism for methylating oxytocin receptors could produce high arousal inputs to the amygdala resulting in aberrant socialization, a prime characteristic of autism. Dysregulation of histone methyltransferases and histone deacetylases (HDACs associated with low activity of methyl CpG binding protein-2 at cytosine-guanine sites in genes may reduce the capacity for condensing chromatin and silencing genes in frontal cortex, a site characterized by decreased cortical interconnectivity in autistic subjects. HDAC1 inhibition can overactivate mRNA transcription, a putative mechanism for the increased number of cerebral cortical columns and local frontal cortex hyperactivity in autistic individuals. These epigenetic mechanisms underlying male predominance, aberrant social interaction, and low functioning frontal cortex may be novel targets for autism prevention and treatment strategies.

  7. 75 FR 31320 - Agency Reorganization and Delegations of Authority; Correction

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-06-03

    ... FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION 46 CFR Part 501 [Docket No. 10-04] RIN 3072-AC37 Agency Reorganization... May 26, 2010, the Final Rule for the reorganization of the Commission. The reference to the Commission... Final Rule in the Federal Register on May 26, 2010 (75 FR 29451) concerning the reorganization of the...

  8. Comparative Heterochromatin Profiling Reveals Conserved and Unique Epigenome Signatures Linked to Adaptation and Development of Malaria Parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fraschka, Sabine A; Filarsky, Michael; Hoo, Regina; Niederwieser, Igor; Yam, Xue Yan; Brancucci, Nicolas M B; Mohring, Franziska; Mushunje, Annals T; Huang, Ximei; Christensen, Peter R; Nosten, Francois; Bozdech, Zbynek; Russell, Bruce; Moon, Robert W; Marti, Matthias; Preiser, Peter R; Bártfai, Richárd; Voss, Till S

    2018-03-14

    Heterochromatin-dependent gene silencing is central to the adaptation and survival of Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites, allowing clonally variant gene expression during blood infection in humans. By assessing genome-wide heterochromatin protein 1 (HP1) occupancy, we present a comprehensive analysis of heterochromatin landscapes across different Plasmodium species, strains, and life cycle stages. Common targets of epigenetic silencing include fast-evolving multi-gene families encoding surface antigens and a small set of conserved HP1-associated genes with regulatory potential. Many P. falciparum heterochromatic genes are marked in a strain-specific manner, increasing the parasite's adaptive capacity. Whereas heterochromatin is strictly maintained during mitotic proliferation of asexual blood stage parasites, substantial heterochromatin reorganization occurs in differentiating gametocytes and appears crucial for the activation of key gametocyte-specific genes and adaptation of erythrocyte remodeling machinery. Collectively, these findings provide a catalog of heterochromatic genes and reveal conserved and specialized features of epigenetic control across the genus Plasmodium. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. The political implications of epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robison, Shea K

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetics, which is just beginning to attract public attention and policy discussion, challenges conventional understanding of gene-environment interaction and intergenerational inheritance and perhaps much more besides. Does epigenetics challenge modern political ideologies? I analyzed the narratives of obesity and epigenetics recently published in the more liberal New York Times and the more conservative Wall Street Journal. For the years 2010 through 2014, 50 articles on obesity and 29 articles on epigenetics were identified, and elements in their causal narratives were quantitatively analyzed using a well described narrative policy framework. The narratives on obesity aligned with the two newspapers' reputed ideologies. However, the narratives on epigenetics aligned with neither ideology but freely mixed liberal and conservative elements. This small study may serve as a starting point for broader studies of epigenetics as it comes to affect political ideologies and, in turn, public policies. The narrative mix reported here could yet prove vulnerable to ideological capture, or, more optimistically, could portend the emergence of a "third-way" narrative using epigenetics to question atomistic individualism and allowing for less divisiveness in public-health domains such as obesity.

  10. [Schizophrenia, environment and epigenetics].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Must, Anita; Janka, Zoltan; Horvath, Szatmar

    2011-12-01

    Psychotic, cognitive and affective symptoms defining schizophrenia may, though much less severe, manifest themselves in up to 10 to 20% of the general population. What explains the fact that in certain cases the symptoms require even constant medical supervision, while others are capable of living a normal life within social conventions? Which factors lead to the transition of mild, subclinical manifestations and vulnerability indicators towards the outburst of one of the most severe and depriving mental disorders? Genetic susceptibility is undoubtedly crucial. More recent research findings emphasize the modifying effect of specific environmental factors on gene expression. The gene-environment interplay may induce so-called epigenetic alterations which may manifest themselves over several generations. Future integrative, multi-dimensional and flexible schizophrenia research approaches focusing on the identification of neurobiological and cognitive outcomes are much needed to understand disease vulnerability, susceptibility mechanisms, periods and interactions. Research methods may differ, but our aim is common - establishing more effective diagnostic and therapeutic interventions.

  11. Epigenetic regulation of serotype expression antagonizes transcriptome dynamics in Paramecium tetraurelia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheaib, Miriam; Dehghani Amirabad, Azim; Nordström, Karl J V; Schulz, Marcel H; Simon, Martin

    2015-08-01

    Phenotypic variation of a single genotype is achieved by alterations in gene expression patterns. Regulation of such alterations depends on their time scale, where short-time adaptations differ from permanently established gene expression patterns maintained by epigenetic mechanisms. In the ciliate Paramecium, serotypes were described for an epigenetically controlled gene expression pattern of an individual multigene family. Paradoxically, individual serotypes can be triggered in Paramecium by alternating environments but are then stabilized by epigenetic mechanisms, thus raising the question to which extend their expression follows environmental stimuli. To characterize environmental adaptation in the context of epigenetically controlled serotype expression, we used RNA-seq to characterize transcriptomes of serotype pure cultures. The resulting vegetative transcriptome resource is first analysed for genes involved in the adaptive response to the altered environment. Secondly, we identified groups of genes that do not follow the adaptive response but show co-regulation with the epigenetically controlled serotype system, suggesting that their gene expression pattern becomes manifested by similar mechanisms. In our experimental set-up, serotype expression and the entire group of co-regulated genes were stable among environmental changes and only heat-shock genes altered expression of these gene groups. The data suggest that the maintenance of these gene expression patterns in a lineage represents epigenetically controlled robustness counteracting short-time adaptation processes. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Kazusa DNA Research Institute.

  12. Low Dose Radiation-Induced Genome and Epigenome Instability Symposium and Epigenetic Mechanisms, DNA Repair, and Chromatin Symposium at the EMS 2008 Annual Meeting - October 2008

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morgan, William F; Kovalchuk, Olga; Dolinoy, Dana C; Dubrova, Yuri E; Coleman, Matthew A; Schär, Primo; Pogribny, Igor; Hendzel, Michael

    2010-02-19

    The Low Dose Radiation Symposium thoughtfully addressed ionizing radiation non-mutational but transmissable alterations in surviving cells. Deregulation of epigenetic processes has been strongly implicated in carcinogenesis, and there is increasing realization that a significant fraction of non-targeted and adaptive mechanisms in response to ionizing radiation are likely to be epigenetic in nature. Much remains to be learned about how chromatin and epigenetic regulators affect responses to low doses of radiation, and how low dose radiation impacts other epigenetic processes. The Epigenetic Mechanisms Symposium focused on on epigenetic mechanisms and their interplay with DNA repair and chromatin changes. Addressing the fact that the most well understood mediators of epigenetic regulation are histone modifications and DNA methylation. Low levels of radiation can lead to changes in the methylation status of certain gene promoters and the expression of DNA methyltransferases, However, epigenetic regulation can also involve changes in higher order chromosome structure.

  13. Aging epigenetics: causes and consequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huidobro, Covadonga; Fernandez, Agustin F; Fraga, Mario F

    2013-01-01

    Growth and development of higher organisms are regulated by the orchestrated change of epigenetic marks over time. In addition, there is also an epigenetic variation without any apparent role in development that is thought to be the result of the stochastic accumulation of epigenetic errors. The process depends on genetic and environmental factors and, when it takes place in adult stem cells, it could play an important role in aging, although the underlying molecular mechanisms are still largely unknown. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Changes in Allostatic Load during workplace reorganization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carlsson, Rikke Hinge; Hansen, Åse Marie; Nielsen, Martin Lindhardt

    2017-01-01

    , effort-reward imbalance) and psychological distress (stress symptoms and perceived stress). Methods A major reorganization of non-state public offices was effectuated in Denmark on 1 January 2007. In 2006 and 2008, we collected clinical and questionnaire data from 359 participants, 265 women and 94 men...... and immune systems. We analysed changes in AL from 2006 to 2008. Results AL increased significantly during workplace reorganization in the whole study group but we observed only a tendency of significant increase in AL in the merger group compared with the control group. Moreover, we observed no association...... between the changes in AL and changes in psychosocial work environment and psychological distress. Conclusions This result leaves the conclusion unclear but contributes to the limited research in this area with a longitudinal design and focus on low-risk levels and small changes in AL in healthy people...

  15. Epigenetics and Evolution: Transposons and the Stochastic Epigenetic Modification Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Branciamore

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available In addition to genetic variation, epigenetic variation and transposons can greatly affect the evolutionary fitnesses landscape and gene expression. Previously we proposed a mathematical treatment of a general epigenetic variation model that we called Stochastic Epigenetic Modification (SEM model. In this study we follow up with a special case, the Transposon Silencing Model (TSM, with, once again, emphasis on quantitative treatment. We have investigated the evolutionary effects of epigenetic changes due to transposon (T insertions; in particular, we have considered a typical gene locus A and postulated that (i the expression level of gene A depends on the epigenetic state (active or inactive of a cis- located transposon element T, (ii stochastic variability in the epigenetic silencing of T occurs only in a short window of opportunity during development, (iii the epigenetic state is then stable during further development, and (iv the epigenetic memory is fully reset at each generation. We develop the model using two complementary approaches: a standard analytical population genetics framework (di usion equations and Monte-Carlo simulations. Both approaches led to similar estimates for the probability of fixation and time of fixation of locus TA with initial frequency P in a randomly mating diploid population of effective size Ne. We have ascertained the e ect that ρ, the probability of transposon Modification during the developmental window, has on the population (species. One of our principal conclusions is that as ρ increases, the pattern of fixation of the combined TA locus goes from "neutral" to "dominant" to "over-dominant". We observe that, under realistic values of ρ, epigenetic Modifications can provide an e cient mechanism for more rapid fixation of transposons and cis-located gene alleles. The results obtained suggest that epigenetic silencing, even if strictly transient (being reset at each generation, can still have signi cant

  16. Reorganization of Dentate Gyrus Microcircuits During Epileptogenesis

    OpenAIRE

    Jones, Ryan Thomas

    2014-01-01

    Temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) is a form of acquired epilepsy characterized by recurrent and unprovoked seizures. TLE often develops following a precipitating neurological insult, such as traumatic brain injury, stroke, infection, prolonged febrile seizures or status epilepticus. These insults can initiate a constellation of genetic, functional, network and systems level reorganization that transforms a normal non-epileptic brain into one capable of generating recurrent and unprovoked seizures....

  17. Cortical Reorganization following Injury Early in Life

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moran Artzi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The brain has a remarkable capacity for reorganization following injury, especially during the first years of life. Knowledge of structural reorganization and its consequences following perinatal injury is sparse. Here we studied changes in brain tissue volume, morphology, perfusion, and integrity in children with hemiplegia compared to typically developing children, using MRI. Children with hemiplegia demonstrated reduced total cerebral volume, with increased cerebrospinal fluid (CSF and reduced total white matter volumes, with no differences in total gray matter volume, compared to typically developing children. An increase in cortical thickness at the hemisphere contralateral to the lesion (CLH was detected in motor and language areas, which may reflect compensation for the gray matter loss in the lesion area or retention of ipsilateral pathways. In addition, reduced cortical thickness, perfusion, and surface area were detected in limbic areas. Increased CSF volume and precentral cortical thickness and reduced white matter volume were correlated with worse motor performance. Brain reorganization of the gray matter within the CLH, while not necessarily indicating better outcome, is suggested as a response to neuronal deficits following injury early in life.

  18. The epigenetic landscape of alcoholism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnan, Harish R; Sakharkar, Amul J; Teppen, Tara L; Berkel, Tiffani D M; Pandey, Subhash C

    2014-01-01

    Alcoholism is a complex psychiatric disorder that has a multifactorial etiology. Epigenetic mechanisms are uniquely capable of accounting for the multifactorial nature of the disease in that they are highly stable and are affected by environmental factors, including alcohol itself. Chromatin remodeling causes changes in gene expression in specific brain regions contributing to the endophenotypes of alcoholism such as tolerance and dependence. The epigenetic mechanisms that regulate changes in gene expression observed in addictive behaviors respond not only to alcohol exposure but also to comorbid psychopathology such as the presence of anxiety and stress. This review summarizes recent developments in epigenetic research that may play a role in alcoholism. We propose that pharmacologically manipulating epigenetic targets, as demonstrated in various preclinical models, hold great therapeutic potential in the treatment and prevention of alcoholism. © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Twin methodology in epigenetic studies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tan, Qihua; Christiansen, Lene; von Bornemann Hjelmborg, Jacob

    2015-01-01

    of diseases to molecular phenotypes in functional genomics especially in epigenetics, a thriving field of research that concerns the environmental regulation of gene expression through DNA methylation, histone modification, microRNA and long non-coding RNA expression, etc. The application of the twin method...... to molecular phenotypes offers new opportunities to study the genetic (nature) and environmental (nurture) contributions to epigenetic regulation of gene activity during developmental, ageing and disease processes. Besides the classical twin model, the case co-twin design using identical twins discordant...... for a trait or disease is becoming a popular and powerful design for epigenome-wide association study in linking environmental exposure to differential epigenetic regulation and to disease status while controlling for individual genetic make-up. It can be expected that novel uses of twin methods in epigenetic...

  20. Epigenetic Regulation of Telomere Maintenance

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fojtová, M.; Fajkus, Jiří

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 143, 1-3 (2014), s. 125-135 ISSN 1424-8581 Institutional support: RVO:68081707 Keywords : Chromatin * DNA methylation * Epigenetic s Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 1.561, year: 2014

  1. Epigenetic inheritance, prions and evolution

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Johannes Manjrekar

    2017-07-11

    classical' TEI phenomena and their possible implications for evolution. The review then focusses on a less-discussed, unique kind of protein-only epigenetic inheritance mediated by prions. Much remains to be learnt about the ...

  2. Epigenetic Editing: targeted rewriting of epigenetic marks to modulate expression of selected target genes.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Groote, M.L.; Verschure, P.J.; Rots, M.G.

    2012-01-01

    Despite significant advances made in epigenetic research in recent decades, many questions remain unresolved, especially concerning cause and consequence of epigenetic marks with respect to gene expression modulation (GEM). Technologies allowing the targeting of epigenetic enzymes to predetermined

  3. Epigenetic Editing : targeted rewriting of epigenetic marks to modulate expression of selected target genes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Groote, Marloes L.; Verschure, Pernette J.; Rots, Marianne G.

    2012-01-01

    Despite significant advances made in epigenetic research in recent decades, many questions remain unresolved, especially concerning cause and consequence of epigenetic marks with respect to gene expression modulation (GEM). Technologies allowing the targeting of epigenetic enzymes to predetermined

  4. Reassessing cortical reorganization in the primary sensorimotor cortex following arm amputation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makin, Tamar R; Scholz, Jan; Henderson Slater, David; Johansen-Berg, Heidi; Tracey, Irene

    2015-08-01

    The role of cortical activity in generating and abolishing chronic pain is increasingly emphasized in the clinical community. Perhaps the most striking example of this is the maladaptive plasticity theory, according to which phantom pain arises from remapping of cortically neighbouring representations (lower face) into the territory of the missing hand following amputation. This theory has been extended to a wide range of chronic pain conditions, such as complex regional pain syndrome. Yet, despite its growing popularity, the evidence to support the maladaptive plasticity theory is largely based on correlations between pain ratings and oftentimes crude measurements of cortical reorganization, with little consideration of potential contributions of other clinical factors, such as adaptive behaviour, in driving the identified brain plasticity. Here, we used a physiologically meaningful measurement of cortical reorganization to reassess its relationship to phantom pain in upper limb amputees. We identified small yet consistent shifts in lip representation contralateral to the missing hand towards, but not invading, the hand area. However, we were unable to identify any statistical relationship between cortical reorganization and phantom sensations or pain either with this measurement or with the traditional Euclidian distance measurement. Instead, we demonstrate that other factors may contribute to the observed remapping. Further research that reassesses more broadly the relationship between cortical reorganization and chronic pain is warranted. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain.

  5. Epigenetic regulation of persistent pain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, Guang; Ren, Ke; Dubner, Ronald

    2014-01-01

    Persistent or chronic pain is tightly associated with various environmental changes and linked to abnormal gene expression within cells processing nociceptive signaling. Epigenetic regulation governs gene expression in response to environmental cues. Recent animal model and clinical studies indicate that epigenetic regulation plays an important role in the development/maintenance of persistent pain and, possibly the transition of acute pain to chronic pain, thus shedding light in a direction for development of new therapeutics for persistent pain. PMID:24948399

  6. Epigenetic regulation of neuroblastoma development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durinck, Kaat; Speleman, Frank

    2018-01-19

    In recent years, technological advances have enabled a detailed landscaping of the epigenome and the mechanisms of epigenetic regulation that drive normal cell function, development and cancer. Rather than merely a structural entity to support genome compaction, we now look at chromatin as a very dynamic and essential constellation that is actively participating in the tight orchestration of transcriptional regulation as well as DNA replication and repair. The unique feature of chromatin flexibility enabling fast switches towards more or less restricted epigenetic cellular states is, not surprisingly, intimately connected to cancer development and treatment resistance, and the central role of epigenetic alterations in cancer is illustrated by the finding that up to 50% of all mutations across cancer entities affect proteins controlling the chromatin status. We summarize recent insights into epigenetic rewiring underlying neuroblastoma (NB) tumor formation ranging from changes in DNA methylation patterns and mutations in epigenetic regulators to global effects on transcriptional regulatory circuits that involve key players in NB oncogenesis. Insights into the disruption of the homeostatic epigenetic balance contributing to developmental arrest of sympathetic progenitor cells and subsequent NB oncogenesis are rapidly growing and will be exploited towards the development of novel therapeutic strategies to increase current survival rates of patients with high-risk NB.

  7. Epigenetics across the human lifespan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanherkar, Riya R.; Bhatia-Dey, Naina; Csoka, Antonei B.

    2014-01-01

    Epigenetics has the potential to explain various biological phenomena that have heretofore defied complete explication. This review describes the various types of endogenous human developmental milestones such as birth, puberty, and menopause, as well as the diverse exogenous environmental factors that influence human health, in a chronological epigenetic context. We describe the entire course of human life from periconception to death and chronologically note all of the potential internal timepoints and external factors that influence the human epigenome. Ultimately, the environment presents these various factors to the individual that influence the epigenome, and the unique epigenetic and genetic profile of each individual also modulates the specific response to these factors. During the course of human life, we are exposed to an environment that abounds with a potent and dynamic milieu capable of triggering chemical changes that activate or silence genes. There is constant interaction between the external and internal environments that is required for normal development and health maintenance as well as for influencing disease load and resistance. For example, exposure to pharmaceutical and toxic chemicals, diet, stress, exercise, and other environmental factors are capable of eliciting positive or negative epigenetic modifications with lasting effects on development, metabolism and health. These can impact the body so profoundly as to permanently alter the epigenetic profile of an individual. We also present a comprehensive new hypothesis of how these diverse environmental factors cause both direct and indirect epigenetic changes and how this knowledge can ultimately be used to improve personalized medicine. PMID:25364756

  8. Epigenetic Modifications and Diabetic Retinopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renu A. Kowluru

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Diabetic retinopathy remains one of the most debilitating chronic complications, but despite extensive research in the field, the exact mechanism(s responsible for how retina is damaged in diabetes remains ambiguous. Many metabolic pathways have been implicated in its development, and genes associated with these pathways are altered. Diabetic environment also facilitates epigenetics modifications, which can alter the gene expression without permanent changes in DNA sequence. The role of epigenetics in diabetic retinopathy is now an emerging area, and recent work has shown that genes encoding mitochondrial superoxide dismutase (Sod2 and matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9 are epigenetically modified, activates of epigenetic modification enzymes, histone lysine demethylase 1 (LSD1, and DNA methyltransferase are increased, and the micro RNAs responsible for regulating nuclear transcriptional factor and VEGF are upregulated. With the growing evidence of epigenetic modifications in diabetic retinopathy, better understanding of these modifications has potential to identify novel targets to inhibit this devastating disease. Fortunately, the inhibitors and mimics targeted towards histone modification, DNA methylation, and miRNAs are now being tried for cancer and other chronic diseases, and better understanding of the role of epigenetics in diabetic retinopathy will open the door for their possible use in combating this blinding disease.

  9. Epigenetics and Breast Cancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    An T. Vo

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Several of the active compounds in foods, poisons, drugs, and industrial chemicals may, by epigenetic mechanisms, increase or decrease the risk of breast cancers. Enzymes that are involved in DNA methylation and histone modifications have been shown to be altered in several types of breast and other cancers resulting in abnormal patterns of methylation and/or acetylation. Hypermethylation at the CpG islands found in estrogen response element (ERE promoters occurs in conjunction with ligand-bonded alpha subunit estrogen receptor (Erα dimers wherein the ligand ERα dimer complex acts as a transcription factor and binds to the ERE promoter. Ligands could be 17-β-estradiol (E2, phytoestrogens, heterocyclic amines, and many other identified food additives and heavy metals. The dimer recruits DNA methyltransferases which catalyze the transfer of methyl groups from S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAM to 5′-cytosine on CpG islands. Other enzymes are recruited to the region by ligand-ERα dimers which activate DNA demethylases to act simultaneously to increase gene expression of protooncogenes and growth-promoting genes. Ligand-ERα dimers also recruit histone acetyltransferase to the ERE promoter region. Histone demethylases such as JMJD2B and histone methyltransferases are enzymes which demethylate lysine residues on histones H3 and/or H4. This makes the chromatin accessible for transcription factors and enzymes.

  10. Transgenerational inheritance or resetting of stress-induced epigenetic modifications: two sides of the same coin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Penny J Tricker

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The transgenerational inheritance of stress-induced epigenetic modifications is still controversial. Despite several examples of defence ‘priming’ and induced genetic rearrangements, the involvement and persistence of transgenerational epigenetic modifications is not known to be general. Here I argue that non-transmission of epigenetic marks through meiosis may be regarded as an epigenetic modification in itself, and that we should understand the implications for plant evolution in the context of both selection for and selection against transgenerational epigenetic memory. Recent data suggest that both epigenetic inheritance and resetting are mechanistically directed and targeted. Stress-induced epigenetic modifications may buffer against DNA sequence-based evolution to maintain plasticity, or may form part of plasticity’s adaptive potential. To date we have tended to concentrate on the question of whether and for how long epigenetic memory persists. I argue that we should now re-direct our question to investigate the differences between where it persists and where it does not, to understand the higher order evolutionary methods in play and their contribution.

  11. Environmental epigenetics: A promising venue for developing next-generation pollution biomonitoring tools in marine invertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suarez-Ulloa, Victoria; Gonzalez-Romero, Rodrigo; Eirin-Lopez, Jose M

    2015-09-15

    Environmental epigenetics investigates the cause-effect relationships between specific environmental factors and the subsequent epigenetic modifications triggering adaptive responses in the cell. Given the dynamic and potentially reversible nature of the different types of epigenetic marks, environmental epigenetics constitutes a promising venue for developing fast and sensible biomonitoring programs. Indeed, several epigenetic biomarkers have been successfully developed and applied in traditional model organisms (e.g., human and mouse). Nevertheless, the lack of epigenetic knowledge in other ecologically and environmentally relevant organisms has hampered the application of these tools in a broader range of ecosystems, most notably in the marine environment. Fortunately, that scenario is now changing thanks to the growing availability of complete reference genome sequences along with the development of high-throughput DNA sequencing and bioinformatic methods. Altogether, these resources make the epigenetic study of marine organisms (and more specifically marine invertebrates) a reality. By building on this knowledge, the present work provides a timely perspective highlighting the extraordinary potential of environmental epigenetic analyses as a promising source of rapid and sensible tools for pollution biomonitoring, using marine invertebrates as sentinel organisms. This strategy represents an innovative, groundbreaking approach, improving the conservation and management of natural resources in the oceans. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. [Epigenetics of schizophrenia: a review].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivollier, F; Lotersztajn, L; Chaumette, B; Krebs, M-O; Kebir, O

    2014-10-01

    Schizophrenia is a frequent and disabling disease associated with heterogeneous psychiatric phenotypes. It emerges during childhood, adolescence or young adulthood and has dramatic consequences for the affected individuals, causing considerable familial and social burden, as well as increasing health expenses. Although some progress has been made in the understanding of their physiopathology, many questions remain unsolved, and the disease is still poorly understood. The prevailing hypothesis regarding psychotic disorders proposes that a combination of genetic and/or environmental factors, during critical periods of brain development increases the risk for these illnesses. Epigenetic regulations, such as DNA methylation, can mediate gene x environment interactions at the level of the genome and may provide a potential substrate to explain the variability in symptom severity and family heritability. Initially, epigenetics was used to design mitotic and meiotic changes in gene transcription that could not be attributed to genetic mutations. It referred later to changes in the epigenome not transmitted through the germline. Thus, epigenetics refers to a wide range of molecular mechanisms including DNA methylation of cytosine residues in CpG dinucleotides and post-translational histone modifications. These mechanisms alter the way the transcriptional factors bind the DNA, modulating its expression. Prenatal and postnatal environmental factors may affect these epigenetics factors, having responsability in long-term DNA transcription, and influencing the development of psychiatric disorders. The object of this review is to present the state of knowledge in epigenetics of schizophrenia, outlining the most recent findings in the matter. We did so using Pubmed, researching words such as 'epigenetics', 'epigenetic', 'schizophrenia', 'psychosis', 'psychiatric'. This review summarizes evidences mostly for two epigenetic mechanisms: DNA methylation and post

  13. Changes in Allostatic Load during workplace reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlsson, Rikke Hinge; Hansen, Åse Marie; Nielsen, Martin Lindhardt; Blønd, Morten; Netterstrøm, Bo

    2017-12-01

    Allostatic Load (AL) represents the strain on the body produced by repeated physiologic or allostatic responses activated during stressful situations. Several cross-sectional studies have found empirical substantiation for the relationship between impaired psychosocial work environment and high AL. The aim of this longitudinal study is to investigate changes in AL during workplace reorganization that has been shown to cause impaired psychosocial work environment. Moreover, we aim to investigate the association between changes in AL and changes in psychosocial work environment (job strain, effort-reward imbalance) and psychological distress (stress symptoms and perceived stress). A major reorganization of non-state public offices was effectuated in Denmark on 1 January 2007. In 2006 and 2008, we collected clinical and questionnaire data from 359 participants, 265 women and 94 men, employed in seven municipality or county administrations. Four municipalities and one county merged with others, while one municipality and one county remained unmerged. We calculated the AL score based on 13 physiological markers reflecting stress responses of the cardiovascular, metabolic, neuroendocrine and immune systems. We analysed changes in AL from 2006 to 2008. AL increased significantly during workplace reorganization in the whole study group but we observed only a tendency of significant increase in AL in the merger group compared with the control group. Moreover, we observed no association between the changes in AL and changes in psychosocial work environment and psychological distress. This result leaves the conclusion unclear but contributes to the limited research in this area with a longitudinal design and focus on low-risk levels and small changes in AL in healthy people as predictor of future disease. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Gathering by the Red Sea highlights links between environment and epigenetics

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Mo

    2017-06-06

    The number of conferences on epigenetics has been increasing in the past decade, underscoring the impact of the field on a variety of areas in biology and medicine. However, the mechanistic role of the epigenome in adaptation and inheritance, and how the environment may impinge on epigenetic control, are topics of growing debate. Those themes were the focus of the inaugural international King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) Research Conference on Environmental Epigenetics in Saudi Arabia, where more than 100 participants from 19 countries enjoyed vibrant scientific discussions and a pleasant February breeze from the Red Sea.

  15. An overview of epigenetics in nursing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Ashley Erin; Adamian, Maria; Taylor, Jacquelyn Y

    2013-12-01

    Epigenetic changes to the genome are biochemical alterations to the DNA that do not change an individual's genome but do change and influence gene expression. The nursing profession is qualified to conduct and integrate epigenetic-focused nursing research into practice. This article discusses current epigenetic nursing research, provides an overview of how epigenetic research relates to nursing practice, makes recommendations, and provides epigenetic online resources for nursing research. An overview of major epigenetic studies in nursing (specific to childbirth studies, preeclampsia, metabolic syndrome, immunotherapy cancer, and pain) is provided, with recommendations on next steps. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. The IDC-thesaurus and its reorganization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Senf, W.

    1979-04-01

    Final report on the IDC-Thesaurus and its reorganization. The Thesaurus set up for documentation of chemistry and its borderline areas is built up of concept sets. These concept sets unite all synonyms and are linked by concept relations reflecting the hierarchical structure of the Thesaurus. Analysis of the polyhierarchy of the Thesaurus. Composite concepts are subdivided into their broader terms of the abstraction system. These concepts as well as words with different spelling are transferred from the retrieval Thesaurus to a Thesaurus dictionary from which a file is set up for correcting the complete documentation file. (orig.) 891 WB 892 MB [de

  17. Unresolved trauma in mothers: intergenerational effects and the role of reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iyengar, Udita; Kim, Sohye; Martinez, Sheila; Fonagy, Peter; Strathearn, Lane

    2014-01-01

    A mother's unresolved trauma may interfere with her ability to sensitively respond to her infant, thus affecting the development of attachment in her own child, and potentially contributing to the intergenerational transmission of trauma. One novel construct within the Dynamic Maturational Model of Attachment and Adaptation (DMM) coding of the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI) is "reorganization," a process whereby speakers are actively changing their understanding of past and present experiences and moving toward attachment security. We conducted a study of mothers with unresolved trauma, exploring their own attachment classification, attachment outcomes of their children, and the potential effects of reorganization on child attachment. Forty-seven first-time mothers participated in the AAI during pregnancy, and returned with their child at 11 months to assess child attachment using the Strange Situation Procedure. Mothers with and without unresolved trauma were compared. We found that mothers with unresolved trauma had insecure attachment themselves and were more likely to have infants with insecure attachment. However, the one exception was that all of the mothers with unresolved trauma who were reorganizing toward secure attachment had infants with secure attachment. These preliminary findings suggest that mothers who are reorganizing may be able to more sensitively respond to their child's cues, contributing to the development of secure attachment. While our results need to be replicated in a larger cohort, this study is the first to explore the construct of reorganization and its potential relationship with child attachment. If confirmed in future studies, it may provide clinical insight into the intergenerational transmission of insecure attachment within the context of unresolved trauma.

  18. Homeland Security: Scope of the Secretary's Reorganization Authority

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Vina, Stephen R

    2005-01-01

    ...). Section 872 of the Homeland Security Act gives the Secretary of Homeland Security the authority to reorganize "functions" and "organizational units" within the Department either independently, 60...

  19. Nature, Nurture and Epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crews, David; Gillette, Ross; Miller-Crews, Isaac; Gore, Andrea C.; Skinner, Michael K.

    2015-01-01

    Real life by definition combines heritability (e.g., the legacy of exposures) and experience (e.g. stress during sensitive or ‘critical’ periods), but how to study or even model this interaction has proven difficult. The hoary concept of evaluating traits according to nature vs. nurture continues to persist despite repeated demonstrations that it retards, rather than advances, our understanding of biological processes. Behavioral genetics has proven the obvious, that genes influences behavior and, vice versa, that behavior influences genes. The concept of Genes X Environment (G X E) and its modern variants was viewed as an improvement on nature-nurture but has proven that, except in rare instances, it is not possible to fractionate phenotypes into these constituent elements. The entanglement inherent in terms such as nature-nurture or GXE is a Gordian knot that cannot be dissected or even split. Given that the world today is not what it was less than a century ago, yet the arbitrator (differential survival and reproduction) has stayed constant, de novo principles and practices are needed to better predict what the future holds. Put simply, the transformation that is now occurring within and between individuals as a product of global endocrine disruption is quite independent of what has been regarded as evolution by selection. This new perspective should focus on how epigenetic modifications might revise approaches to understand how the phenotype and, in particular its components, is shaped. In this review we summarize the literature in this developing area, focusing on our research on the fungicide vinclozolin. PMID:25102229

  20. Epigenetics and Colorectal Cancer Pathogenesis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bardhan, Kankana; Liu, Kebin

    2013-01-01

    Colorectal cancer (CRC) develops through a multistage process that results from the progressive accumulation of genetic mutations, and frequently as a result of mutations in the Wnt signaling pathway. However, it has become evident over the past two decades that epigenetic alterations of the chromatin, particularly the chromatin components in the promoter regions of tumor suppressors and oncogenes, play key roles in CRC pathogenesis. Epigenetic regulation is organized at multiple levels, involving primarily DNA methylation and selective histone modifications in cancer cells. Assessment of the CRC epigenome has revealed that virtually all CRCs have aberrantly methylated genes and that the average CRC methylome has thousands of abnormally methylated genes. Although relatively less is known about the patterns of specific histone modifications in CRC, selective histone modifications and resultant chromatin conformation have been shown to act, in concert with DNA methylation, to regulate gene expression to mediate CRC pathogenesis. Moreover, it is now clear that not only DNA methylation but also histone modifications are reversible processes. The increased understanding of epigenetic regulation of gene expression in the context of CRC pathogenesis has led to development of epigenetic biomarkers for CRC diagnosis and epigenetic drugs for CRC therapy

  1. Transgenerational epigenetics and environmental justice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothstein, Mark A; Harrell, Heather L; Marchant, Gary E

    2017-07-01

    Human transmission to offspring and future generations of acquired epigenetic modifications has not been definitively established, although there are several environmental exposures with suggestive evidence. This article uses three examples of hazardous substances with greater exposures in vulnerable populations: pesticides, lead, and diesel exhaust. It then considers whether, if there were scientific evidence of transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, there would be greater attention given to concerns about environmental justice in environmental laws, regulations, and policies at all levels of government. To provide a broader perspective on environmental justice the article discusses two of the most commonly cited approaches to environmental justice. John Rawls's theory of justice as fairness, a form of egalitarianism, is frequently invoked for the principle that differential treatment of individuals is justified only if actions are designed to benefit those with the greatest need. Another theory, the capabilities approach of Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum, focuses on whether essential capabilities of society, such as life and health, are made available to all individuals. In applying principles of environmental justice the article considers whether there is a heightened societal obligation to protect the most vulnerable individuals from hazardous exposures that could adversely affect their offspring through epigenetic mechanisms. It concludes that unless there were compelling evidence of transgenerational epigenetic harms, it is unlikely that there would be a significant impetus to adopt new policies to prevent epigenetic harms by invoking principles of environmental justice.

  2. Epigenetics and Colorectal Cancer Pathogenesis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bardhan, Kankana; Liu, Kebin, E-mail: Kliu@gru.edu [Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Medical College of Georgia, and Cancer Center, Georgia Regents University, Augusta, GA 30912 (United States)

    2013-06-05

    Colorectal cancer (CRC) develops through a multistage process that results from the progressive accumulation of genetic mutations, and frequently as a result of mutations in the Wnt signaling pathway. However, it has become evident over the past two decades that epigenetic alterations of the chromatin, particularly the chromatin components in the promoter regions of tumor suppressors and oncogenes, play key roles in CRC pathogenesis. Epigenetic regulation is organized at multiple levels, involving primarily DNA methylation and selective histone modifications in cancer cells. Assessment of the CRC epigenome has revealed that virtually all CRCs have aberrantly methylated genes and that the average CRC methylome has thousands of abnormally methylated genes. Although relatively less is known about the patterns of specific histone modifications in CRC, selective histone modifications and resultant chromatin conformation have been shown to act, in concert with DNA methylation, to regulate gene expression to mediate CRC pathogenesis. Moreover, it is now clear that not only DNA methylation but also histone modifications are reversible processes. The increased understanding of epigenetic regulation of gene expression in the context of CRC pathogenesis has led to development of epigenetic biomarkers for CRC diagnosis and epigenetic drugs for CRC therapy.

  3. Epigenetic effects of ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    EI-Naggar, A.M.

    2007-01-01

    Data generated during the last three decades provide evidence of Epigenetic Effects that ave-induced by ionizing radiation, particularly those of high LET values, and low level dose exposures. Epigenesist is defined as the stepwise process by which genetic information, as modified by environmental influences, is translated into the substance and behavior of cells, tissues, organism.The epigenetic effects cited in the literature are essentially classified into fine types depending on the type and nature of the effect induced.The most accepted postulation, for the occurrence of these epigenetic effects, is a radiation induced bio electric disturbances in the environment of the non-irradiated cellular volume. This will trigger signals that will induce effects in the unirradiated cells.The epigenetic effects referenced in the literature up to date are five types; namely, Genomic Instability, Bystander. Effects, Clastogenic Plasma Factors,, Abscopal Effects, and Tran generational Effects.The demonstration of Epigenetic Effects associated with exposure to ionizing radiation indicates the need to re- examine the concept of radiation dose and target size. Also an improved understanding of qualifiring and quantifying radiation risk estimates may be attained. Also, a more logical means to understand the underlying mechanisms of radiation induced carcinogenic transformation of cells

  4. Reorganization of early visual cortex functional connectivity following selective peripheral and central visual loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabbah, Norman; Sanda, Nicolae; Authié, Colas N; Mohand-Saïd, Saddek; Sahel, José-Alain; Habas, Christophe; Amedi, Amir; Safran, Avinoam B

    2017-02-24

    Behavioral alterations emerging after central or peripheral vision loss suggest that cerebral reorganization occurs for both the afferented and deafferented early visual cortex (EVC). We explored the functional reorganization of the central and peripheral EVC following visual field defects specifically affecting central or peripheral vision. Compared to normally sighted, afferented central and peripheral EVC enhance their functional connectivity with areas involved in visual processing, whereas deafferented central and peripheral EVC increase their functional connectivity with more remote regions. The connectivity pattern of afferented EVC suggests adaptive changes that might enhance the visual processing capacity whereas the connectivity pattern of deafferented EVC may reflect the involvement of these regions in high-order mechanisms. Characterizing and understanding the plastic changes induced by these visual defects is essential for any attempt to develop efficient rehabilitation strategies.

  5. Epigenetic alterations underlying autoimmune diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aslani, Saeed; Mahmoudi, Mahdi; Karami, Jafar; Jamshidi, Ahmad Reza; Malekshahi, Zahra; Nicknam, Mohammad Hossein

    2016-01-01

    Recent breakthroughs in genetic explorations have extended our understanding through discovery of genetic patterns subjected to autoimmune diseases (AID). Genetics, on the contrary, has not answered all the conundrums to describe a comprehensive explanation of causal mechanisms of disease etiopathology with regard to the function of environment, sex, or aging. The other side of the coin, epigenetics which is defined by gene manifestation modification without DNA sequence alteration, reportedly has come in to provide new insights towards disease apprehension through bridging the genetics and environmental factors. New investigations in genetic and environmental contributing factors for autoimmunity provide new explanation whereby the interactions between genetic elements and epigenetic modifications signed by environmental agents may be responsible for autoimmune disease initiation and perpetuation. It is aimed through this article to review recent progress attempting to reveal how epigenetics associates with the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases.

  6. Epigenetics in cancer stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toh, Tan Boon; Lim, Jhin Jieh; Chow, Edward Kai-Hua

    2017-02-01

    Compelling evidence have demonstrated that bulk tumors can arise from a unique subset of cells commonly termed "cancer stem cells" that has been proposed to be a strong driving force of tumorigenesis and a key mechanism of therapeutic resistance. Recent advances in epigenomics have illuminated key mechanisms by which epigenetic regulation contribute to cancer progression. In this review, we present a discussion of how deregulation of various epigenetic pathways can contribute to cancer initiation and tumorigenesis, particularly with respect to maintenance and survival of cancer stem cells. This information, together with several promising clinical and preclinical trials of epigenetic modulating drugs, offer new possibilities for targeting cancer stem cells as well as improving cancer therapy overall.

  7. Discussing epigenetics in Southern California

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    With the goal of discussing how epigenetic control and chromatin remodeling contribute to the various processes that lead to cellular plasticity and disease, this symposium marks the collaboration between the Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM) in France and the University of California, Irvine (UCI). Organized by Paolo Sassone-Corsi (UCI) and held at the Beckman Center of the National Academy of Sciences at the UCI campus December 15–16, 2011, this was the first of a series of international conferences on epigenetics dedicated to the scientific community in Southern California. The meeting also served as the official kick off for the newly formed Center for Epigenetics and Metabolism at the School of Medicine, UCI (http://cem.igb.uci.edu). PMID:22414797

  8. Transgenes and their contributions to epigenetic research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Shortly after gene transfer technologies had been established for different plant species, the first reports emerged about transgenes showing unexpected segregation patterns due to unstable expression. Initially, the erratic expression behavior of transgenes was considered a nuisance that impeded the impact and efficiency of a new technology. With the investigation of transgene silencing effects, however, it soon became clear that transgenes had helped us in a rather unexpected way to identify novel molecular pathways that were highly relevant to plant development and evolution. This article gives an account of a journey that started with the analysis of transgene-related silencing events and that led to the discovery of a new molecular world of small RNAs and epigenetic marks that regulate plant gene expression and adaptation to environmental changes.

  9. Epigenetic Regulation of the Thermogenic Adipose Program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sambeat, Audrey; Gulyaeva, Olga; Dempersmier, Jon; Sul, Hei Sook

    2017-01-01

    In contrast to white adipose tissue (WAT), which stores energy in the form of triglycerides, brown adipose tissue (BAT) dissipates energy by producing heat to maintain body temperature by burning glucose and fatty acids in a process called adaptive thermogenesis. The presence of an inducible thermogenic adipose tissue, and its beneficial effects for maintaining body weight and glucose and lipid homeostasis, has raised intense interest in understanding the regulation of thermogenesis. Elucidating the regulatory mechanisms underlying the thermogenic adipose program may provide excellent targets for therapeutics against obesity and diabetes. Here we review recent research on the role of epigenetics in the thermogenic gene program, focusing on DNA methylation and histone modifications. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Introduction to the Special Section on Epigenetics

    OpenAIRE

    Lester, Barry M.; Conradt, Elisabeth; Marsit, Carmen

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetics provides the opportunity to revolutionize our understanding of the role of genetics and the environment in explaining human behavior, although the use of epigenetics to study human behavior is just beginning. In this introduction, the authors present the basics of epigenetics in a way that is designed to make this exciting field accessible to a wide readership. The authors describe the history of human behavioral epigenetic research in the context of other disciplines and graphica...

  11. Epigenetic dynamics across the cell cycle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kheir, Tony Bou; Lund, Anders H.

    2010-01-01

    Progression of the mammalian cell cycle depends on correct timing and co-ordination of a series of events, which are managed by the cellular transcriptional machinery and epigenetic mechanisms governing genome accessibility. Epigenetic chromatin modifications are dynamic across the cell cycle...... a correct inheritance of epigenetic chromatin modifications to daughter cells. In this chapter, we summarize the current knowledge on the dynamics of epigenetic chromatin modifications during progression of the cell cycle....

  12. Unlocking epigenetic codes in neurogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Bing; Jin, Peng

    2014-01-01

    During embryonic and adult neurogenesis, neuronal stem cells follow a highly conserved path of differentiation to give rise to functional neurons at various developmental stages. Epigenetic regulation—including DNA modifications, histone modifications, and noncoding regulatory RNAs, such as microRNA (miRNA) and long noncoding RNA (lncRNA)—plays a pivotal role in embryonic and adult neurogenesis. Here we review the latest in our understanding of the epigenetic regulation in neurogenesis, with a particular focus on newly identified cytosine modifications and their dynamics, along with our perspective for future studies. PMID:24939932

  13. Sensory Cortical Plasticity Participates in the Epigenetic Regulation of Robust Memory Formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phan, Mimi L; Bieszczad, Kasia M

    2016-01-01

    Neuroplasticity remodels sensory cortex across the lifespan. A function of adult sensory cortical plasticity may be capturing available information during perception for memory formation. The degree of experience-dependent remodeling in sensory cortex appears to determine memory strength and specificity for important sensory signals. A key open question is how plasticity is engaged to induce different degrees of sensory cortical remodeling. Neural plasticity for long-term memory requires the expression of genes underlying stable changes in neuronal function, structure, connectivity, and, ultimately, behavior. Lasting changes in transcriptional activity may depend on epigenetic mechanisms; some of the best studied in behavioral neuroscience are DNA methylation and histone acetylation and deacetylation, which, respectively, promote and repress gene expression. One purpose of this review is to propose epigenetic regulation of sensory cortical remodeling as a mechanism enabling the transformation of significant information from experiences into content-rich memories of those experiences. Recent evidence suggests how epigenetic mechanisms regulate highly specific reorganization of sensory cortical representations that establish a widespread network for memory. Thus, epigenetic mechanisms could initiate events to establish exceptionally persistent and robust memories at a systems-wide level by engaging sensory cortical plasticity for gating what and how much information becomes encoded.

  14. Epigenetic drift in the aging genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tan, Qihua; Heijmans, Bastiaan T; Hjelmborg, Jacob V B

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Current epigenetic studies on aging are dominated by the cross-sectional design that correlates subjects' ages or age groups with their measured epigenetic profiles. Such studies have been more aimed at age prediction or building up the epigenetic clock of age rather than focusing on ...

  15. Epigenetics: a new frontier in dentistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, S D; Hughes, T E; Adler, C J; Brook, A H; Townsend, G C

    2014-06-01

    In 2007, only four years after the completion of the Human Genome Project, the journal Science announced that epigenetics was the 'breakthrough of the year'. Time magazine placed it second in the top 10 discoveries of 2009. While our genetic code (i.e. our DNA) contains all of the information to produce the elements we require to function, our epigenetic code determines when and where genes in the genetic code are expressed. Without the epigenetic code, the genetic code is like an orchestra without a conductor. Although there is now a substantial amount of published research on epigenetics in medicine and biology, epigenetics in dental research is in its infancy. However, epigenetics promises to become increasingly relevant to dentistry because of the role it plays in gene expression during development and subsequently potentially influencing oral disease susceptibility. This paper provides a review of the field of epigenetics aimed specifically at oral health professionals. It defines epigenetics, addresses the underlying concepts and provides details about specific epigenetic molecular mechanisms. Further, we discuss some of the key areas where epigenetics is implicated, and review the literature on epigenetics research in dentistry, including its relevance to clinical disciplines. This review considers some implications of epigenetics for the future of dental practice, including a 'personalized medicine' approach to the management of common oral diseases. © 2014 Australian Dental Association.

  16. Epigenetic Case Studies in Agricultural Animals

    Science.gov (United States)

    In many biological processes, the regulation of gene expression involves epigenetic mechanisms. An altered pattern of epigenetic modification is central to many animal diseases. Using animal disease models, we have studied one of the major epigenetic components: DNA methylation. We characterized the...

  17. Epigenetic Epidemiology of Complex Diseases Using Twins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tan, Qihua

    2013-01-01

    through multiple epigenetic mechanisms. This paper reviews the new developments in using twins to study disease-related epigenetic alterations, links them to lifetime environmental exposure with a focus on the discordant twin design and proposes novel data-analytical approaches with the aim of promoting...... a more efficient use of twins in epigenetic studies of complex human diseases....

  18. Targeting epigenetic processes in photodynamic therapy-induced anticancer immunity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malgorzata eWachowska

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Photodynamic therapy (PDT of cancer is an approved therapeutic procedure that generates oxidative stress leading to cell death of tumour and stromal cells. Cell death resulting from oxidative damage to intracellular components leads to the release of damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs that trigger robust inflammatory response and creates local conditions for effective sampling of tumour-associated antigens (TAA by antigen presenting cells. The latter can trigger development of TAA-specific adaptive immune response. However, due to a number of mechanisms, including epigenetic regulation of TAA expression, tumour cells evade immune recognition. Therefore, numerous approaches are being developed to combine PDT with immunotherapies to allow development of systemic immunity. In this review we describe immunoregulatory mechanisms of epigenetic treatments that were shown to restore the expression of epigenetically silenced or down-regulated major histocompatibility complex (MHC molecules as well as TAA. We also discuss the results of our recent studies showing that epigenetic treatments based on administration of methyltransferase inhibitors in combination with photodynamic therapy can release effective mechanisms leading to development of antitumour immunity and potentiated antitumour effects.

  19. 75 FR 29451 - Agency Reorganization and Delegations of Authority

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-26

    ... Reorganization and Delegations of Authority AGENCY: Federal Maritime Commission. ACTION: Final rule. SUMMARY: The... reflect the reorganization of the agency that took effect January 31, 2010, and to delegate authority to.... This rule also corrects typographical errors in two sections in the Commission's rules. DATES...

  20. Rotational reorganization of doped cholesteric liquid crystalline films

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eelkema, R.; M. Pollard, M.; Katsonis, N.; Vicario, J.; J. Broer, D.; Feringa, B.L.

    2006-01-01

    In this paper an unprecedented rotational reorganization of cholesteric liquid crystalline films is described. This rotational reorganization results from the conversion of a chiral molecular motor dopant to an isomer with a different helical twisting power, leading to a change in the cholesteric

  1. Motor System Reorganization After Stroke: Stimulating and Training Toward Perfection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adkins, DeAnna L.

    2015-01-01

    Stroke instigates regenerative responses that reorganize connectivity patterns among surviving neurons. The new connectivity patterns can be suboptimal for behavioral function. This review summarizes current knowledge on post-stroke motor system reorganization and emerging strategies for shaping it with manipulations of behavior and cortical activity to improve functional outcome. PMID:26328881

  2. Wealth distribution in Chinese bankruptcy reorganization law and practice

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ren, Yongqing

    2011-01-01

    Wealth distribution provisions in bankruptcy reorganization law, which regulate the distribution of the debtor's overall value among all the interested parties with an aim of ensuring a fair and equitable distribution, constitute an important part of the bankruptcy reorganization law. This article

  3. 44 CFR 64.4 - Effect on community eligibility resulting from boundary changes, governmental reorganization, etc.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... eligibility resulting from boundary changes, governmental reorganization, etc. 64.4 Section 64.4 Emergency... Effect on community eligibility resulting from boundary changes, governmental reorganization, etc. (a... community resulting from boundary changes, governmental reorganization, changes in state statutes or...

  4. CONCEPTS OF THE REORGANIZATION OF SERVICE PROCESSES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dóra DOBÁK

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available In this article the literature based review of the developing of (logistificated business processes and their reorganizations are shown briefly. The research of the service processes is also actual in our time giving work to managers and researches alike. In the narrowing market the increasing competition and the dominance of customers is a warning to the companies to carry out continuous rationalization and reductions of costs in order to increase efficiency. In this essay we would like to show briefly how we started our research primarily concentrating on technical literatures. First of all we concentrate on the improvement assets of processes. We will show some major tendencies in the process of Business Process Amelioration (BPA evolution. The production focused approach of services can mean significant process improvement therefore it is a good analysis method of the process improvement.

  5. Quantifying the Adaptive Cycle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David G Angeler

    Full Text Available The adaptive cycle was proposed as a conceptual model to portray patterns of change in complex systems. Despite the model having potential for elucidating change across systems, it has been used mainly as a metaphor, describing system dynamics qualitatively. We use a quantitative approach for testing premises (reorganisation, conservatism, adaptation in the adaptive cycle, using Baltic Sea phytoplankton communities as an example of such complex system dynamics. Phytoplankton organizes in recurring spring and summer blooms, a well-established paradigm in planktology and succession theory, with characteristic temporal trajectories during blooms that may be consistent with adaptive cycle phases. We used long-term (1994-2011 data and multivariate analysis of community structure to assess key components of the adaptive cycle. Specifically, we tested predictions about: reorganisation: spring and summer blooms comprise distinct community states; conservatism: community trajectories during individual adaptive cycles are conservative; and adaptation: phytoplankton species during blooms change in the long term. All predictions were supported by our analyses. Results suggest that traditional ecological paradigms such as phytoplankton successional models have potential for moving the adaptive cycle from a metaphor to a framework that can improve our understanding how complex systems organize and reorganize following collapse. Quantifying reorganization, conservatism and adaptation provides opportunities to cope with the intricacies and uncertainties associated with fast ecological change, driven by shifting system controls. Ultimately, combining traditional ecological paradigms with heuristics of complex system dynamics using quantitative approaches may help refine ecological theory and improve our understanding of the resilience of ecosystems.

  6. Quantifying the adaptive cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angeler, David G.; Allen, Craig R.; Garmestani, Ahjond S.; Gunderson, Lance H.; Hjerne, Olle; Winder, Monika

    2015-01-01

    The adaptive cycle was proposed as a conceptual model to portray patterns of change in complex systems. Despite the model having potential for elucidating change across systems, it has been used mainly as a metaphor, describing system dynamics qualitatively. We use a quantitative approach for testing premises (reorganisation, conservatism, adaptation) in the adaptive cycle, using Baltic Sea phytoplankton communities as an example of such complex system dynamics. Phytoplankton organizes in recurring spring and summer blooms, a well-established paradigm in planktology and succession theory, with characteristic temporal trajectories during blooms that may be consistent with adaptive cycle phases. We used long-term (1994–2011) data and multivariate analysis of community structure to assess key components of the adaptive cycle. Specifically, we tested predictions about: reorganisation: spring and summer blooms comprise distinct community states; conservatism: community trajectories during individual adaptive cycles are conservative; and adaptation: phytoplankton species during blooms change in the long term. All predictions were supported by our analyses. Results suggest that traditional ecological paradigms such as phytoplankton successional models have potential for moving the adaptive cycle from a metaphor to a framework that can improve our understanding how complex systems organize and reorganize following collapse. Quantifying reorganization, conservatism and adaptation provides opportunities to cope with the intricacies and uncertainties associated with fast ecological change, driven by shifting system controls. Ultimately, combining traditional ecological paradigms with heuristics of complex system dynamics using quantitative approaches may help refine ecological theory and improve our understanding of the resilience of ecosystems.

  7. Reorganization of the thalamocortical network in musicians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Shoji; Kirino, Eiji

    2017-06-01

    The cortico-thalamocortical network is relevant to music performance in that the network can regulate sensitivity to afferent input or sound, mediate the integration of multimodal information required for the performance, and play a role in skilled performance control. We, therefore, predicted that this network would be reorganized via musical training-induced neuroplasticity. To test this hypothesis, we analyzed resting-state functional connectivity of the thalamocortical network in musicians (n=35) and nonmusicians (n=35). The seed-to-voxel functional connectivity analysis of the left thalamus seed showed enhanced connectivity voxels in the precuneus/posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) in musicians compared with nonmusicians. Region of interest (ROI)-to-ROI functional connectivity analysis showed that the auditory areas were also more strongly connected with the left thalamus in musicians. Discriminant analysis using the ROI-to-ROI functional connectivity data of the precuneus/PCC and auditory areas as predictors yielded an 87% correct discrimination of musicians from nonmusicians. Therefore, we can conclude that, as a consequence of long-term musical training, musicians have a characteristically organized thalamocortical network. The precuneus and PCC are principal nodes of the default mode network and play a pivotal role in the manipulation of mental imagery. We propose that the reorganized thalamocortical network in musicians contributes not only to higher sensitivity to sound but also to the integration of mental imagery with sound, which are both presumed to be important for better music performance. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Genome reorganization during aging of dividing cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Macieira-Coelho, A.; Puvion-Dutilleul, F.

    1985-01-01

    The study of the effect of low dose rate ionizing radiation on the long-term proliferation of fibroblasts led to the observation that radiation accentuated the growth potential of the cells, favoring events which normally take place during division. These events could be related to the genome reorganization taking place during division. Hence, it has been hypothesized that the long-term proliferation of fibroblasts depends upon the potential for reorganization of the genome, the latter being a self-limiting process. At each division residual quantitative and qualitative changes would accumulate in chromatin, limiting the long-term potential for further rearrangements. The hypothesis was checked looking for quantitative and qualitative changes in DNA through the in vitro lifespan of human fibroblast populations. It was found that at each population doubling in 20% of the cells there is unequal distribution of DNA between sister cells. Results show that this could be due to errors in chromosome assembly and segregation, to loss of DNA, to errors during semiconservative DNA synthesis and to multiple rounds of DNA replication at a single origin. An increased alkali- and thermo-lability of chromatin was found during in vitro aging. At the ultrastructural level after mild decondensation, chromatin fibers were spaced and shorter. After Miller's spreading, most of the chromatin of old cells had lost the nucleosome organization and was fragmented. These chromatin changes became apparent only towards the end of the life span of human embryonic fibroblasts but were already present in a significant fraction of low population doubling level (PDL) fibroblasts from human adults. Almost all cells of low-PDL fibroblasts from the Werner syndrome presented these chromatin changes.

  9. Endoplasmic reticulum membrane reorganization is regulated by ionic homeostasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varadarajan, Shankar; Tanaka, Kayoko; Smalley, Joshua L; Bampton, Edward T W; Pellecchia, Maurizio; Dinsdale, David; Willars, Gary B; Cohen, Gerald M

    2013-01-01

    Recently we described a new, evolutionarily conserved cellular stress response characterized by a reversible reorganization of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membranes that is distinct from canonical ER stress and the unfolded protein response (UPR). Apogossypol, a putative broad spectrum BCL-2 family antagonist, was the prototype compound used to induce this ER membrane reorganization. Following microarray analysis of cells treated with apogossypol, we used connectivity mapping to identify a wide range of structurally diverse chemicals from different pharmacological classes and established their ability to induce ER membrane reorganization. Such structural diversity suggests that the mechanisms initiating ER membrane reorganization are also diverse and a major objective of the present study was to identify potentially common features of these mechanisms. In order to explore this, we used hierarchical clustering of transcription profiles for a number of chemicals that induce membrane reorganization and discovered two distinct clusters. One cluster contained chemicals with known effects on Ca(2+) homeostasis. Support for this was provided by the findings that ER membrane reorganization was induced by agents that either deplete ER Ca(2+) (thapsigargin) or cause an alteration in cellular Ca(2+) handling (calmodulin antagonists). Furthermore, overexpression of the ER luminal Ca(2+) sensor, STIM1, also evoked ER membrane reorganization. Although perturbation of Ca(2+) homeostasis was clearly one mechanism by which some agents induced ER membrane reorganization, influx of extracellular Na(+) but not Ca(2+) was required for ER membrane reorganization induced by apogossypol and the related BCL-2 family antagonist, TW37, in both human and yeast cells. Not only is this novel, non-canonical ER stress response evolutionary conserved but so also are aspects of the mechanism of formation of ER membrane aggregates. Thus perturbation of ionic homeostasis is important in the regulation

  10. Epigenetic Placental Programming of Preeclampsia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preeclampsia (PE) affects 8-10% of women in the US and long-term consequences include subsequent development of maternal hypertension and hypertension in offspring. As methylation patterns are established during fetal life, we focused on epigenetic alterations in DNA methylation as a plausible expla...

  11. Epigenetics of the Developing Brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Champagne, Frances A.

    2015-01-01

    Advances in understanding of the dynamic molecular interplay between DNA and its surrounding proteins suggest that epigenetic mechanisms are a critical link between early life experiences (e.g., prenatal stress, parent-offspring interactions) and long-term changes in brain and behavior. Although much of this evidence comes from animal studies,…

  12. Autism Spectrum Disorders and Epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grafodatskaya, Daria; Chung, Brian; Szatmari, Peter; Weksberg, Rosanna

    2010-01-01

    Objective: Current research suggests that the causes of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are multifactorial and include both genetic and environmental factors. Several lines of evidence suggest that epigenetics also plays an important role in ASD etiology and that it might, in fact, integrate genetic and environmental influences to dysregulate…

  13. Re: Epigenetics of Cellular Reprogramming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fehmi Narter

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available EDITORIAL COMMENT Cells have some specific molecular and physiological properties that act their functional process. However, many cells have an ability of efficient transition from one type to another. This ability is named plasticity. This process occurs due to epigenetic reprogramming that involves changes in transcription and chromatin structure. Some changes during reprogramming that have been identified in recent years as genomic demethylation (both histone and DNA, histone acetylation and loss of heterochromatin during the development of many diseases such as infertility and cancer progression. In this review, the authors focused on the latest work addressing the mechanisms surrounding the epigenetic regulation of various types of reprogramming, including somatic cell nuclear transfer, cell fusion and transcription factor- and microRNA-induced pluripotency. There are many responsible factors such as genes, cytokines, proteins, co-factors (i.e. vitamin C in this local area network. The exact mechanisms by which these changes are achieved and the detailed interplay between the players responsible, however, remain relatively unclear. In the treatment of diseases, such as infertility, urooncology, reconstructive urology, etc., epigenetic changes and cellular reprogramming will be crucial in the near future. Central to achieving that goal is a more thorough understanding of the epigenetic state of fully reprogrammed cells. By the progress of researches on this topic, new treatment modalities will be identified for these diseases.

  14. Circadian clocks, epigenetics, and cancer

    KAUST Repository

    Masri, Selma

    2015-01-01

    The interplay between circadian rhythm and cancer has been suggested for more than a decade based on the observations that shift work and cancer incidence are linked. Accumulating evidence implicates the circadian clock in cancer survival and proliferation pathways. At the molecular level, multiple control mechanisms have been proposed to link circadian transcription and cell-cycle control to tumorigenesis.The circadian gating of the cell cycle and subsequent control of cell proliferation is an area of active investigation. Moreover, the circadian clock is a transcriptional system that is intricately regulated at the epigenetic level. Interestingly, the epigenetic landscape at the level of histone modifications, DNA methylation, and small regulatory RNAs are differentially controlled in cancer cells. This concept raises the possibility that epigenetic control is a common thread linking the clock with cancer, though little scientific evidence is known to date.This review focuses on the link between circadian clock and cancer, and speculates on the possible connections at the epigenetic level that could further link the circadian clock to tumor initiation or progression.

  15. Human papillomaviruses in epigenetic regulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durzynska, Julia; Lesniewicz, Krzysztof; Poreba, Elzbieta

    Human Papillomaviruses (HPVs) are double-stranded DNA viruses, that infect epithelial cells and are etiologically involved in the development of human cancer. Today, over 200 types of human papillomaviruses are known. They are divided into low-risk and high-risk HPVs depending on their potential to induce carcinogenesis, driven by two major viral oncoproteins, E6 and E7. By interacting with cellular partners, these proteins are involved in interdependent viral and cell cycles in stratified differentiating epithelium, and concomitantly induce epigenetic changes in infected cells and those undergoing malignant transformation. E6 and E7 oncoproteins interact with and/or modulate expression of many proteins involved in epigenetic regulation, including DNA methyltransferases, histone-modifying enzymes and subunits of chromatin remodeling complexes, thereby influencing host cell transcription program. Furthermore, HPV oncoproteins modulate expression of cellular micro RNAs. Most of these epigenetic actions in a complex dynamic interplay participate in the maintenance of persistent infection, cell transformation, and development of invasive cancer by a considerable deregulation of tumor suppressor and oncogenes. In this study, we have undertaken to discuss a number of studies concerning epigenetic regulations in HPV-dependent cells and to focus on those that have biological relevance to cancer progression. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Incorporating transgenerational testing and epigenetic ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    A number of environmental chemicals have been shown to alter markers of epigenetic change. Some published multi-generation rodent studies have identified effects on F2 and greater generations after chemical exposures solely to F0 dams, but were not focused on chemical safety. We were interested in how outcomes related to epigenetic changes could be identified and incorporated into chemical testing and risk assessment. To address this question, we conducted a systematic literature review to identify transgenerational (TG) epigenetic studies in rodents. These were analyzed to characterize the methods and observed outcomes, and to evaluate strengths, limitations, and biases. Our analysis found that test substances were administered to pregnant F0 dams; endpoints assessed in F1 to F4 generation offspring included growth, puberty timing, steroid hormone levels, abdominal adiposity, organ weights, histopathology, and epigenetic biomarkers. Biases were minimized through, e.g., randomization procedures, avoiding sibling or cousin matings, and independent multiple reviews of histopathology data. However, the numbers of litters assigned to control and test groups were not always transparently reported, nested statistical analyses of data was not always utilized to address litter effects, and “blind” testing was seldom performed. Many of these studies identified chemicals or combinations of chemicals that produced TG effects and/or adult-onset diseases, but there is a

  17. The "5Rs of Reorganization": A Case Report on Service Delivery Reorganization within a Pediatric Rehabilitation Organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phoenix, Michelle; Rosenbaum, Peter; Watson, Denise; Camden, Chantal

    2016-01-01

    Pediatric rehabilitation centers constantly reorganize services to accommodate changes in funding, client needs, evidence-based practices, accountability requirements, theoretical models, and values. However, there are few service delivery models or descriptions of how organizations plan for change to guide organizations through this complex task. This case report presents the "5Rs of Reorganization," a novel process for planning service delivery reorganization projects in pediatric rehabilitation centers. The 5Rs include: 1. Recognize the need for change, 2. Reallocate resources for project management, 3. Review the reality of clients, service delivery, and the community, 4. Reconstruct reality, and 5. Report results. The implementation and outcomes of the "5Rs of Reorganization" process are described for one pediatric rehabilitation center to illustrate how use of this process led to effective service delivery reorganization planning. The resulting multi-component customized service delivery plan reflects high levels of stakeholder involvement. Principles of project management can be applied to support service delivery reorganization planning within pediatric rehabilitation centers using the "5Rs of Reorganization." Strong communication throughout the planning phase is key to developing and sharing a plan for service delivery reorganization. Communication can be supported through use of the 5R process.

  18. Epigenetics and Therapeutic Targets Mediating Neuroprotection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qureshi, Irfan A.; Mehler, Mark F.

    2015-01-01

    The rapidly evolving science of epigenetics is transforming our understanding of the nervous system in health and disease and holds great promise for the development of novel diagnostic and therapeutic approaches targeting neurological diseases. Increasing evidence suggests that epigenetic factors and mechanisms serve as important mediators of the pathogenic processes that lead to irrevocable neural injury and of countervailing homeostatic and regenerative responses. Epigenetics is, therefore, of considerable translational significance to the field of neuroprotection. In this brief review, we provide an overview of epigenetic mechanisms and highlight the emerging roles played by epigenetic processes in neural cell dysfunction and death and in resultant neuroprotective responses. PMID:26236020

  19. Epigenetic Modifications: Therapeutic Potential in Cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manisha Sachan

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetic modifications and alterations in chromatin structure and function contribute to the cumulative changes observed as normal cells undergo malignant transformation. These modifications and enzymes (DNA methyltransferases, histone deacetylases, histone methyltransferases, and demethylases related to them have been deeply studied to develop new drugs, epigenome-targeted therapies and new diagnostic tools. Epigenetic modifiers aim to restore normal epigenetic modification patterns through the inhibition of epigenetic modifier enzymes. Four of them (azacitidine, decitabine, vorinostat and romidepsin are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This article provides an overview about the known functional roles of epigenetic enzymes in cancer development.

  20. Comparative epigenetic and genetic spatial structure of the perennial herbHelleborus foetidus: Isolation by environment, isolation by distance, and functional trait divergence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrera, Carlos M; Medrano, Mónica; Bazaga, Pilar

    2017-08-16

    Epigenetic variation can play a role in local adaptation; thus, there should be associations among epigenetic variation, environmental variation, and functional trait variation across populations. This study examines these relationships in the perennial herb Helleborus foetidus (Ranunculaceae). Plants from 10 subpopulations were characterized genetically (AFLP, SSR markers), epigenetically (MSAP markers), and phenotypically (20 functional traits). Habitats were characterized using six environmental variables. Isolation-by-distance (IBD) and isolation-by-environment (IBE) patterns of genetic and epigenetic divergence were assessed, as was the comparative explanatory value of geographical and environmental distance as predictors of epigenetic, genetic, and functional differentiation. Subpopulations were differentiated genetically, epigenetically, and phenotypically. Genetic differentiation was best explained by geographical distance, while epigenetic differentiation was best explained by environmental distance. Divergence in functional traits was correlated with environmental and epigenetic distances, but not with geographical and genetic distances. Results are compatible with the hypothesis that epigenetic IBE and functional divergence reflected responses to environmental variation. Spatial analyses simultaneously considering epigenetic, genetic, phenotypic and environmental information provide a useful tool to evaluate the role of environmental features as drivers of natural epigenetic variation between populations. © 2017 Botanical Society of America.

  1. Epigenetic modifications and diabetic nephropathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marpadga A. Reddy

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Diabetic nephropathy (DN is a major complication associated with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, and a leading cause of end-stage renal disease. Conventional therapeutic strategies are not fully efficacious in the treatment of DN, suggesting an incomplete understanding of the gene regulation mechanisms involved in its pathogenesis. Furthermore, evidence from clinical trials has demonstrated a “metabolic memory” of prior exposure to hyperglycemia that continues to persist despite subsequent glycemic control. This remains a major challenge in the treatment of DN and other vascular complications. Epigenetic mechanisms such as DNA methylation, nucleosomal histone modifications, and noncoding RNAs control gene expression through regulation of chromatin structure and function and post-transcriptional mechanisms without altering the underlying DNA sequence. Emerging evidence indicates that multiple factors involved in the etiology of diabetes can alter epigenetic mechanisms and regulate the susceptibility to diabetes complications. Recent studies have demonstrated the involvement of histone lysine methylation in the regulation of key fibrotic and inflammatory genes related to diabetes complications including DN. Interestingly, histone lysine methylation persisted in vascular cells even after withdrawal from the diabetic milieu, demonstrating a potential role of epigenetic modifications in metabolic memory. Rapid advances in high-throughput technologies in the fields of genomics and epigenomics can lead to the identification of genome-wide alterations in key epigenetic modifications in vascular and renal cells in diabetes. Altogether, these findings can lead to the identification of potential predictive biomarkers and development of novel epigenetic therapies for diabetes and its associated complications.

  2. Comparative epigenomics: an emerging field with breakthrough potential to understand evolution of epigenetic regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janine E. Deakin

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetic mechanisms regulate gene expression, thereby mediating the interaction between environment, genotype and phenotype. Changes to epigenetic regulation of genes may be heritable, permitting rapid adaptation of a species to environmental cues. However, most of the current understanding of epigenetic gene regulation has been gained from studies of mice and humans, with only a limited understanding of the conservation of epigenetic mechanisms across divergent taxa. The relative ease at which genome sequence data is now obtained and the advancements made in epigenomics techniques for non-model species provides a basis for carrying out comparative epigenomic studies across a wider range of species, making it possible to start unraveling the evolution of epigenetic mechanisms. We review the current knowledge of epigenetic mechanisms obtained from studying model organisms, give an example of how comparative epigenomics using non-model species is helping to trace the evolutionary history of X chromosome inactivation in mammals and explore the opportunities to study comparative epigenomics in biological systems displaying adaptation between species, such as the immune system and sex determination.

  3. Epigenetic Determinism in Science and Society.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waggoner, Miranda R; Uller, Tobias

    2015-04-03

    The epigenetic "revolution" in science cuts across many disciplines, and it is now one of the fastest growing research areas in biology. Increasingly, claims are made that epigenetics research represents a move away from the genetic determinism that has been prominent both in biological research and in understandings of the impact of biology on society. We discuss to what extent an epigenetic framework actually supports these claims. We show that, in contrast to the received view, epigenetics research is often couched in language as deterministic as genetics research in both science and the popular press. We engage the rapidly emerging conversation about the impact of epigenetics on public discourse and scientific practice, and we contend that the notion of epigenetic determinism - or the belief that epigenetic mechanisms determine the expression of human traits and behaviors - matters for understandings of the influence of biology and society on population health.

  4. Epigenetics in Cancer: A Hematological Perspective.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maximilian Stahl

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available For several decades, we have known that epigenetic regulation is disrupted in cancer. Recently, an increasing body of data suggests epigenetics might be an intersection of current cancer research trends: next generation sequencing, immunology, metabolomics, and cell aging. The new emphasis on epigenetics is also related to the increasing production of drugs capable of interfering with epigenetic mechanisms and able to trigger clinical responses in even advanced phase patients. In this review, we will use myeloid malignancies as proof of concept examples of how epigenetic mechanisms can trigger or promote oncogenesis. We will also show how epigenetic mechanisms are related to genetic aberrations, and how they affect other systems, like immune response. Finally, we will show how we can try to influence the fate of cancer cells with epigenetic therapy.

  5. Transgenerational epigenetic inheritance: an open discussion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagy, Corina; Turecki, Gustavo

    2015-08-01

    Much controversy surrounds the idea of transgenerational epigenetics. Recent papers argue that epigenetic marks acquired through experience are passed to offspring, but as in much of the field of epigenetics, there is lack of precision in the definitions and perhaps too much eagerness to translate animal research to humans. Here, we review operational definitions of transgenerational inheritance and the processes of epigenetic programing during early development. Subsequently, based on this background, we critically examine some recent findings of studies investigating transgenerational inheritance. Finally, we discuss possible mechanisms that may explain transgenerational inheritance, including transmission of an epigenetic blueprint, which may predispose offspring to specific epigenetic patterning. Taken together, we conclude that presently, the evidence suggesting that acquired epigenetic marks are passed to the subsequent generation remains limited.

  6. Epigenetic memory of environmental organisms: a reflection of lifetime stressor exposures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirbahai, Leda; Chipman, James K

    2014-04-01

    Both genetic and epigenetic responses of organisms to environmental factors, including chemical exposures, influence adaptation, susceptibility to toxicity and biodiversity. In model organisms, it is established that epigenetic alterations, including changes to the methylome, can create a memory of the received signal. This is partly evidenced through the analysis of epigenetic differences that develop between identical twins throughout their lifetime. The epigenetic marks induce alterations to the gene expression profile, which, in addition to mediating homeostatic responses, have the potential to promote an abnormal physiology either immediately or at a later stage of development, for example leading to an adult onset of disease. Although this has been well established, epigenetic mechanisms are not considered in chemical risk assessment or utilised in the monitoring of the exposure and effects of chemicals and environmental change. In this review, epigenetic factors, specifically DNA methylation, are highlighted as mechanisms of adaptation and response to environmental factors and which, if persistent, have the potential, retrospectively, to reflect previous stress exposures. Thus, it is proposed that epigenetic "foot-printing" of organisms could identify classes of chemical contaminants to which they have been exposed throughout their lifetime. In some cases, the potential for persistent transgenerational modification of the epigenome may also inform on parental germ cell exposures. It is recommended that epigenetic mechanisms, alongside genetic mechanisms, should eventually be considered in environmental toxicity safety assessments and in biomonitoring studies. This will assist in determining the mode of action of toxicants, no observed adverse effect level and identification of biomarkers of toxicity for early detection and risk assessment in toxicology but there are critical areas that remain to be explored before this can be achieved. Copyright © 2013 The

  7. Nuclear bodies reorganize during myogenesis in vitro and are differentially disrupted by expression of FSHD-associated DUX4

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sachiko Homma

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Nuclear bodies, such as nucleoli, PML bodies, and SC35 speckles, are dynamic sub-nuclear structures that regulate multiple genetic and epigenetic processes. Additional regulation is provided by RNA/DNA handling proteins, notably TDP-43 and FUS, which have been linked to ALS pathology. Previous work showed that mouse cell line myotubes have fewer but larger nucleoli than myoblasts, and we had found that nuclear aggregation of TDP-43 in human myotubes was induced by expression of DUX4-FL, a transcription factor that is aberrantly expressed and causes pathology in facioscapulohumeral dystrophy (FSHD. However, questions remained about nuclear bodies in human myogenesis and in muscle disease. Methods We examined nucleoli, PML bodies, SC35 speckles, TDP-43, and FUS in myoblasts and myotubes derived from healthy donors and from patients with FSHD, laminin-alpha-2-deficiency (MDC1A, and alpha-sarcoglycan-deficiency (LGMD2D. We further examined how these nuclear bodies and proteins were affected by DUX4-FL expression. Results We found that nucleoli, PML bodies, and SC35 speckles reorganized during differentiation in vitro, with all three becoming less abundant in myotube vs. myoblast nuclei. In addition, though PML bodies did not change in size, both nucleoli and SC35 speckles were larger in myotube than myoblast nuclei. Similar patterns of nuclear body reorganization occurred in healthy control, MDC1A, and LGMD2D cultures, as well as in the large fraction of nuclei that did not show DUX4-FL expression in FSHD cultures. In contrast, nuclei that expressed endogenous or exogenous DUX4-FL, though retaining normal nucleoli, showed disrupted morphology of some PML bodies and most SC35 speckles and also co-aggregation of FUS with TDP-43. Conclusions Nucleoli, PML bodies, and SC35 speckles reorganize during human myotube formation in vitro. These nuclear body reorganizations are likely needed to carry out the distinct gene transcription and

  8. Metabolic and Epigenetic Coordination of T Cell and Macrophage Immunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phan, Anthony T; Goldrath, Ananda W; Glass, Christopher K

    2017-05-16

    Recognition of pathogens by innate and adaptive immune cells instructs rapid alterations of cellular processes to promote effective resolution of infection. To accommodate increased bioenergetic and biosynthetic demands, metabolic pathways are harnessed to maximize proliferation and effector molecule production. In parallel, activation initiates context-specific gene-expression programs that drive effector functions and cell fates that correlate with changes in epigenetic landscapes. Many chromatin- and DNA-modifying enzymes make use of substrates and cofactors that are intermediates of metabolic pathways, providing potential cross talk between metabolism and epigenetic regulation of gene expression. In this review, we discuss recent studies of T cells and macrophages supporting a role for metabolic activity in integrating environmental signals with activation-induced gene-expression programs through modulation of the epigenome and speculate as to how this may influence context-specific macrophage and T cell responses to infection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Epigenetics and depression: return of the repressed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalton, Victoria S; Kolshus, Erik; McLoughlin, Declan M

    2014-02-01

    Epigenetics has recently emerged as a potential mechanism by which adverse environmental stimuli can result in persistent changes in gene expression. Epigenetic mechanisms function alongside the DNA sequence to modulate gene expression and ultimately influence protein production. The current review provides an introduction and overview of epigenetics with a particular focus on preclinical and clinical studies relevant to major depressive disorder (MDD). PubMed and Web of Science databases were interrogated from January 1995 up to December 2012 using combinations of search terms, including "epigenetic", "microRNA" and "DNA methylation" cross referenced with "depression", "early life stress" and "antidepressant". There is an association between adverse environmental stimuli, such as early life stress, and epigenetic modification of gene expression. Epigenetic changes have been reported in humans with MDD and may serve as biomarkers to improve diagnosis. Antidepressant treatments appear to reverse or initiate compensatory epigenetic alterations that may be relevant to their mechanism of action. As a narrative review, the current report was interpretive and qualitative in nature. Epigenetic modification of gene expression provides a mechanism for understanding the link between long-term effects of adverse life events and the changes in gene expression that are associated with depression. Although still a developing field, in the future, epigenetic modifications of gene expression may provide novel biomarkers to predict future susceptibility and/or onset of MDD, improve diagnosis, and aid in the development of epigenetics-based therapies for depression. © 2013 Published by Elsevier B.V.

  10. The role of epigenetics in cognitive ageing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mather, Karen A; Kwok, John B; Armstrong, Nicola; Sachdev, Perminder S

    2014-11-01

    As the population is ageing, a better understanding of the underlying causes of age-related cognitive decline (cognitive ageing) is required. Epigenetic dysregulation is proposed as one of the underlying mechanisms for cognitive ageing. We review the current knowledge on epigenetics and cognitive ageing and appraise the potential of epigenetic preventative and therapeutic interventions. Articles on cognitive ageing and epigenetics in English were identified. Epigenetic dysregulation occurs with cognitive ageing, with changes in histone post-translational modifications, DNA methylation and non-coding RNA reported. However, human studies are lacking, with most being cross-sectional using peripheral blood samples. Pharmacological and lifestyle factors have the potential to change aberrant epigenetic profiles; but few studies have examined this in relation to cognitive ageing. The relationship between epigenetic modifications and cognitive ageing is only beginning to be investigated. Epigenetic dysregulation appears to be an important feature in cognitive ageing, but whether it is an epiphenomenon or a causal factor remains to be elucidated. Clarification of the relationship between epigenetic profiles of different cell types is essential and would determine whether epigenetic marks of peripheral tissues can be used as a proxy for changes occurring in the brain. The use of lifestyle and pharmacological interventions to improve cognitive performance and quality of life of older adults needs more investigation. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  11. Large extents of intensive land use limit community reorganization during climate warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliver, Tom H; Gillings, Simon; Pearce-Higgins, James W; Brereton, Tom; Crick, Humphrey Q P; Duffield, Simon J; Morecroft, Michael D; Roy, David B

    2017-06-01

    Climate change is increasingly altering the composition of ecological communities, in combination with other environmental pressures such as high-intensity land use. Pressures are expected to interact in their effects, but the extent to which intensive human land use constrains community responses to climate change is currently unclear. A generic indicator of climate change impact, the community temperature index (CTI), has previously been used to suggest that both bird and butterflies are successfully 'tracking' climate change. Here, we assessed community changes at over 600 English bird or butterfly monitoring sites over three decades and tested how the surrounding land has influenced these changes. We partitioned community changes into warm- and cold-associated assemblages and found that English bird communities have not reorganized successfully in response to climate change. CTI increases for birds are primarily attributable to the loss of cold-associated species, whilst for butterflies, warm-associated species have tended to increase. Importantly, the area of intensively managed land use around monitoring sites appears to influence these community changes, with large extents of intensively managed land limiting 'adaptive' community reorganization in response to climate change. Specifically, high-intensity land use appears to exacerbate declines in cold-adapted bird and butterfly species, and prevent increases in warm-associated birds. This has broad implications for managing landscapes to promote climate change adaptation. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Diabetes Mellitus and Epigenetic Mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bekir Engin Eser

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Diabetes Mellitus (DM is an important disease caused by insulin deficiency or insulin receptor resistance and characterized by hyperglycemia. The prevalence rate of DM is increasing rapidly worldwide and its associated complications affect the quality of life of patients adverse­ly. In addition, high medical costs for its treatment bring significant economic load on countries. Epigenetics is the reversible modifications on the genome, which lead to changes in gene expression without any alteration in the DNA sequence. Epigenetic modifications can easily be affected by environmental factors and abnormalities in these modifications have been linked to many diseases including cancer and neurodegenerative disorders. In this review, we will summarize the relationship of DM and its complications with DNA and RNA methylation, which are among the most important modifications.

  13. Epigenetic mechanisms in gastric cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gigek, Carolina Oliveira; Chen, Elizabeth Suchi; Calcagno, Danielle Queiroz; Wisnieski, Fernanda; Burbano, Rommel Rodriguez; Smith, Marilia Arruda Cardoso

    2012-06-01

    Cancer is considered one of the major health issues worldwide, and gastric cancer accounted for 8% of total cases and 10% of total deaths in 2008. Gastric cancer is considered an age-related disease, and the total number of newly diagnosed cases has been increasing as a result of the higher life expectancy. Therefore, the basic mechanisms underlying gastric tumorigenesis is worth investigation. This review provides an overview of the epigenetic mechanisms, such as DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling complex and miRNA, involved in gastric cancer. As the studies in gastric cancer continue, the mapping of an epigenome code is not far for this disease. In conclusion, an epigenetic therapy might appear in the not too distant future.

  14. Computational micromodel for epigenetic mechanisms.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Raghavan, Karthika

    2010-11-01

    Characterization of the epigenetic profile of humans since the initial breakthrough on the human genome project has strongly established the key role of histone modifications and DNA methylation. These dynamic elements interact to determine the normal level of expression or methylation status of the constituent genes in the genome. Recently, considerable evidence has been put forward to demonstrate that environmental stress implicitly alters epigenetic patterns causing imbalance that can lead to cancer initiation. This chain of consequences has motivated attempts to computationally model the influence of histone modification and DNA methylation in gene expression and investigate their intrinsic interdependency. In this paper, we explore the relation between DNA methylation and transcription and characterize in detail the histone modifications for specific DNA methylation levels using a stochastic approach.

  15. Epigenetics of Early Child Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chris eMurgatroyd

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Comprehensive clinical studies show that adverse conditions in early life can severely impact the developing brain and increase vulnerability to mood disorders later in life. During early postnatal life the brain exhibits high plasticity which allows environmental signals to alter the trajectories of rapidly developing circuits. Adversity in early life is able to shape the experience-dependent maturation of stress-regulating pathways underlying emotional functions and endocrine responses to stress, such as the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA system, leading to long-lasting altered stress responsivity during adulthood.To date, the study of gene-environment interactions in the human population has been dominated by epidemiology. However, recent research in the neuroscience field is now advancing clinical studies by addressing specifically the mechanisms by which gene-environment interactions can predispose individuals towards psychopathology. To this end, appropriate animal models are being developed in which early environmental factors can be manipulated in a controlled manner. Here we will review recent studies performed with the common aim of understanding the effects of the early environment in shaping brain development and discuss the newly developing role of epigenetic mechanisms in translating early life conditions into long-lasting changes in gene expression underpinning brain functions. Particularly, we argue that epigenetic mechanisms can mediate the gene-environment dialogue in early life and give rise to persistent epigenetic programming of adult physiology and dysfunction eventually resulting in disease. Understanding how early life experiences can give raise to lasting epigenetic memories conferring increased risk for mental disorders, how they are maintained and how they could be reversed, is increasingly becoming a focus of modern psychiatry and should pave new guidelines for timely therapeutic interventions.

  16. Chromocentre integrity and epigenetic marks

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Harničarová, Andrea; Galiová-Šustáčková, Gabriela; Legartová, Soňa; Kozubek, Stanislav; Matula, P.; Bártová, Eva

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 169, č. 1 (2010), s. 124-133 ISSN 1047-8477 R&D Projects: GA MŠk ME 919; GA MŠk(CZ) LC06027; GA MŠk(CZ) LC535 Grant - others:GA MŠk(CZ) ME919 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50040507; CEZ:AV0Z50040702 Keywords : SUV39h * histone methylation * epigenetics Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 3.497, year: 2010

  17. Methylphenidate modulates cerebral post-stroke reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tardy, Jean; Pariente, Jérémie; Leger, Anne; Dechaumont-Palacin, Sophie; Gerdelat, Angélique; Guiraud, Vincent; Conchou, Fabrice; Albucher, Jean-François; Marque, Philippe; Franceries, Xavier; Cognard, Christophe; Rascol, Olivier; Chollet, François; Loubinoux, Isabelle

    2006-11-15

    We hypothesized that a single dose of methylphenidate (MP) would modulate cerebral motor activation and behavior in patients having suffered a subcortical stroke. Eight men with a single stroke on the corticospinal tract resulting in a pure motor hemiparesia were included in a randomized, cross-over, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Patients were first evaluated 17 days after stroke onset by validated neurological scales, motor tests and fMRI (flexion/extension of the digits) after 20 mg MP or placebo. Seven days later, the patients underwent the same protocol and received the drug they had not taken at the first evaluation. Each patient was his own control. Placebo intake did not change performance. MP compared to placebo elicited a significant improvement in motor performance of the affected hand at the finger tapping test. MP induced: (1) a hyperactivation of the ipsilesional primary sensorimotor cortex including the motor hand and face areas and of the contralesional premotor cortex; (2) a hypoactivation of the ipsilesional anterior cingulum. Hyperactivation in the face motor area correlated positively with the improvement in performance. We demonstrated that the reorganized network may efficiently be targeted by the drug and that the effect of MP might partly rely on an improvement in attention/effort through cingulum modulation.

  18. Epigenetics and Epigenomics of Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yadav, Chandra Bhan; Pandey, Garima; Muthamilarasan, Mehanathan; Prasad, Manoj

    2018-01-23

    The genetic material DNA in association with histone proteins forms the complex structure called chromatin, which is prone to undergo modification through certain epigenetic mechanisms including cytosine DNA methylation, histone modifications, and small RNA-mediated methylation. Alterations in chromatin structure lead to inaccessibility of genomic DNA to various regulatory proteins such as transcription factors, which eventually modulates gene expression. Advancements in high-throughput sequencing technologies have provided the opportunity to study the epigenetic mechanisms at genome-wide levels. Epigenomic studies using high-throughput technologies will widen the understanding of mechanisms as well as functions of regulatory pathways in plant genomes, which will further help in manipulating these pathways using genetic and biochemical approaches. This technology could be a potential research tool for displaying the systematic associations of genetic and epigenetic variations, especially in terms of cytosine methylation onto the genomic region in a specific cell or tissue. A comprehensive study of plant populations to correlate genotype to epigenotype and to phenotype, and also the study of methyl quantitative trait loci (QTL) or epiGWAS, is possible by using high-throughput sequencing methods, which will further accelerate molecular breeding programs for crop improvement. Graphical Abstract.

  19. Learning epigenetic regulation from mycobacteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanjeev Khosla

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In a eukaryotic cell, the transcriptional fate of a gene is determined by the profile of the epigenetic modifications it is associated with and the conformation it adopts within the chromatin. Therefore, the function that a cell performs is dictated by the sum total of the chromatin organization and the associated epigenetic modifications of each individual gene in the genome (epigenome. As the function of a cell during development and differentiation is determined by its microenvironment, any factor that can alter this microenvironment should be able to alter the epigenome of a cell. In the study published in Nature Communications (Yaseen [2015] Nature Communications 6:8922 doi: 10.1038/ncomms9922, we show that pathogenic Mycobacterium tuberculosis has evolved strategies to exploit this pliability of the host epigenome for its own survival. We describe the identification of a methyltransferase from M. tuberculosis that functions to modulate the host epigenome by methylating a novel, non-canonical arginine, H3R42 in histone H3. In another study, we showed that the mycobacterial protein Rv2966c methylates cytosines present in non-CpG context within host genomic DNA upon infection. Proteins with ability to directly methylate host histones H3 at a novel lysine residue (H3K14 has also been identified from Legionella pnemophilia (RomA. All these studies indicate the use of non-canonical epigenetic mechanisms by pathogenic bacteria to hijack the host transcriptional machinery.

  20. Differential enrichment of TTF-I and Tip5 in the T-like promoter structures of the rDNA contribute to the epigenetic response of Cyprinus carpio during environmental adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nardocci, Gino; Simonet, Nicolas G; Navarro, Cristina; Längst, Gernot; Alvarez, Marco

    2016-08-01

    To ensure homeostasis, ectothermic organisms adapt to environmental variations through molecular mechanisms. We previously reported that during the seasonal acclimatization of the common carp Cyprinus carpio, molecular and cellular functions are reprogrammed, resulting in distinctive traits. Importantly, the carp undergoes a drastic rearrangement of nucleolar components during adaptation. This ultrastructural feature reflects a fine modulation of rRNA gene transcription. Specifically, we identified the involvement of the transcription termination factor I (TTF-I) and Tip-5 (member of nucleolar remodeling complex, NoRC) in the control of rRNA transcription. Our results suggest that differential Tip5 enrichment is essential for silencing carp ribosomal genes and that the T0 element is key for regulating the ribosomal gene during the acclimatization process. Interestingly, the expression and content of Tip5 were significantly higher in winter than in summer. Since carp ribosomal gene expression is lower in the winter than in summer, and considering that expression concomitantly occurs with nucleolar ultrastructural changes of the acclimatization process, these results indicate that Tip5 importantly contributes to silencing the ribosomal genes. In conclusion, the current study provides novel evidence on the contributions of TTF-I and NoRC in the environmental reprogramming of ribosomal genes during the seasonal adaptation process in carp.

  1. Homeland Security: Scope of the Secretary's Reorganization Authority

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Vina, Stephen R

    2005-01-01

    .... While many of the proposed changes may be effectuated administratively, some might require legislative action due to limits on reorganization authority under the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (P.L. 107-296...

  2. Prolonged reorganization of thiol-capped Au nanoparticles layered structures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarathi Kundu

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Prolonged reorganization behaviour of mono-, di-, tri- and multi-layer films of Au nanoparticles prepared by Langmuir-Blodgett method on hydrophobic Si(001 substrates have been studied by using X-ray scattering techniques. Out-of-plane study shows that although at the initial stage the reorganization occurs through the compaction of the films keeping the layered structure unchanged but finally all layered structures modify to monolayer structure. Due to this reorganization the Au density increases within the nanometer thick films. In-plane study shows that inside the reorganized films Au nanoparticles are distributed randomly and the particle size modifies as the metallic core of Au nanoparticles coalesces.

  3. 9/11 Commission Report. Reorganization, Transformation, and Information Sharing

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Walker, David M

    2004-01-01

    ...) the need for executive branch reorganization in response to the 9/11 Commission recommendations, It further addresses how to remedy problems in information sharing and analysis by transforming...

  4. Epigenetics, eh! A meeting summary of the Canadian Conference on Epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodenhiser, David I; Bérubé, Nathalie G; Mann, Mellissa R W

    2011-10-01

    In May 2011, the Canadian Conference on Epigenetics: Epigenetics Eh! was held in London, Canada. The objectives of this conference were to showcase the breadth of epigenetic research on environment and health across Canada and to provide the catalyst to develop collaborative Canadian epigenetic research opportunities, similar to existing international epigenetic initiatives in the US and Europe. With ten platform sessions and two sessions with over 100 poster presentations, this conference featured cutting-edge epigenetic research, presented by Canadian and international principal investigators and their trainees in the field of epigenetics and chromatin dynamics. An EpigenART competition included ten artists, creating a unique opportunity for artists and scientists to interact and explore their individual interpretations of this scientific discipline. The conference provided a unique venue for a significant cross-section of Canadian epigenetic researchers from diverse disciplines to meet, interact, collaborate and strategize at the national level.

  5. Epigenetics in autism and other neurodevelopmental diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyake, Kunio; Hirasawa, Takae; Koide, Tsuyoshi; Kubota, Takeo

    2012-01-01

    Autism was previously thought to be caused by environmental factors. However, genetic factors are now considered to be more contributory to the pathogenesis of autism, based on the recent findings of mutations in the genes which encode synaptic molecules associated with the communication between neurons. Epigenetic is a mechanism that controls gene expression without changing DNA sequence but by changing chromosomal histone modifications and its abnormality is associated with several neurodevelopmental diseases. Since epigenetic modifications are known to be affected by environmental factors such as nutrition, drugs and mental stress, autistic diseases are not only caused by congenital genetic defects, but may also be caused by environmental factors via epigenetic mechanism. In this chapter, we introduce autistic diseases caused by epigenetic failures and discuss epigenetic changes by environmental factors and discuss new treatments for neurodevelopmental diseases based on the recent epigenetic findings.

  6. Epigenetics, autism spectrum, and neurodevelopmental disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rangasamy, Sampathkumar; D'Mello, Santosh R; Narayanan, Vinodh

    2013-10-01

    Epigenetic marks are modifications of DNA and histones. They are considered to be permanent within a single cell during development, and are heritable across cell division. Programming of neurons through epigenetic mechanisms is believed to be critical in neural development. Disruption or alteration in this process causes an array of neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Recent studies have provided evidence for an altered epigenetic landscape in ASDs and demonstrated the central role of epigenetic mechanisms in their pathogenesis. Many of the genes linked to the ASDs encode proteins that are involved in transcriptional regulation and chromatin remodeling. In this review we highlight selected neurodevelopmental disorders in which epigenetic dysregulation plays an important role. These include Rett syndrome, fragile X syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, Angelman syndrome, and Kabuki syndrome. For each of these disorders, we discuss how advances in our understanding of epigenetic mechanisms may lead to novel therapeutic approaches.

  7. Epigenetic alterations of sedimentary rocks at deposits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Komarova, G.V.; Kondrat'eva, I.A.; Zelenova, O.I.

    1980-01-01

    Notions are explained, and technique for studying epigenetic alterations of sedimentary rocks at uranium deposits is described. Main types of epigenetic transformations and their mineralogic-geochemical characteristics are considered. Rock alterations, accompanying uranium mineralization, can be related to 2 types: oxidation and reduction. The main mineralogic-geochemical property of oxidation transformations is epigenetic limonitization. Stratal limonitization in primary grey-coloured terrigenic rocks and in epigenetically reduced (pyritized) rocks, as well as in rock, subjected to epigenetic gleying, are characterized. Reduction type of epigenetic transformations is subdivided into sulphidic and non-sulphidic (gley) subtypes. Sulphidic transformations in grey-coloured terrigenic rocks with organic substance of carbonic row, in rocks, containing organic substance of oil row, sulphide transformations of sedimentary rocks, as well as gley transformations, are considered

  8. Epigenetic medicine and fetal alcohol spectrum disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Resendiz, Marisol; Chen, Yuanyuan; Öztürk, Nail C; Zhou, Feng C

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic medicine is still in its infancy. To date, only a handful of diseases have documented epigenetic correlates upstream of gene regulation including cancer, developmental syndromes and late-onset diseases. The finding that epigenetic markers are dynamic and heterogeneous at tissue and cellular levels, combined with recent identification of a new form of functionally distinct DNA methylation has opened a wider window for investigators to pry into the epigenetic world. It is anticipated that many diseases will be elucidated through this epigenetic inquiry. In this review, we discuss the normal course of DNA methylation during development, taking alcohol as a demonstrator of the epigenetic impact of environmental factors in disease etiology, particularly the growth retardation and neurodevelopmental deficits of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. PMID:23414322

  9. Cortical reorganization after spinal cord injury: always for good?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moxon, K A; Oliviero, A; Aguilar, J; Foffani, G

    2014-12-26

    Plasticity constitutes the basis of behavioral changes as a result of experience. It refers to neural network shaping and re-shaping at the global level and to synaptic contacts remodeling at the local level, either during learning or memory encoding, or as a result of acute or chronic pathological conditions. 'Plastic' brain reorganization after central nervous system lesions has a pivotal role in the recovery and rehabilitation of sensory and motor dysfunction, but can also be "maladaptive". Moreover, it is clear that brain reorganization is not a "static" phenomenon but rather a very dynamic process. Spinal cord injury immediately initiates a change in brain state and starts cortical reorganization. In the long term, the impact of injury - with or without accompanying therapy - on the brain is a complex balance between supraspinal reorganization and spinal recovery. The degree of cortical reorganization after spinal cord injury is highly variable, and can range from no reorganization (i.e. "silencing") to massive cortical remapping. This variability critically depends on the species, the age of the animal when the injury occurs, the time after the injury has occurred, and the behavioral activity and possible therapy regimes after the injury. We will briefly discuss these dependencies, trying to highlight their translational value. Overall, it is not only necessary to better understand how the brain can reorganize after injury with or without therapy, it is also necessary to clarify when and why brain reorganization can be either "good" or "bad" in terms of its clinical consequences. This information is critical in order to develop and optimize cost-effective therapies to maximize functional recovery while minimizing maladaptive states after spinal cord injury. Copyright © 2014 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. 17 CFR 250.64 - Scope of applications for approval of reorganization plans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... approval of reorganization plans. 250.64 Section 250.64 Commodity and Securities Exchanges SECURITIES AND... Solicitations and Reorganizations § 250.64 Scope of applications for approval of reorganization plans. Any application for approval of a plan of reorganization under section 11 (49 Stat. 820; 15 U.S.C. 79k), or...

  11. Phenotypic variation in plants: Roles for epigenetics

    OpenAIRE

    Lauss, K.

    2017-01-01

    Besides genetics, also epigenetics can play a role in shaping the characteristics of a plant (phenotype). Epigenetics refers to chemical modifications of DNA and proteins associated with the DNA that can influence gene activity (the ‘epigenome’) and can be passed on through cell divisions and following generations. This thesis aimed to explore relationships between epigenome and phenotype in plants. The focus is DNA methylation, an epigenetic modification that occurs on cytosine bases in the ...

  12. Introduction to the Special Section on Epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lester, Barry M; Conradt, Elisabeth; Marsit, Carmen

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetics provides the opportunity to revolutionize our understanding of the role of genetics and the environment in explaining human behavior, although the use of epigenetics to study human behavior is just beginning. In this introduction, the authors present the basics of epigenetics in a way that is designed to make this exciting field accessible to a wide readership. The authors describe the history of human behavioral epigenetic research in the context of other disciplines and graphically illustrate the burgeoning of research in the application of epigenetic methods and principles to the study of human behavior. The role of epigenetics in normal embryonic development and the influence of biological and environmental factors altering behavior through epigenetic mechanisms and developmental programming are discussed. Some basic approaches to the study of epigenetics are reviewed. The authors conclude with a discussion of challenges and opportunities, including intervention, as the field of human behavioral epigenetics continue to grow. © 2016 The Authors. Child Development © 2016 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.

  13. Nutrition, epigenetic mechanisms, and human disease

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Maulik, Nilanjana; Maulik, Gautam

    2011-01-01

    .... The text discusses the basics of nutrigenomics and epigenetic regulation, types of nutrition influencing genetic imprinting, and the role of nutrition in modulating an individual's predisposition to disease...

  14. Epigenetic drug discovery for Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cacabelos, Ramón; Torrellas, Clara

    2014-09-01

    It is assumed that epigenetic modifications are reversible and could potentially be targeted by pharmacological and dietary interventions. Epigenetic drugs are gaining particular interest as potential candidates for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease (AD). This article covers relevant information from over 50 different epigenetic drugs including: DNA methyltransferase inhibitors; histone deacetylase inhibitors; histone acetyltransferase modulators; histone methyltransferase inhibitors; histone demethylase inhibitors; non-coding RNAs (microRNAs) and dietary regimes. The authors also review the pharmacoepigenomics and the pharmacogenomics of epigenetic drugs. The readers will gain insight into i) the classification of epigenetic drugs; ii) the mechanisms by which these drugs might be useful in AD; iii) the pharmacological properties of selected epigenetic drugs; iv) pharmacoepigenomics and the influence of epigenetic drugs on genes encoding CYP enzymes, transporters and nuclear receptors; and v) the genes associated with the pharmacogenomics of anti-dementia drugs. Epigenetic drugs reverse epigenetic changes in gene expression and might open future avenues in AD therapeutics. Unfortunately, clinical trials with this category of drugs are lacking in AD. The authors highlight the need for pharmacogenetic and pharmacoepigenetic studies to properly evaluate any efficacy and safety issues.

  15. Exploiting epigenetic vulnerabilities for cancer therapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mair, Barbara; Kubicek, Stefan; Nijman, Sebastian M B

    2014-03-01

    Epigenetic deregulation is a hallmark of cancer, and there has been increasing interest in therapeutics that target chromatin-modifying enzymes and other epigenetic regulators. The rationale for applying epigenetic drugs to treat cancer is twofold. First, epigenetic changes are reversible, and drugs could therefore be used to restore the normal (healthy) epigenetic landscape. However, it is unclear whether drugs can faithfully restore the precancerous epigenetic state. Second, chromatin regulators are often mutated in cancer, making them attractive drug targets. However, in most instances it is unknown whether cancer cells are addicted to these mutated chromatin proteins, or whether their mutation merely results in epigenetic instability conducive to the selection of secondary aberrations. An alternative incentive for targeting chromatin regulators is the exploitation of cancer-specific vulnerabilities, including synthetic lethality, caused by epigenetic deregulation. We review evidence for the hypothesis that mechanisms other than oncogene addiction are a basis for the application of epigenetic drugs, and propose future research directions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Epigenetics and its implications for Psychology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Pardo, Héctor; Pérez Álvarez, Marino

    2013-02-01

    Epigenetics is changing the widely accepted linear conception of genome function by explaining how environmental and psychological factors regulate the activity of our genome without involving changes in the DNA sequence. Research has identified epigenetic mechanisms mediating between environmental and psychological factors that contribute to normal and abnormal behavioral development. the emerging field of epigenetics as related to psychology is reviewed. the relationship between genes and behavior is reconsidered in terms of epigenetic mechanisms acting after birth and not only prenatally, as traditionally held. Behavioral epigenetics shows that our behavior could have long-term effects on the regulation of the genome function. In addition, epigenetic mechanisms would be related to psychopathology, as in the case of schizophrenia. In the latter case, it would be especially relevant to consider epigenetic factors such as life adversities (trauma, disorganized attachment, etc.) as related to its clinical manifestations, rather than genetic factors. Moreover, epigenetics implies overcoming classical dualist dichotomies such as nature-nurture, genotype-phenotype or pathogenesis-pathoplasty. In general, it can be stated that behavior and environment will finally take on a leading role in human development through epigenetic mechanisms.

  17. Epigenetic regulatory mechanisms associated with infertility

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Minocherhomji, Sheroy; Madon, Prochi F; Parikh, Firuza R

    2010-01-01

    Infertility is a complex human condition and is known to be caused by numerous factors including genetic alterations and abnormalities. Increasing evidence from studies has associated perturbed epigenetic mechanisms with spermatogenesis and infertility. However, there has been no consensus...... on whether one or a collective of these altered states is responsible for the onset of infertility. Epigenetic alterations involve changes in factors that regulate gene expression without altering the physical sequence of DNA. Understanding these altered epigenetic states at the genomic level along...... with the phenotype could further determine what possible mechanisms are involved. This paper reviews certain mechanisms of epigenetic regulation with particular emphasis on their possible role in infertility....

  18. Epigenetic Consequences of Low Birth-Weight and Preterm Birth in Adult Twins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tan, Qihua

    2018-01-01

    Adverse birth outcomes including low birth-weight and preterm birth are associated with long-term morbidity and health consequences at adult ages. Molecular mechanisms including epigenetic modification may have been involved in the adaptation to the stressful condition in peridelivery period whic...

  19. [Genetics and epigenetics in autism].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakayama, Atsuo; Masaki, Shiego; Aoki, Eiko

    2006-11-01

    Autism is a behaviorally defined syndrome characterized by impaired social interaction and communication, and restricted, stereotyped interests and behaviors. Several lines of evidence support the contention that genetic factors are a large component to autism etiology. However, in spite of vigorous genetic studies, no single causative or susceptibility gene common in autism has been identified. Thus multiple susceptibility genes in interaction are considered to account for the disorder. Furthermore, environmental risk factors can accelerate the autism development of. Recent advances in understanding the epigenetic regulation may shed light on the interaction among multiple genetic factors and environmental factors.

  20. Epigenetics and assisted reproductive technologies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pinborg, Anja; Loft, Anne; Romundstad, Liv Bente

    2016-01-01

    associated with ART techniques, but disentangling the influence of the ART procedures per se from the effect of the reproductive disease of the parents is a challenge. Epidemiological human studies have shown altered birth weight profiles in ART compared with spontaneously conceived singletons. Conception...... adolescents conceived by ART have altered lipid and glucose profiles and thereby a higher long-term risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes. This commentary describes the basic concepts of epigenetics and gives a short overview of the existing literature on the association between imprinting disorders...

  1. Epigenetic Therapy in Human Choriocarcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hisashi Narahara

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Because epigenetic alterations are believed to be involved in the repression of tumor suppressor genes and promotion of tumorigenesis in choriocarcinomas, novel compounds endowed with a histone deacetylase (HDAC inhibitory activity are an attractive therapeutic approach. HDAC inhibitors (HDACIs were able to mediate inhibition of cell growth, cell cycle arrest, apoptosis, and the expression of genes related to the malignant phenotype in choriocarcinoma cell lines. In this review, we discuss the biologic and therapeutic effects of HDACIs in treating choriocarcinoma, with a special focus on preclinical studies.

  2. Epigenetic modulators of thyroid cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Rodero, Sandra; Delgado-Álvarez, Elías; Díaz-Naya, Lucía; Martín Nieto, Alicia; Menéndez Torre, Edelmiro

    2017-01-01

    There are some well known factors involved in the etiology of thyroid cancer, including iodine deficiency, radiation exposure at early ages, or some genetic changes. However, epigenetic modulators that may contribute to development of these tumors and be helpful to for both their diagnosis and treatment have recently been discovered. The currently known changes in DNA methylation, histone modifications, and non-coding RNAs in each type of thyroid carcinoma are reviewed here. Copyright © 2016 SEEN. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  3. Epigenetics of obesity: beyond the genome sequence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cordero, Paul; Li, Jiawei; Oben, Jude A

    2015-07-01

    After the study of the gene code as a trigger for obesity, epigenetic code has appeared as a novel tool in the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of obesity, and its related comorbidities. This review summarizes the status of the epigenetic field associated with obesity, and the current epigenetic-based approaches for obesity treatment. Thanks to technical advances, novel and key obesity-associated polymorphisms have been described by genome-wide association studies, but there are limitations with their predictive power. Epigenetics is also studied for disease association, which involves decoding of the genome information, transcriptional status and later phenotypes. Obesity could be induced during adult life by feeding and other environmental factors, and there is a strong association between obesity features and specific epigenetic patterns. These patterns could be established during early life stages, and programme the risk of obesity and its comorbidities during adult life. Furthermore, recent studies have shown that DNA methylation profile could be applied as biomarkers of diet-induced weight loss treatment. High-throughput technologies, recently implemented for commercial genetic test panels, could soon lead to the creation of epigenetic test panels for obesity. Nonetheless, epigenetics is a modifiable risk factor, and different dietary patterns or environmental insights during distinct stages of life could lead to rewriting of the epigenetic profile.

  4. The placental gateway of maternal transgenerational epigenetic ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Several examples of transgenerational inheritance of epigenetic features with potential impact onembryonic development and subsequent adult life have come to light. In placental mammals, the placenta is an additional route for epigenetic information flow. This information does not go through any meiotic reprogramming ...

  5. On the origin of sperm epigenetic heterogeneity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laurentino, Sandra; Borgmann, Jennifer; Gromoll, Jörg

    2016-05-01

    The influence of epigenetic modifications on reproduction and on the function of male germ cells has been thoroughly demonstrated. In particular, aberrant DNA methylation levels in sperm have been associated with abnormal sperm parameters, lower fertilization rates and impaired embryo development. Recent reports have indicated that human sperm might be epigenetically heterogeneous and that abnormal DNA methylation levels found in the sperm of infertile men could be due to the presence of sperm populations with different epigenetic quality. However, the origin and the contribution of different germ cell types to this suspected heterogeneity remain unclear. In this review, we focus on sperm epigenetics at the DNA methylation level and its importance in reproduction. We take into account the latest developments and hypotheses concerning the functional significance of epigenetic heterogeneity coming from the field of stem cell and cancer biology and discuss the potential importance and consequences of sperm epigenetic heterogeneity for reproduction, male (in)fertility and assisted reproductive technologies (ART). Based on the current information, we propose a model in which spermatogonial stem cell variability, either intrinsic or due to external factors (such as endocrine action and environmental stimuli), can lead to epigenetic sperm heterogeneity, sperm epimutations and male infertility. The elucidation of the precise causes for epimutations, the conception of adequate therapeutic options and the development of sperm selection technologies based on epigenetic quality should be regarded as crucial to the improvement of ART outcome in the near future. © 2016 Society for Reproduction and Fertility.

  6. Epigenetics and its implications for ecotoxicology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandegehuchte, Michiel B; Janssen, Colin R

    2011-05-01

    Epigenetics is the study of mitotically or meiotically heritable changes in gene function that occur without a change in the DNA sequence. Interestingly, epigenetic changes can be triggered by environmental factors. Environmental exposure to e.g. metals, persistent organic pollutants or endocrine disrupting chemicals has been shown to modulate epigenetic marks, not only in mammalian cells or rodents, but also in environmentally relevant species such as fish or water fleas. The associated changes in gene expression often lead to modifications in the affected organism's phenotype. Epigenetic changes can in some cases be transferred to subsequent generations, even when these generations are no longer exposed to the external factor which induced the epigenetic change, as observed in a study with fungicide exposed rats. The possibility of this phenomenon in other species was demonstrated in water fleas exposed to the epigenetic drug 5-azacytidine. This way, populations can experience the effects of their ancestors' exposure to chemicals, which has implications for environmental risk assessment. More basic research is needed to assess the potential phenotypic and population-level effects of epigenetic modifications in different species and to evaluate the persistence of chemical exposure-induced epigenetic effects in multiple subsequent generations. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

  7. Epigenetics in breast and prostate cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Yanyuan; Sarkissyan, Marianna; Vadgama, Jaydutt V

    2015-01-01

    Most recent investigations into cancer etiology have identified a key role played by epigenetics. Specifically, aberrant DNA and histone modifications which silence tumor suppressor genes or promote oncogenes have been demonstrated in multiple cancer models. While the role of epigenetics in several solid tumor cancers such as colorectal cancer are well established, there is emerging evidence that epigenetics also plays a critical role in breast and prostate cancer. In breast cancer, DNA methylation profiles have been linked to hormone receptor status and tumor progression. Similarly in prostate cancer, epigenetic patterns have been associated with androgen receptor status and response to therapy. The regulation of key receptor pathways and activities which affect clinical therapy treatment options by epigenetics renders this field high priority for elucidating mechanisms and potential targets. A new set of methylation arrays are now available to screen epigenetic changes and provide the cutting-edge tools needed to perform such investigations. The role of nutritional interventions affecting epigenetic changes particularly holds promise. Ultimately, determining the causes and outcomes from epigenetic changes will inform translational applications for utilization as biomarkers for risk and prognosis as well as candidates for therapy.

  8. Epigenetics and environmental impacts in cattle

    Science.gov (United States)

    This chapter reviews the major advances in the field of epigenetics as well as the environmental impacts of cattle. Many findings from our own research endeavors related to the topic of this chapter are also introduced. The phenotypic characterization of an animal can be changed through epigenetic ...

  9. Epigenetics in mammary gland biology and cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    In the post genome era, the focus has shifted to understanding the mechanisms that regulate the interpretation of the genetic code. "Epigenetics" as a research field is taking center stage. Epigenetics is a term which is now being used throughout the scientific community in different contexts from p...

  10. Phenotypic variation in plants : Roles for epigenetics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lauss, K.

    2017-01-01

    Besides genetics, also epigenetics can play a role in shaping the characteristics of a plant (phenotype). Epigenetics refers to chemical modifications of DNA and proteins associated with the DNA that can influence gene activity (the ‘epigenome’) and can be passed on through cell divisions and

  11. Epigenetic mechanisms and drug discovery in rheumatology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tough, David F.; Prinjha, Rab K.; Tak, Paul P.

    2015-01-01

    There is a growing understanding of the epigenetic mechanisms that regulate gene expression in healthy conditions and a realisation that dysregulation of these mechanisms is an underlying factor in many human diseases. We discuss studies demonstrating that small molecule inhibitors of epigenetic

  12. Epigenetics and Liver FibrosisSummary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Moran-Salvador

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Liver fibrosis arises because prolonged injury combined with excessive scar deposition within hepatic parenchyma arising from overactive wound healing response mediated by activated myofibroblasts. Fibrosis is the common end point for any type of chronic liver injury including alcoholic liver disease, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, viral hepatitis, and cholestatic liver diseases. Although genetic influences are important, it is epigenetic mechanisms that have been shown to orchestrate many aspects of fibrogenesis in the liver. New discoveries in the field are leading toward the development of epigenetic biomarkers and targeted therapies. This review considers epigenetic mechanisms as well as recent advances in epigenetic programming in the context of hepatic fibrosis. Keywords: Liver Fibrosis, Epigenetics, DNA Methylation, Histone Modifications, Chronic Liver Disease

  13. Epigenetics reloaded: the single-cell revolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bheda, Poonam; Schneider, Robert

    2014-11-01

    Mechanistically, how epigenetic states are inherited through cellular divisions remains an important open question in the chromatin field and beyond. Defining the heritability of epigenetic states and the underlying chromatin-based mechanisms within a population of cells is complicated due to cell heterogeneity combined with varying levels of stability of these states; thus, efforts must be focused toward single-cell analyses. The approaches presented here constitute the forefront of epigenetics research at the single-cell level using classic and innovative methods to dissect epigenetics mechanisms from the limited material available in a single cell. This review further outlines exciting future avenues of research to address the significance of epigenetic heterogeneity and the contributions of microfluidics technologies to single-cell isolation and analysis. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Epigenetics: the language of the cell?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Biao; Jiang, Cizhong; Zhang, Rongxin

    2014-02-01

    Epigenetics is one of the most rapidly developing fields of biological research. Breakthroughs in several technologies have enabled the possibility of genome-wide epigenetic research, for example the mapping of human genome-wide DNA methylation. In addition, with the development of various high-throughput and high-resolution sequencing technologies, a large number of functional noncoding RNAs have been identified. Massive studies indicated that these functional ncRNA also play an important role in epigenetics. In this review, we gain inspiration from the recent proposal of the ceRNAs hypothesis. This hypothesis proposes that miRNAs act as a language of communication. Accordingly, we further deduce that all of epigenetics may functionally acquire such a unique language characteristic. In summary, various epigenetic markers may not only participate in regulating cellular processes, but they may also act as the intracellular 'language' of communication and are involved in extensive information exchanges within cell.

  15. Epigenetic epidemiology: promises for public health research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakulski, Kelly M; Fallin, M Daniele

    2014-04-01

    Epigenetic changes underlie developmental and age related biology. Promising epidemiologic research implicates epigenetics in disease risk and progression, and suggests epigenetic status depends on environmental risks as well as genetic predisposition. Epigenetics may represent a mechanistic link between environmental exposures, or genetics, and many common diseases, or may simply provide a quantitative biomarker for exposure or disease for areas of epidemiology currently lacking such measures. This great promise is balanced by issues related to study design, measurement tools, statistical methods, and biological interpretation that must be given careful consideration in an epidemiologic setting. This article describes the promises and challenges for epigenetic epidemiology, and suggests directions to advance this emerging area of molecular epidemiology. Copyright © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Epigenetic reprogramming in plant and animal development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Suhua; Jacobsen, Steven E; Reik, Wolf

    2010-10-29

    Epigenetic modifications of the genome are generally stable in somatic cells of multicellular organisms. In germ cells and early embryos, however, epigenetic reprogramming occurs on a genome-wide scale, which includes demethylation of DNA and remodeling of histones and their modifications. The mechanisms of genome-wide erasure of DNA methylation, which involve modifications to 5-methylcytosine and DNA repair, are being unraveled. Epigenetic reprogramming has important roles in imprinting, the natural as well as experimental acquisition of totipotency and pluripotency, control of transposons, and epigenetic inheritance across generations. Small RNAs and the inheritance of histone marks may also contribute to epigenetic inheritance and reprogramming. Reprogramming occurs in flowering plants and in mammals, and the similarities and differences illuminate developmental and reproductive strategies.

  17. Epigenetic mechanisms in memory and synaptic function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sultan, Faraz A; Day, Jeremy J

    2011-01-01

    Although the term ‘epigenetics’ was coined nearly seventy years ago, its critical function in memory processing by the adult CNS has only recently been appreciated. The hypothesis that epigenetic mechanisms regulate memory and behavior was motivated by the need for stable molecular processes that evade turnover of the neuronal proteome. In this article, we discuss evidence that supports a role for neural epigenetic modifications in the formation, consolidation and storage of memory. In addition, we will review the evidence that epigenetic mechanisms regulate synaptic plasticity, a cellular correlate of memory. We will also examine how the concerted action of multiple epigenetic mechanisms with varying spatiotemporal profiles influence selective gene expression in response to behavioral experience. Finally, we will suggest key areas for future research that will help elucidate the complex, vital and still mysterious, role of epigenetic mechanisms in neural function and behavior. PMID:22122279

  18. Daphnia as an Emerging Epigenetic Model Organism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kami D. M. Harris

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Daphnia offer a variety of benefits for the study of epigenetics. Daphnia’s parthenogenetic life cycle allows the study of epigenetic effects in the absence of confounding genetic differences. Sex determination and sexual reproduction are epigenetically determined as are several other well-studied alternate phenotypes that arise in response to environmental stressors. Additionally, there is a large body of ecological literature available, recently complemented by the genome sequence of one species and transgenic technology. DNA methylation has been shown to be altered in response to toxicants and heavy metals, although investigation of other epigenetic mechanisms is only beginning. More thorough studies on DNA methylation as well as investigation of histone modifications and RNAi in sex determination and predator-induced defenses using this ecologically and evolutionarily important organism will contribute to our understanding of epigenetics.

  19. Epigenetic reprogramming in the porcine germ line

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Matzen, Sara Maj Hyldig; Croxall, Nicola; Contreras, David A.

    2011-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Epigenetic reprogramming is critical for genome regulation during germ line development. Genome-wide demethylation in mouse primordial germ cells (PGC) is a unique reprogramming event essential for erasing epigenetic memory and preventing the transmission of epimutations to the next...... an increased proportion of cells in G2. CONCLUSIONS: Our study demonstrates that epigenetic reprogramming occurs in pig migratory and gonadal PGC, and establishes the window of time for the occurrence of these events. Reprogramming of histone H3K9me2 and H3K27me3 detected between E15-E21 precedes the dynamic...... DNA demethylation at imprinted loci and DNA repeats between E22-E42. Our findings demonstrate that major epigenetic reprogramming in the pig germ line follows the overall dynamics shown in mice, suggesting that epigenetic reprogramming of germ cells is conserved in mammals. A better understanding...

  20. Peromyscus as a Mammalian Epigenetic Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kimberly R. Shorter

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Deer mice (Peromyscus offer an opportunity for studying the effects of natural genetic/epigenetic variation with several advantages over other mammalian models. These advantages include the ability to study natural genetic variation and behaviors not present in other models. Moreover, their life histories in diverse habitats are well studied. Peromyscus resources include genome sequencing in progress, a nascent genetic map, and >90,000 ESTs. Here we review epigenetic studies and relevant areas of research involving Peromyscus models. These include differences in epigenetic control between species and substance effects on behavior. We also present new data on the epigenetic effects of diet on coat-color using a Peromyscus model of agouti overexpression. We suggest that in terms of tying natural genetic variants with environmental effects in producing specific epigenetic effects, Peromyscus models have a great potential.

  1. Epigenetic Alterations in Parathyroid Cancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chiara Verdelli

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Parathyroid cancers (PCas are rare malignancies representing approximately 0.005% of all cancers. PCas are a rare cause of primary hyperparathyroidism, which is the third most common endocrine disease, mainly related to parathyroid benign tumors. About 90% of PCas are hormonally active hypersecreting parathormone (PTH; consequently patients present with complications of severe hypercalcemia. Pre-operative diagnosis is often difficult due to clinical features shared with benign parathyroid lesions. Surgery provides the current best chance of cure, though persistent or recurrent disease occurs in about 50% of patients with PCas. Somatic inactivating mutations of CDC73/HRPT2 gene, encoding parafibromin, are the most frequent genetic anomalies occurring in PCas. Recently, the aberrant DNA methylation signature and microRNA expression profile have been identified in PCas, providing evidence that parathyroid malignancies are distinct entities from parathyroid benign lesions, showing an epigenetic signature resembling some embryonic aspects. The present paper reviews data about epigenetic alterations in PCas, up to now limited to DNA methylation, chromatin regulators and microRNA profile.

  2. Epigenetic Effects of Cannabis Exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szutorisz, Henrietta; Hurd, Yasmin L

    2016-04-01

    The past decade has witnessed a number of societal and political changes that have raised critical questions about the long-term impact of marijuana (Cannabis sativa) that are especially important given the prevalence of its abuse and that potential long-term effects still largely lack scientific data. Disturbances of the epigenome have generally been hypothesized as the molecular machinery underlying the persistent, often tissue-specific transcriptional and behavioral effects of cannabinoids that have been observed within one's lifetime and even into the subsequent generation. Here, we provide an overview of the current published scientific literature that has examined epigenetic effects of cannabinoids. Though mechanistic insights about the epigenome remain sparse, accumulating data in humans and animal models have begun to reveal aberrant epigenetic modifications in brain and the periphery linked to cannabis exposure. Expansion of such knowledge and causal molecular relationships could help provide novel targets for future therapeutic interventions. Copyright © 2016 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Epigenetic Mechanisms of Integrative Medicine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riya R. Kanherkar

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Since time immemorial humans have utilized natural products and therapies for their healing properties. Even now, in the age of genomics and on the cusp of regenerative medicine, the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM approaches represents a popular branch of health care. Furthermore, there is a trend towards a unified medical philosophy referred to as Integrative Medicine (IM that represents the convergence of CAM and conventional medicine. The IM model not only considers the holistic perspective of the physiological components of the individual, but also includes psychological and mind-body aspects. Justification for and validation of such a whole-systems approach is in part dependent upon identification of the functional pathways governing healing, and new data is revealing relationships between therapies and biochemical effects that have long defied explanation. We review this data and propose a unifying theme: IM’s ability to affect healing is due at least in part to epigenetic mechanisms. This hypothesis is based on a mounting body of evidence that demonstrates a correlation between the physical and mental effects of IM and modulation of gene expression and epigenetic state. Emphasis on mapping, deciphering, and optimizing these effects will facilitate therapeutic delivery and create further benefits.

  4. Exploring Low Internal Reorganization Energies for Silicene Nanoclusters

    KAUST Repository

    Pablo-Pedro, Ricardo

    2017-08-17

    High-performance materials rely on small reorganization energies to facilitate both charge separation and charge transport. Here, we performed DFT calculations to predict small reorganization energies of rectangular silicene nanoclusters with hydrogen-passivated edges denoted by H-SiNC. We observe that across all geometries, H-SiNCs feature large electron affinities and highly stabilized anionic states, indicating their potential as n-type materials. Our findings suggest that fine-tuning the size of H-SiNCs along the zigzag and armchair directions may permit the design of novel n-type electronic materials and spinctronics devices that incorporate both high electron affinities and very low internal reorganization energies.

  5. Reorganization of microfilament structure induced by ac electric fields

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cho, M.R.; Thatte, H.S.; Golan, D.E. [Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA (United States); Lee, R.C. [Univ. of Chicago, IL (United States)

    1996-11-01

    AC electric fields induce redistribution of integral membrane proteins. Cell-surface receptor redistribution does not consistently follow electric field lines and depends critically on the frequency of the applied ac electric fields, suggesting that mechanisms other than electroosmosis are involved. We hypothesized that cytoskeletal reorganization is responsible for electric field-induced cell-surface receptor redistribution, and used fluorescence video microscopy to study the reorganization of microfilaments in human hepatoma (Hep3B) cells exposed to low-frequency electric fields ranging in strength from 25 mV/cm to 20 V/cm (peak to peak). The frequency of the applied electric field was varied from 1 to 120 Hz and the field exposure duration from 1 to 60 min. In control cells, cytoplasmic microfilaments were aligned in the form of continuous parallel cables along the longitudinal axis of the cell. Exposure of cells to ac electric fields induced alterations in microfilament structure in a manner that depended on the frequency of the applied field. A 1 or 10 Hz ac field caused microfilament reorganization from continuous, aligned cable structures to discontinuous globular patches. In contrast, the structure of microfilaments in cells exposed to 20-120 Hz electric fields did not offer from that in control cells. The extent of microfilament reorganization increased nonlinearly with the electric field strength. The characteristic time for microfilament reorganization in cells exposed to a 1 Hz, 20 V/cm electric field was {approx} 5 min. Applied ac electric fields could initiate signal transduction cascades, which in turn cause reorganization of cytoskeletal structures. 39 refs., 5 figs., 1 tab.

  6. Extending Injury- and Disease-Resistant CNS Phenotypes by Repetitive Epigenetic Conditioning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey M. Gidday

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Significant reductions in the extent of acute injury in the CNS can be achieved by exposure to different preconditioning stimuli, but the duration of the induced protective phenotype is typically short-lasting, and thus is deemed as limiting its clinical applicability. Extending the period over which such adaptive epigenetic changes persist – in effect, expanding conditioning’s therapeutic window – would significantly broaden the potential applications of such a treatment approach in patients. The frequency of the conditioning stimulus may hold the key. While transient (1-3 days protection against CNS ischemic injury is well established preclinically following a single preconditioning stimulus, repetitively presenting preconditioning stimuli extends the duration of ischemic tolerance by many weeks. Moreover, repetitive intermittent postconditioning enhances postischemic recovery metrics and improves long-term survival. Intermittent conditioning is also efficacious for preventing or delaying injury in preclinical models of chronic neurodegenerative disease, and for promoting long-lasting functional improvements in a number of other pathologies as well. Although the detailed mechanisms underlying these protracted kinds of neuroplasticity remain largely unstudied, accumulating empirical evidence supports the contention that all of these adaptive phenotypes are epigenetically mediated. Going forward, additional preclinical demonstrations of the ability to induce sustained beneficial phenotypes that reduce the burden of acute and chronic neurodegeneration, and experimental interrogations of the regulatory constructs responsible for these epigenetic responses, will accelerate the identification of not only efficacious, but practical, adaptive epigenetics-based treatments for individuals with neurological disease.

  7. Multi-layered epigenetic mechanisms contribute to transcriptional memory in T lymphocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Jennifer; McCuaig, Robert; Tu, Wen Juan; Hardy, Kristine; Rao, Sudha

    2015-05-06

    Immunological memory is the ability of the immune system to respond more rapidly and effectively to previously encountered pathogens, a key feature of adaptive immunity. The capacity of memory T cells to "remember" previous cellular responses to specific antigens ultimately resides in their unique patterns of gene expression. Following re-exposure to an antigen, previously activated genes are transcribed more rapidly and robustly in memory T cells compared to their naïve counterparts. The ability for cells to remember past transcriptional responses is termed "adaptive transcriptional memory". Recent global epigenome studies suggest that epigenetic mechanisms are central to establishing and maintaining transcriptional memory, with elegant studies in model organisms providing tantalizing insights into the epigenetic programs that contribute to adaptive immunity. These epigenetic mechanisms are diverse, and include not only classical acetylation and methylation events, but also exciting and less well-known mechanisms involving histone structure, upstream signalling pathways, and nuclear localisation of genomic regions. Current global health challenges in areas such as tuberculosis and influenza demand not only more effective and safer vaccines, but also vaccines for a wider range of health priorities, including HIV, cancer, and emerging pathogens such as Ebola. Understanding the multi-layered epigenetic mechanisms that underpin the rapid recall responses of memory T cells following reactivation is a critical component of this development pathway.

  8. Workplace Re-organization and Changes in Physiological Stress Markers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carlsson, Rikke Hinge; Hansen, Åse Marie; Kristiansen, Jesper

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate changes in physiological stress markers as a consequence of workplace reorganization. Moreover, we aimed to investigate changes in the psychosocial work environment (job strain, effortreward imbalance (ERI), in psychological distress (stress symptoms...... and questionnaire data was in 2006 and 2008, and in this sub-study we included 359 participants. To reflect stress reactions of the autonomic nervous system, the endocrine system and the immune system, we included 13 physiological markers. We observed significant change in several physiological stress markers...... reorganization and changes in several physiological stress markers. However, these changes could not be explained by a significant change in psychological distress....

  9. The reorganization of the Russian hydrocarbons industry: an overview

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Locatelli, C.

    1995-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to present the main guidelines for the reorganization of the Russian hydrocarbon industry. Specifically, it focuses on the economic conditions concerning the constitution of Russian oil companies in an uncertain environment. In Russia, one of the main problems is to create autonomous energy enterprises. The main conclusion is that up to now the reorganization has been essentially juridical, connected with the constitution of joint stock companies. From an economic point of view, the organizational model behind these joint stock companies is not very well defined and lacks clearly defined coordination mechanisms. (author)

  10. Highly Dynamic Host Actin Reorganization around Developing Plasmodium Inside Hepatocytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomes-Santos, Carina S. S.; Itoe, Maurice A.; Afonso, Cristina; Henriques, Ricardo; Gardner, Rui; Sepúlveda, Nuno; Simões, Pedro D.; Raquel, Helena; Almeida, António Paulo; Moita, Luis F.; Frischknecht, Friedrich; Mota, Maria M.

    2012-01-01

    Plasmodium sporozoites are transmitted by Anopheles mosquitoes and infect hepatocytes, where a single sporozoite replicates into thousands of merozoites inside a parasitophorous vacuole. The nature of the Plasmodium-host cell interface, as well as the interactions occurring between these two organisms, remains largely unknown. Here we show that highly dynamic hepatocyte actin reorganization events occur around developing Plasmodium berghei parasites inside human hepatoma cells. Actin reorganization is most prominent between 10 to 16 hours post infection and depends on the actin severing and capping protein, gelsolin. Live cell imaging studies also suggest that the hepatocyte cytoskeleton may contribute to parasite elimination during Plasmodium development in the liver. PMID:22238609

  11. Time to reorganize federal Earth system science and technology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kisslinger, Carl

    My usual reaction to plans to reorganize activities in the federal government is that these are the last resort of a bureaucrat who is faced with a tough problem and has no idea how to solve it. However, this may be the time to consider seriously a reorganization that would assemble key elements of Earth-oriented science and technology into a single federal agency. This is not a new idea, as proposals to achieve this goal have been formulated in the past and wiring diagrams for a new agency have been developed. These proposals have faded away in the face of resistance to substantial structural change that characterizes the federal bureaucracy.

  12. Prostate cancer epigenetics and its clinical implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Srinivasan Yegnasubramanian

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Normal cells have a level of epigenetic programming that is superimposed on the genetic code to establish and maintain their cell identity and phenotypes. This epigenetic programming can be thought as the architecture, a sort of cityscape, that is built upon the underlying genetic landscape. The epigenetic programming is encoded by a complex set of chemical marks on DNA, on histone proteins in nucleosomes, and by numerous context-specific DNA, RNA, protein interactions that all regulate the structure, organization, and function of the genome in a given cell. It is becoming increasingly evident that abnormalities in both the genetic landscape and epigenetic cityscape can cooperate to drive carcinogenesis and disease progression. Large-scale cancer genome sequencing studies have revealed that mutations in genes encoding the enzymatic machinery for shaping the epigenetic cityscape are among the most common mutations observed in human cancers, including prostate cancer. Interestingly, although the constellation of genetic mutations in a given cancer can be quite heterogeneous from person to person, there are numerous epigenetic alterations that appear to be highly recurrent, and nearly universal in a given cancer type, including in prostate cancer. The highly recurrent nature of these alterations can be exploited for development of biomarkers for cancer detection and risk stratification and as targets for therapeutic intervention. Here, we explore the basic principles of epigenetic processes in normal cells and prostate cancer cells and discuss the potential clinical implications with regards to prostate cancer biomarker development and therapy.

  13. Epigenetic Pathways of Oncogenic Viruses: Therapeutic Promises.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Araby, Amr M; Fouad, Abdelrahman A; Hanbal, Amr M; Abdelwahab, Sara M; Qassem, Omar M; El-Araby, Moustafa E

    2016-02-01

    Cancerous transformation comprises different events that are both genetic and epigenetic. The ultimate goal for such events is to maintain cell survival and proliferation. This transformation occurs as a consequence of different features such as environmental and genetic factors, as well as some types of infection. Many viral infections are considered to be causative agents of a number of different malignancies. To convert normal cells into cancerous cells, oncogenic viruses must function at the epigenetic level to communicate with their host cells. Oncogenic viruses encode certain epigenetic factors that lead to the immortality and proliferation of infected cells. The epigenetic effectors produced by oncogenic viruses constitute appealing targets to prevent and treat malignant diseases caused by these viruses. In this review, we highlight the importance of epigenetic reprogramming for virus-induced oncogenesis, with special emphasis on viral epigenetic oncoproteins as therapeutic targets. The discovery of molecular components that target epigenetic pathways, especially viral factors, is also discussed. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  14. Epigenetics in cancer: Fundamentals and Beyond.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biswas, Subhankar; Rao, C Mallikarjuna

    2017-05-01

    Activation of oncogenes or the deactivation of tumor suppressor genes has long been established as the fundamental mechanism leading towards carcinogenesis. Although this age old axiom is vastly accurate, thorough study over the last 15years has given us unprecedented information on the involvement of epigenetic in cancer. Various biochemical pathways that are essential towards tumorigenesis are regulated by the epigenetic phenomenons like remodeling of nucleosome by histone modifications, DNA methylation and miRNA mediated targeting of various genes. Moreover the presence of mutations in the genes controlling the epigenetic players has further strengthened the association of epigenetics in cancer. This merger has opened up newer avenues for targeted anti-cancer drug therapy with numerous pharmaceutical industries focusing on expanding their research and development pipeline with epigenetic drugs. The information provided here elaborates the elementary phenomena of the various epigenetic regulators and discusses their alteration associated with the development of cancer. We also highlight the recent developments in epigenetic drugs combining preclinical and clinical data to signify this evolving field in cancer research. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Epigenetic changes in solid and hematopoietic tumors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toyota, Minoru; Issa, Jean-Pierre J

    2005-10-01

    There are three connected molecular mechanisms of epigenetic cellular memory in mammalian cells: DNA methylation, histone modifications, and RNA interference. The first two have now been firmly linked to neoplastic transformation. Hypermethylation of CpG-rich promoters triggers local histone code modifications resulting in a cellular camouflage mechanism that sequesters gene promoters away from transcription factors and results in stable silencing. This normally restricted mechanism is ubiquitously used in cancer to silence hundreds of genes, among which some critically contribute to the neoplastic phenotype. Virtually every pathway important to cancer formation is affected by this process. Methylation profiling of human cancers reveals tissue-specific epigenetic signatures, as well as tumor-specific signatures, reflecting in particular the presence of epigenetic instability in a subset of cancers affected by the CpG island methylator phenotype. Generally, methylation patterns can be traced to a tissue-specific, proliferation-dependent accumulation of aberrant promoter methylation in aging tissues, a process that can be accelerated by chronic inflammation and less well-defined mechanisms including, possibly, diet and genetic predisposition. The epigenetic machinery can also be altered in cancer by specific lesions in epigenetic effector genes, or by aberrant recruitment of these genes by mutant transcription factors and coactivators. Epigenetic patterns are proving clinically useful in human oncology via risk assessment, early detection, and prognostic classification. Pharmacologic manipulation of these patterns-epigenetic therapy-is also poised to change the way we treat cancer in the clinic.

  16. Epigenetic and disease targets by polyphenols.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Min-Hsiung; Lai, Ching-Shu; Wu, Jia-Ching; Ho, Chi-Tang

    2013-01-01

    An epigenetic change is defined as an alteration in gene expression that does not involve a change in the DNA sequence. Epigenetic modifications, including DNA methylation, histone modification (acetylation, methylation and phosphorylation) and miRNA, are critical for regulating developmental events. However, aberrant epigenetic mechanisms may lead to pathological consequences such as cardiovascular disease (CAD), neurodegenerative disease, obesity, metabolic disorder, bone and skeletal diseases and various cancers. Given that epigenetic modifications are heritable and reversible, in contrast to genetic changes, they have been identified as promising targets for disease prevention strategies. Over the past few decades, polyphenols, which are widely present in foods such as fruits and vegetables, have been shown to exhibit a broad spectrum of biological activities for human health. Polyphenols reverse adverse epigenetic regulation by altering DNA methylation and histone modification, and they modulate microRNA expression or directly interact with enzymes that result in the reactivation of silenced tumor suppressor genes or the inactivation of oncogenes. Therefore, dietary polyphenol- targeted epigenetics becomes an attractive approach for disease prevention and intervention. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge and underlying mechanisms of the most common dietary polyphenols and their influence on major epigenetic mechanisms associated with disease intervention.

  17. The Epigenetic Paradox of Pluripotent ES Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Festuccia, Nicola; Gonzalez, Inma; Navarro, Pablo

    2017-05-19

    The propagation and maintenance of gene expression programs are at the foundation of the preservation of cell identity. A large and complex set of epigenetic mechanisms enables the long-term stability and inheritance of transcription states. A key property of authentic epigenetic regulation is being independent from the instructive signals used for its establishment. This makes epigenetic regulation, particularly epigenetic silencing, extremely robust and powerful to lock regulatory states and stabilise cell identity. In line with this, the establishment of epigenetic silencing during development restricts cell potency and maintains the cell fate choices made by transcription factors (TFs). However, how more immature cells that have not yet established their definitive fate maintain their transitory identity without compromising their responsiveness to signalling cues remains unclear. A paradigmatic example is provided by pluripotent embryonic stem (ES) cells derived from a transient population of cells of the blastocyst. Here, we argue that ES cells represent an interesting "epigenetic paradox": even though they are captured in a self-renewing state characterised by extremely efficient maintenance of their identity, which is a typical manifestation of robust epigenetic regulation, they seem not to heavily rely on classical epigenetic mechanisms. Indeed, self-renewal strictly depends on the TFs that previously instructed their undifferentiated identity and relies on a particular signalling-dependent chromatin state where repressive chromatin marks play minor roles. Although this "epigenetic paradox" may underlie their exquisite responsiveness to developmental cues, it suggests that alternative mechanisms to faithfully propagate gene regulatory states might be prevalent in ES cells. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  18. Epigenetics: the link between nature and nurture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tammen, Stephanie A; Friso, Simonetta; Choi, Sang-Woon

    2013-01-01

    While the eukaryotic genome is the same throughout all somatic cells in an organism, there are specific structures and functions that discern one type of cell from another. These differences are due to the cell's unique gene expression patterns that are determined during cellular differentiation. Interestingly, these cell-specific gene expression patterns can be affected by an organism's environment throughout its lifetime leading to phenotypical changes that have the potential of altering risk of some diseases. Both cell-specific gene expression signatures and environment mediated changes in expression patterns can be explained by a complex network of modifications to the DNA, histone proteins and degree of DNA packaging called epigenetic marks. Several areas of research have formed to study these epigenetic modifications, including DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling and microRNA (miRNA). The original definition of epigenetics incorporates inheritable but reversible phenomena that affect gene expression without altering base pairs. Even though not all of the above listed epigenetic traits have demonstrated heritability, they can all alter gene transcription without modification to the underlying genetic sequence. Because these epigenetic patterns can also be affected by an organism's environment, they serve as an important bridge between life experiences and phenotypes. Epigenetic patterns may change throughout one's lifespan, by an early life experience, environmental exposure or nutritional status. Epigenetic signatures influenced by the environment may determine our appearance, behavior, stress response, disease susceptibility, and even longevity. The interaction between types of epigenetic modifications in response to environmental factors and how environmental cues affect epigenetic patterns will further elucidate how gene transcription can be affectively altered. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Genome-wide analysis of differential transcriptional and epigenetic variability across human immune cell types

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ecker, Simone; Chen, Lu; Pancaldi, Vera

    2017-01-01

    Background: A healthy immune system requires immune cells that adapt rapidly to environmental challenges. This phenotypic plasticity can be mediated by transcriptional and epigenetic variability. Results: We apply a novel analytical approach to measure and compare transcriptional and epigenetic....... Conclusions: Our data highlight the importance of transcriptional and epigenetic variability for the key role of neutrophils as the first responders to inflammatory stimuli. We provide a resource to enable further functional studies into the plasticity of immune cells, which can be accessed from: http...... to be implicated in key immune pathways and are associated with cellular properties and environmental exposure. We also observe increased sex-specific gene expression differences in neutrophils. Neutrophil-specific DNA methylation hypervariable sites are enriched at dynamic chromatin regions and active enhancers...

  20. Erwin Schroedinger, Francis Crick and epigenetic stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogryzko, Vasily V

    2008-04-17

    Schroedinger's book 'What is Life?' is widely credited for having played a crucial role in development of molecular and cellular biology. My essay revisits the issues raised by this book from the modern perspective of epigenetics and systems biology. I contrast two classes of potential mechanisms of epigenetic stability: 'epigenetic templating' and 'systems biology' approaches, and consider them from the point of view expressed by Schroedinger. I also discuss how quantum entanglement, a nonclassical feature of quantum mechanics, can help to address the 'problem of small numbers' that led Schroedinger to promote the idea of a molecular code-script for explaining the stability of biological order.

  1. Design of small-molecule epigenetic modulators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pachaiyappan, Boobalan

    2013-01-01

    The field of epigenetics has expanded rapidly to reveal multiple new targets for drug discovery. The functional elements of the epigenomic machinery can be catagorized as writers, erasers and readers, and together these elements control cellular gene expression and homeostasis. It is increasingly clear that aberrations in the epigenome can underly a variety of diseases, and thus discovery of small molecules that modulate the epigenome in a specific manner is a viable approach to the discovery of new therapeutic agents. In this Digest, the components of epigenetic control of gene expression will be briefly summarized, and efforts to identify small molecules that modulate epigenetic processes will be described. PMID:24300735

  2. Erwin Schroedinger, Francis Crick and epigenetic stability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ogryzko Vasily V

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Schroedinger's book 'What is Life?' is widely credited for having played a crucial role in development of molecular and cellular biology. My essay revisits the issues raised by this book from the modern perspective of epigenetics and systems biology. I contrast two classes of potential mechanisms of epigenetic stability: 'epigenetic templating' and 'systems biology' approaches, and consider them from the point of view expressed by Schroedinger. I also discuss how quantum entanglement, a nonclassical feature of quantum mechanics, can help to address the 'problem of small numbers' that led Schroedinger to promote the idea of a molecular code-script for explaining the stability of biological order.

  3. Bookmarking the genome: maintenance of epigenetic information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaidi, Sayyed K; Young, Daniel W; Montecino, Martin; van Wijnen, Andre J; Stein, Janet L; Lian, Jane B; Stein, Gary S

    2011-05-27

    Mitotic inheritance of gene function is obligatory to sustain biological control. Emerging evidence suggests that epigenetic mechanisms are linked to transmission of cell fate, lineage commitment, and maintenance of cellular phenotype in progeny cells. Mechanisms of epigenetic memory include gene silencing by DNA methylation, transcriptional regulation by histone modifications, regulation of gene expression by noncoding small RNA molecules, and retention of regulatory machinery on target gene loci for activation and repression. We will focus on the regulatory implications of epigenetic memory for physiological control and for the onset and progression of disease.

  4. Epigenetic variation during the adult lifespan

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Talens, Rudolf P; Christensen, Kaare; Putter, Hein

    2012-01-01

    The accumulation of epigenetic changes was proposed to contribute to the age-related increase in the risk of most common diseases. In this study on 230 monozygotic twin pairs (MZ pairs), aged 18-89 years, we investigated the occurrence of epigenetic changes over the adult lifespan. Using mass......-related increase in methylation variation was generally attributable to unique environmental factors, except for CRH, for which familial factors may play a more important role. In conclusion, sustained epigenetic differences arise from early adulthood to old age and contribute to an increasing discordance of MZ...

  5. Ancient evolutionary origins of epigenetic regulation associated with posttraumatic stress disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Levent eSipahi

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetic marks, including DNA methylation, are modifiable molecular factors that may underlie mental disorders, especially responses to trauma, including the development of and resilience to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD. Previous work has identified differential DNA methylation at CpG dinucleotide sites genomewide between trauma exposed individuals with and without PTSD, suggesting a role for epigenetic potential – the capacity to epigenetically regulate behavior and physiology in response to lived experiences. The human species is characterized by an increased period of adaptive plasticity during brain development. The evolutionary history of epigenetic potential in relation to adaptive plasticity is currently unknown. Using phylogenetic methods and functional annotation analyses, we trace the evolution of over 7,000 CpG dinucleotides, including 203 associated with PTSD, during the descent of humans in during mammalian evolution and characterize the biological significance of this evolution. We demonstrate that few (7% PTSD-associated CpG sites are unique to humans, while the vast majority of sites have deep evolutionary origins: 73% and 93% were unambiguously present in the last common ancestor of humans/orangutans and humans/chimpanzees, respectively. Genes proximal to evolved PTSD-associated CpG sites revealed significant enrichment for immune function during recent human evolution and regulation of gene expression during more ancient periods of human evolution. Additionally, 765 putative transcription factor binding sites (TFBS were identified that overlap with PTSD-associated CpG sites. Elucidation of the evolutionary history of PTSD-associated CpG sites may provide insights into the function and origin of epigenetic potential in trauma responses, generally, and PTSD, specifically. The human capacity to respond to trauma with stable physiologic and behavioral changes may be due to epigenetic potentials that are shared among many

  6. Epigenetic Matters: The Link between Early Nutrition, Microbiome, and Long-term Health Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavia Indrio

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetic modifications are among the most important mechanisms by which environmental factors can influence early cellular differentiation and create new phenotypic traits during pregnancy and within the neonatal period without altering the deoxyribonucleic acid sequence. A number of antenatal and postnatal factors, such as maternal and neonatal nutrition, pollutant exposure, and the composition of microbiota, contribute to the establishment of epigenetic changes that can not only modulate the individual adaptation to the environment but also have an influence on lifelong health and disease by modifying inflammatory molecular pathways and the immune response. Postnatal intestinal colonization, in turn determined by maternal flora, mode of delivery, early skin-to-skin contact and neonatal diet, leads to specific epigenetic signatures that can affect the barrier properties of gut mucosa and their protective role against later insults, thus potentially predisposing to the development of late-onset inflammatory diseases. The aim of this review is to outline the epigenetic mechanisms of programming and development acting within early-life stages and to examine in detail the role of maternal and neonatal nutrition, microbiota composition, and other environmental factors in determining epigenetic changes and their short- and long-term effects.

  7. Epigenetics?DNA-Based Mirror of our Environment?

    OpenAIRE

    Cooney, Craig A.

    2007-01-01

    Epigenetics affects health, appearance and behavior and propagates mammalian phenotypes across generations. Nutrients, drugs and behavior can all direct changes in epigenetics. In at least some cases, these directed changes are propagated across generations. This range of influences on epigenetics suggests that epigenetics is highly interactive with the environment. Changes in the environment may regularly change epigenetics and influence our future responses to the environment. The current r...

  8. Nucleolar Reorganization Upon Site-Specific Double-Strand Break Induction: DNA Repair and Epigenetics of Ribosomal Genes

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Franěk, Michal; Kovaříková, Alena; Bártová, Eva; Kozubek, Stanislav

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 64, č. 11 (2016), s. 669-686 ISSN 0722-186X R&D Projects: GA ČR GBP302/12/G157; GA ČR GA13-07822S Institutional support: RVO:68081707 Keywords : polymerase-i transcription * damage response * rna-transcription Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics

  9. Challenges Facing Military Organizational Cultural Reform: A study of the 2004 Air Force Materiel Command Reorganization

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Mikulcik, Joy D; Macola, Carolyn M; Daeger, Kimberly E; Thal, Jr, Alfred E

    2006-01-01

    ... (AFMC) reorganization initiated in 2004. The purpose of this study is threefold, 1) to determine if the 2004 AFMC Product Center reorganization has met General Martin's four intended objectives, (2...

  10. Planning for Success: Successful Implementation of Middle Level Reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williamson, Ronald; Johnston, J. Howard

    Drawing on the experience of public schools in Ann Arbor, Michigan, this document details a planning model and process of middle level reorganization. Following an examination of the impetus for change and how recent changes in the nation's economy, demographics, and family structure have shaped the context for educational change, collaborative…

  11. Expediting Scientific Data Analysis with Reorganization of Data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Byna, Surendra; Wu, Kesheng

    2013-08-19

    Data producers typically optimize the layout of data files to minimize the write time. In most cases, data analysis tasks read these files in access patterns different from the write patterns causing poor read performance. In this paper, we introduce Scientific Data Services (SDS), a framework for bridging the performance gap between writing and reading scientific data. SDS reorganizes data to match the read patterns of analysis tasks and enables transparent data reads from the reorganized data. We implemented a HDF5 Virtual Object Layer (VOL) plugin to redirect the HDF5 dataset read calls to the reorganized data. To demonstrate the effectiveness of SDS, we applied two parallel data organization techniques: a sort-based organization on a plasma physics data and a transpose-based organization on mass spectrometry imaging data. We also extended the HDF5 data access API to allow selection of data based on their values through a query interface, called SDS Query. We evaluated the execution time in accessing various subsets of data through existing HDF5 Read API and SDS Query. We showed that reading the reorganized data using SDS is up to 55X faster than reading the original data.

  12. SUPPLY REORGANIZATION IN THE SOUTHERN POLAND POWER CONCERN

    OpenAIRE

    Janusz Grabara

    2008-01-01

    The paper presents problems of procurement and supply materials to power plants in case of merger of a few plant in one power concern. The author present the analysis of present situation and proposals of supply reorganization considering technical and organizational problems.

  13. Connectome Reorganization Associated With Surgical Outcome in Temporal Lobe Epilepsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Gong-Jun; Zhang, Zhiqiang; Xu, Qiang; Wei, Wei; Wang, Jue; Wang, Zhengge; Yang, Fang; Sun, Kangjian; Jiao, Qing; Liao, Wei; Lu, Guangming

    2015-10-01

    To identify the distinct pattern of anatomical network reorganization in surgically refractory mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (MTLE) patients using a longitudinal design. We collected longitudinal diffusion-weighted images of 19 MTLE patients before and after anterior temporal lobectomy. Patients were classified as seizure-free (SF) or nonseizure-free (NSF) at least 1 year after surgery. We constructed whole-brain anatomical networks derived from white matter tractography and evaluated network connectivity measures by graph theoretical analysis. The reorganization trajectories of network measures in SF and NSF patients were investigated by two-way mixed analysis of variance, with factors "group" (SF vs NSF) and "treatment" (presurgery vs postsurgery). Widespread brain structures showed opposite reorganization trajectories in FS and NSF groups (interaction effect). Most of them showed group difference before surgery and then converge after surgery, suggesting that surgery remodeled these structures into a similar status. Conversly, contralateral amygdala-planum-temporale and thalamic-parietal tracts showed higher connectivity strength in NSF than in SF patients after surgery, indicating maladaptive neuroplastic responses to surgery in NSF patients. Our findings suggest that surgical outcomes are associated not only with the preoperative pattern of anatomical connectivity, but also with connectome reconfiguration following surgery. The reorganization of contralateral temporal lobe and corticothalamic tracts may be particularly important for seizure control in MTLE.

  14. Colonial Administrative Reorganizations and Inter-Group Relations ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This paper documents the administrative changes since Nupe times with emphasis on the British colonial administrative reorganization in O'kunland, a politically segmentry society. Its context is the implications of the administrative restructuring on inter-group relations in the area. The objective of creating a larger polity out ...

  15. Reorganization of AECL and the future marketing program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Donnelly, James

    Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. Engineering Co. has been reorganized to support the new emphasis on foreign sales of CANDU reactors. Much has been learned from reactor sales to Argentina, Korea, and Romania, but Canada needs to sell one 600 MWe reactor a year in order to avoid a decline in its nuclear industry. (LL)

  16. Dubbing SAGA unveils new epigenetic crosstalk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pijnappel, W W M Pim; Timmers, H Th Marc

    2008-02-01

    In a recent issue of Molecular Cell, two independent studies (Zhang et al., 2008; Zhao et al., 2008) provide compelling evidence that targeted deubiquitylation of histones is intimately linked to transcription activation, epigenetic regulation, and cancer progression.

  17. Epigenetics in radiotherapy: Where are we heading?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smits, Kim M.; Melotte, Veerle; Niessen, Hanneke E.C.; Dubois, Ludwig; Oberije, Cary; Troost, Esther G.C.; Starmans, Maud H.W.; Boutros, Paul C.; Vooijs, Marc; Engeland, Manon van; Lambin, Philippe

    2014-01-01

    Radiotherapy is an important component of anti-cancer treatment. However, not all cancer patients respond to radiotherapy, and with current knowledge clinicians are unable to predict which patients are at high risk of recurrence after radiotherapy. There is therefore an urgent need for biomarkers to guide clinical decision-making. Although the importance of epigenetic alterations is widely accepted, their application as biomarkers in radiotherapy has not been studied extensively. In addition, it has been suggested that radiotherapy itself introduces epigenetic alterations. As epigenetic alterations can potentially be reversed by drug treatment, they are interesting candidate targets for anticancer therapy or radiotherapy sensitizers. The application of demethylating drugs or histone deacetylase inhibitors to sensitize patients for radiotherapy has been studied in vitro, in vivo as well as in clinical trials with promising results. This review describes the current knowledge on epigenetics in radiotherapy

  18. Epigenetic control of the tumor microenvironment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marks, David L; Olson, Rachel LO; Fernandez-Zapico, Martin E

    2016-01-01

    Stromal cells of the tumor microenvironment have been shown to play important roles in both supporting and limiting cancer growth. The altered phenotype of tumor-associated stromal cells (fibroblasts, immune cells, endothelial cells etc.) is proposed to be mainly due to epigenetic dysregulation of gene expression; however, only limited studies have probed the roles of epigenetic mechanisms in the regulation of stromal cell function. We review recent studies demonstrating how specific epigenetic mechanisms (DNA methylation and histone post-translational modification-based gene expression regulation, and miRNA-mediated translational regulation) drive aspects of stromal cell phenotype, and discuss the implications of these findings for treatment of malignancies. We also summarize the effects of epigenetic mechanism-targeted drugs on stromal cells and discuss the consideration of the microenvironment response in attempts to use these drugs for cancer treatment. PMID:27700179

  19. Translational Perspective on Epigenetics in Cardiovascular Disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Harst, Pim; de Windt, Leon J.; Chambers, John C.

    2017-01-01

    A plethora of environmental and behavioral factors interact, resulting in changes in gene expression and providing a basis for the development and progression of cardiovascular diseases. Heterogeneity in gene expression responses among cells and individuals involves epigenetic mechanisms. Advancing

  20. The epigenetic paradigm in periodontitis pathogenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vamsi Lavu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Epigenome refers to "epi" meaning outside the "genome." Epigenetics is the field of study of the epigenome. Epigenetic modifications include changes in the promoter CpG Islands, modifications of histone protein structure, posttranslational repression by micro-RNA which contributes to the alteration of gene expression. Epigenetics provides an understanding of the role of gene-environment interactions on disease phenotype especially in complex multifactorial diseases. Periodontitis is a chronic inflammatory disorder that affects the supporting structures of the tooth. The role of the genome (in terms of genetic polymorphisms in periodontitis pathogenesis has been examined in numerous studies, and chronic periodontitis has been established as a polygenic disorder. The potential role of epigenetic modifications in the various facets of pathogenesis of periodontitis is discussed in this paper based on the available literature.

  1. Epigenetics of dominance for enzyme activity

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Unknown

    Acid phosphatase; dominance; Drosophila malerkotliana; epigenetics; heterodimeric allozymes; subunit interaction. J. Biosci. | Vol. 27 | No. ... Department of Genetics, Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana 141 004, India. *Corresponding ...... the genetic and complementation maps of the locus specifying the enzyme; J.

  2. Targeting deregulated epigenetic control in cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaidi, Sayyed K; Van Wijnen, Andre J; Lian, Jane B; Stein, Janet L; Stein, Gary S

    2013-11-01

    Cancer is a multifaceted disease that involves acquisition of genetic mutations, deletions, and amplifications as well as deregulation of epigenetic mechanisms that fine-tune gene regulation. Key epigenetic mechanisms that include histone modifications, DNA methylation, and non-coding RNA-mediated gene silencing are often deregulated in a variety of cancers. Subnuclear localization of key proteins in the interphase nucleus and bookmarking of genes by lineage commitment factors in mitosis-a new dimension to epigenetic control of fundamental biological processes-is also modified in cancer. In this review, we discuss the various aspects of epigenetic control that are operative in a variety of cancers and their potential for risk assessment, early detection, targeted therapy, and personalized medicine. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Epigenetic variation, phenotypic heritability, and evolution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Furrow, Robert E.; Christiansen, Freddy Bugge; Feldman, Marcus W.

    2014-01-01

    families. The potential importance of this interaction, recognized in classical studies of the genetic epidemiology of complex diseases and other quantitative characters, has reemerged in studies of the effects of epigenetic modifications, their variation, and their transmission between generations....

  4. MicroRNAs, epigenetics and disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Silahtaroglu, Asli; Stenvang, Jan

    2010-01-01

    Epigenetics is defined as the heritable chances that affect gene expression without changing the DNA sequence. Epigenetic regulation of gene expression can be through different mechanisms such as DNA methylation, histone modifications and nucleosome positioning. MicroRNAs are short RNA molecules...... which do not code for a protein but have a role in post-transcriptional silencing of multiple target genes by binding to their 3' UTRs (untranslated regions). Both epigenetic mechanisms, such as DNA methylation and histone modifications, and the microRNAs are crucial for normal differentiation......, development and maintenance of tissue-specific gene expression. These mechanisms also explain how cells with the same DNA content can differentiate into cells with different functions. Changes in epigenetic processes can lead to changes in gene function, cancer formation and progression, as well as other...

  5. Epigenetic Regulation of Monocyte and Macrophage Function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoeksema, Marten A.; de Winther, Menno P. J.

    2016-01-01

    Monocytes and macrophages are key players in tissue homeostasis and immune responses. Epigenetic processes tightly regulate cellular functioning in health and disease. Recent Advances: Recent technical developments have allowed detailed characterizations of the transcriptional circuitry underlying

  6. Anisomorphic cortical reorganization in asymmetric sensorineural hearing loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheung, Steven W; Atencio, Craig A; Levy, Eliott R J; Froemke, Robert C; Schreiner, Christoph E

    2017-08-01

    Acoustic trauma or inner ear disease may predominantly injure one ear, causing asymmetric sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL). While characteristic frequency (CF) map plasticity of primary auditory cortex (AI) contralateral to the injured ear has been detailed, there is no study that also evaluates ipsilateral AI to compare cortical reorganization across both hemispheres. We assess whether the normal isomorphic mirror-image relationship between the two hemispheres is maintained or disrupted in mild-to-moderate asymmetric SNHL of adult squirrel monkeys. At week 24 after induction of acoustic injury to the right ear, functional organization of the two hemispheres differs in direction and magnitude of interaural CF difference, percentage of recording sites with spectrally nonoverlapping binaural activation, and the concurrence of peripheral and central activation thresholds. The emergence of this anisomorphic cortical reorganization of the two hemispheres is replicated by simulation based on spike timing-dependent plasticity, where 1 ) AI input from the contralateral ear is dominant, 2 ) reestablishment of relatively shorter contralateral ear input timing drives reorganization, and 3 ) only AI contralateral to the injured ear undergoes major realignment of interaural frequency maps that evolve over months. Asymmetric SNHL disrupts isomorphic organization between the two hemispheres and results in relative local hemispheric autonomy, potentially impairing performance of tasks that require binaural input alignment or interhemispheric processing. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Mild-to-moderate hearing loss in one ear and essentially normal hearing in the other triggers cortical reorganization that is different in the two hemispheres. Asymmetry of cochlea sensitivities does not simply propagate to the two auditory cortices in mirror-image fashion. The resulting anisomorphic cortical reorganization may be a neurophysiological basis of clinical deficits in asymmetric hearing loss, such as

  7. Glucocorticoids, epigenetic control and stress resilience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johannes M.H.M. Reul

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Glucocorticoid hormones play a pivotal role in the response to stressful challenges. The surge in glucocorticoid hormone secretion after stress needs to be tightly controlled with characteristics like peak height, curvature and duration depending on the nature and severity of the challenge. This is important as chronic hyper- or hypo-responses are detrimental to health due to increasing the risk for developing a stress-related mental disorder. Proper glucocorticoid responses to stress are critical for adaptation. Therefore, the tight control of baseline and stress-evoked glucocorticoid secretion are important constituents of an organism's resilience. Here, we address a number of mechanisms that illustrate the multitude and complexity of measures safeguarding the control of glucocorticoid function. These mechanisms include the control of mineralocorticoid (MR and glucocorticoid receptor (GR occupancy and concentration, the dynamic control of free glucocorticoid hormone availability by corticosteroid-binding globulin (CBG, and the control exerted by glucocorticoids at the signaling, epigenetic and genomic level on gene transcriptional responses to stress. We review the beneficial effects of regular exercise on HPA axis and sleep physiology, and cognitive and anxiety-related behavior. Furthermore, we describe that, possibly through changes in the GABAergic system, exercise reduces the impact of stress on a signaling pathway specifically in the dentate gyrus that is strongly implicated in the behavioral response to that stressor. These observations underline the impact of life style on stress resilience. Finally, we address how single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs affecting glucocorticoid action can compromise stress resilience, which becomes most apparent under conditions of childhood abuse.

  8. Final Report - Epigenetics of low dose radiation effects in an animal model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kovalchuk, Olga

    2014-10-22

    This project sought mechanistic understanding of the epigenetic response of tissues as well as the consequences of those responses, when induced by low dose irradiation in a well-established model system (mouse). Based on solid and extensive preliminary data we investigated the molecular epigenetic mechanisms of in vivo radiation responses, particularly – effects of low, occupationally relevant radiation exposures on the genome stability and adaptive response in mammalian tissues and organisms. We accumulated evidence that low dose irradiation altered epigenetic profiles and impacted radiation target organs of the exposed animals. The main long-term goal was to dissect the epigenetic basis of induction of the low dose radiation-induced genome instability and adaptive response and the specific fundamental roles of epigenetic changes (i.e. DNA methylation, histone modifications and miRNAs) in their generation. We hypothesized that changes in global and regional DNA methylation, global histone modifications and regulatory microRNAs played pivotal roles in the generation and maintenance low-dose radiation-induced genome instability and adaptive response. We predicted that epigenetic changes influenced the levels of genetic rearrangements (transposone reactivation). We hypothesized that epigenetic responses from low dose irradiation were dependent on exposure regimes, and would be greatest when organisms are exposed in a protracted/fractionated manner: fractionated exposures > acute exposures. We anticipated that the epigenetic responses were correlated with the gene expression levels. Our immediate objectives were: • To investigate the exact nature of the global and locus-specific DNA methylation changes in the LDR exposed cells and tissues and dissect their roles in adaptive response • To investigate the roles of histone modifications in the low dose radiation effects and adaptive response • To dissect the roles of regulatory microRNAs and their targets in low

  9. Transgenerational epigenetic effects on animal behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jensen, Per

    2013-12-01

    Over the last decade a shift in paradigm has occurred with respect to the interaction between environment and genes. It is now clear that animal genomes are regulated to a large extent as a result of input from environmental events and experiences, which cause short- and long-term modifications in epigenetic markings of DNA and histones. In this review, the evidence that such epigenetic modifications can affect the behaviour of animals is explored, and whether such acquired behaviour alterations can transfer across generation borders. First, the mechanisms by which experiences cause epigenetic modifications are examined. This includes, for example, methylation of cytosine in CpG positions and acetylation of histones, and studies showing that this can be modified by early experiences. Secondly, the evidence that specific modifications in the epigenome can be the cause of behaviour variation is reviewed. Thirdly, the extent to which this phenotypically active epigenetic variants can be inherited either through the germline or through reoccurring environmental conditions is examined. A particularly interesting observation is that epigenetic modifications are often linked to stress, and may possibly be mediated by steroid effects. Finally, the idea that transgenerationally stable epigenetic variants may serve as substrates for natural selection is explored, and it is speculated that they may even predispose for directed, non-random mutations. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Epigenetic Mechanisms of the Aging Human Retina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katie L. Pennington

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Degenerative retinal diseases, such as glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy, have complex etiologies with environmental, genetic, and epigenetic contributions to disease pathology. Much effort has gone into elucidating both the genetic and the environmental risk factors for these retinal diseases. However, little is known about how these genetic and environmental risk factors bring about molecular changes that lead to pathology. Epigenetic mechanisms have received extensive attention of late for their promise of bridging the gap between environmental exposures and disease development via their influence on gene expression. Recent studies have identified epigenetic changes that associate with the incidence and/or progression of each of these retinal diseases. Therefore, these epigenetic modifications may be involved in the underlying pathological mechanisms leading to blindness. Further genome-wide epigenetic studies that incorporate well-characterized tissue samples, consider challenges similar to those relevant to gene expression studies, and combine the genome-wide epigenetic data with genome-wide genetic and expression data to identify additional potentially causative agents of disease are needed. Such studies will allow researchers to create much-needed therapeutics to prevent and/or intervene in disease progression. Improved therapeutics will greatly enhance the quality of life and reduce the burden of disease management for millions of patients living with these potentially blinding conditions.

  11. Epigenetic regulation of hematopoietic stem cell aging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beerman, Isabel; Rossi, Derrick J.

    2014-01-01

    Aging is invariably associated with alterations of the hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) compartment, including loss of functional capacity, altered clonal composition, and changes in lineage contribution. Although accumulation of DNA damage occurs during HSC aging, it is unlikely such consistent aging phenotypes could be solely attributed to changes in DNA integrity. Another mechanism by which heritable traits could contribute to the changes in the functional potential of aged HSCs is through alterations in the epigenetic landscape of adult stem cells. Indeed, recent studies on hematopoietic stem cells have suggested that altered epigenetic profiles are associated with HSC aging and play a key role in modulating the functional potential of HSCs at different stages during ontogeny. Even small changes of the epigenetic landscape can lead to robustly altered expression patterns, either directly by loss of regulatory control or through indirect, additive effects, ultimately leading to transcriptional changes of the stem cells. Potential drivers of such changes in the epigenetic landscape of aged HSCs include proliferative history, DNA damage, and deregulation of key epigenetic enzymes and complexes. This review will focus largely on the two most characterized epigenetic marks – DNA methylation and histone modifications – but will also discuss the potential role of non-coding RNAs in regulating HSC function during aging

  12. Selective targeting of epigenetic reader domains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greschik, Holger; Schüle, Roland; Günther, Thomas

    2017-05-01

    Epigenetic regulators including writers, erasers, and readers of chromatin marks have been implicated in numerous diseases and are therefore subject of intense academic and pharmaceutical research. While several small-molecule inhibitors targeting writers or erasers are either approved drugs or are currently being evaluated in clinical trials, the targeting of epigenetic readers has lagged behind. Proof-of-principle that epigenetic readers are also relevant drug targets was provided by landmark discoveries of selective inhibitors targeting the BET family of acetyl-lysine readers. More recently, high affinity chemical probes for non-BET acetyl- and methyl-lysine reader domains have also been developed. Areas covered: This article covers recent advances with the identification and validation of inhibitors and chemical probes targeting epigenetic reader domains. Issues related to epigenetic reader druggability, quality requirements for chemical probes, interpretation of cellular action, unexpected cross-talk, and future challenges are also discussed. Expert opinion: Chemical probes provide a powerful means to unravel biological functions of epigenetic readers and evaluate their potential as drug targets. To yield meaningful results, potency, selectivity, and cellular target engagement of chemical probes need to be stringently validated. Future chemical probes will probably need to fulfil additional criteria such as strict target specificity or the targeting of readers within protein complexes.

  13. Epigenetic regulation of hematopoietic stem cell aging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beerman, Isabel, E-mail: isabel.beerman@childrens.harvard.edu [Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138 (United States); Department of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115 (United States); Program in Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Division of Hematology/Oncology, Boston Children' s Hospital, MA 02116 (United States); Rossi, Derrick J. [Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138 (United States); Department of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115 (United States); Program in Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Division of Hematology/Oncology, Boston Children' s Hospital, MA 02116 (United States)

    2014-12-10

    Aging is invariably associated with alterations of the hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) compartment, including loss of functional capacity, altered clonal composition, and changes in lineage contribution. Although accumulation of DNA damage occurs during HSC aging, it is unlikely such consistent aging phenotypes could be solely attributed to changes in DNA integrity. Another mechanism by which heritable traits could contribute to the changes in the functional potential of aged HSCs is through alterations in the epigenetic landscape of adult stem cells. Indeed, recent studies on hematopoietic stem cells have suggested that altered epigenetic profiles are associated with HSC aging and play a key role in modulating the functional potential of HSCs at different stages during ontogeny. Even small changes of the epigenetic landscape can lead to robustly altered expression patterns, either directly by loss of regulatory control or through indirect, additive effects, ultimately leading to transcriptional changes of the stem cells. Potential drivers of such changes in the epigenetic landscape of aged HSCs include proliferative history, DNA damage, and deregulation of key epigenetic enzymes and complexes. This review will focus largely on the two most characterized epigenetic marks – DNA methylation and histone modifications – but will also discuss the potential role of non-coding RNAs in regulating HSC function during aging.

  14. Conference scene: Select Biosciences Epigenetics Europe 2010.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Razvi, Enal S

    2011-02-01

    The field of epigenetics is now on a geometric rise, driven in a large part by the realization that modifiers of chromatin are key regulators of biological processes in vivo. The three major classes of epigenetic effectors are DNA methylation, histone post-translational modifications (such as acetylation, methylation or phosphorylation) and small noncoding RNAs (most notably microRNAs). In this article, I report from Select Biosciences Epigenetics Europe 2010 industry conference held on 14-15 September 2010 at The Burlington Hotel, Dublin, Ireland. This industry conference was extremely well attended with a global pool of delegates representing the academic research community, biotechnology companies and pharmaceutical companies, as well as the technology/tool developers. This conference represented the current state of the epigenetics community with cancer/oncology as a key driver. In fact, it has been estimated that approximately 45% of epigenetic researchers today identify cancer/oncology as their main area of focus vis-à-vis their epigenetic research efforts.

  15. 26 CFR 54.4980B-9 - Business reorganizations and employer withdrawals from multiemployer plans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ...-9 Business reorganizations and employer withdrawals from multiemployer plans. The following... multiemployer plans: Q-1: For purposes of this section, what are a business reorganization, a stock sale, and an... 26 Internal Revenue 17 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Business reorganizations and employer...

  16. 26 CFR 1.358-6 - Stock basis in certain triangular reorganizations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... corporation on the exchange of property for the assets or stock of a target corporation in a reorganization...) Definitions of triangular reorganizations. This section applies to the following reorganizations (which are... percentage of T stock not acquired in the transaction is determined by taking into account the fair market...

  17. 29 CFR 24.114 - District court jurisdiction of retaliation complaints under the Energy Reorganization Act.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... the Energy Reorganization Act. 24.114 Section 24.114 Labor Office of the Secretary of Labor PROCEDURES... Provisions § 24.114 District court jurisdiction of retaliation complaints under the Energy Reorganization Act... the Energy Reorganization Act, and there is no showing that there has been delay due to the bad faith...

  18. 5 CFR 890.504 - Disposition of contingency reserves upon reorganization or merger of plans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... reorganization or merger of plans. 890.504 Section 890.504 Administrative Personnel OFFICE OF PERSONNEL... Contributions and Withholdings § 890.504 Disposition of contingency reserves upon reorganization or merger of plans. Upon reorganization or merger of a plan, OPM must credit to the surviving plan the reserves of...

  19. 78 FR 24669 - Reorganization of Regulations on the Adjudication of Department of Homeland Security Practitioner...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-04-26

    ... Docket No. 174; A.G. Order No. 3384-2013] RIN 1125-AA66 Reorganization of Regulations on the Adjudication.... Reorganization of Regulations on the Adjudication of Department of Homeland Security Practitioner Disciplinary... intermingled the responsibilities of the former INS and EOIR, this transfer required a reorganization of title...

  20. 75 FR 61051 - Reorganization of Title 30, Code of Federal Regulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-04

    ...-AD70 Reorganization of Title 30, Code of Federal Regulations AGENCY: Bureau of Ocean Energy Management... three separate organizations. As part of this reorganization, the Secretary renamed MMS's Minerals... requires reorganization of title 30 of the Code of Federal Regulations (30 CFR). This direct final rule...

  1. 26 CFR 1.368-1T - Purpose and scope of exception of reorganization exchanges (temporary).

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 4 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Purpose and scope of exception of reorganization... Purpose and scope of exception of reorganization exchanges (temporary). (a) through (e)(1) [Reserved]. For... effect the potential reorganization shall be valued on the last business day before the first date such...

  2. 76 FR 10516 - Transfer and Reorganization of Bank Secrecy Act Regulations-Technical Amendment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-02-25

    ..., 1023, 1024, 1025, 1026, 1027, and 1028 RIN 1506-AA92 Transfer and Reorganization of Bank Secrecy Act... covered individuals and financial institutions. The reorganization is not intended to have any substantive... (October 26, 2010) (Transfer and Reorganization of Bank Secrecy Act Regulations Final Rule). On April 14...

  3. Adaptation of brain functional and structural networks in aging.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annie Lee

    Full Text Available The human brain, especially the prefrontal cortex (PFC, is functionally and anatomically reorganized in order to adapt to neuronal challenges in aging. This study employed structural MRI, resting-state fMRI (rs-fMRI, and high angular resolution diffusion imaging (HARDI, and examined the functional and structural reorganization of the PFC in aging using a Chinese sample of 173 subjects aged from 21 years and above. We found age-related increases in the structural connectivity between the PFC and posterior brain regions. Such findings were partially mediated by age-related increases in the structural connectivity of the occipital lobe within the posterior brain. Based on our findings, it is thought that the PFC reorganization in aging could be partly due to the adaptation to age-related changes in the structural reorganization of the posterior brain. This thus supports the idea derived from task-based fMRI that the PFC reorganization in aging may be adapted to the need of compensation for resolving less distinctive stimulus information from the posterior brain regions. In addition, we found that the structural connectivity of the PFC with the temporal lobe was fully mediated by the temporal cortical thickness, suggesting that the brain morphology plays an important role in the functional and structural reorganization with aging.

  4. Adaptation of brain functional and structural networks in aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Annie; Ratnarajah, Nagulan; Tuan, Ta Anh; Chen, Shen-Hsing Annabel; Qiu, Anqi

    2015-01-01

    The human brain, especially the prefrontal cortex (PFC), is functionally and anatomically reorganized in order to adapt to neuronal challenges in aging. This study employed structural MRI, resting-state fMRI (rs-fMRI), and high angular resolution diffusion imaging (HARDI), and examined the functional and structural reorganization of the PFC in aging using a Chinese sample of 173 subjects aged from 21 years and above. We found age-related increases in the structural connectivity between the PFC and posterior brain regions. Such findings were partially mediated by age-related increases in the structural connectivity of the occipital lobe within the posterior brain. Based on our findings, it is thought that the PFC reorganization in aging could be partly due to the adaptation to age-related changes in the structural reorganization of the posterior brain. This thus supports the idea derived from task-based fMRI that the PFC reorganization in aging may be adapted to the need of compensation for resolving less distinctive stimulus information from the posterior brain regions. In addition, we found that the structural connectivity of the PFC with the temporal lobe was fully mediated by the temporal cortical thickness, suggesting that the brain morphology plays an important role in the functional and structural reorganization with aging.

  5. Reorganization of water utilities - regionalization, an opportunity to increase their efficiency A comparative literature - Albania Case

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julian Naqellari

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this research is the study and analysis of factors affecting the need for reorganization of entities engaged in water supply services. From this perspective, the research seeks to identify international practices made in this regard and how they can be adapted to water utilities in Albania. The objective of this paper is to show that regionalization of water utilities is a successful development direction not only of studied literature but also practice in Albania. The study is based on sources of information taken from primary and secondary sources. The selected method for collecting and processing information from primary sources is the empirical method through direct surveys and questionnaires, whereas from secondary sources is descriptive and analytical method. As secondary sources, we are consulted and referred to academic resources, such as articles, books, studies and reports carried out and published by national organizations, local and foreign companies in this field.

  6. Epigenetic side-effects of common pharmaceuticals: a potential new field in medicine and pharmacology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Csoka, Antonei B; Szyf, Moshe

    2009-11-01

    The term "Epigenetics" refers to DNA and chromatin modifications that persist from one cell division to the next, despite a lack of change in the underlying DNA sequence. The "epigenome" refers to the overall epigenetic state of a cell, and serves as an interface between the environment and the genome. The epigenome is dynamic and responsive to environmental signals not only during development, but also throughout life; and it is becoming increasingly apparent that chemicals can cause changes in gene expression that persist long after exposure has ceased. Here we present the hypothesis that commonly-used pharmaceutical drugs can cause such persistent epigenetic changes. Drugs may alter epigenetic homeostasis by direct or indirect mechanisms. Direct effects may be caused by drugs which affect chromatin architecture or DNA methylation. For example the antihypertensive hydralazine inhibits DNA methylation. An example of an indirectly acting drug is isotretinoin, which has transcription factor activity. A two-tier mechanism is postulated for indirect effects in which acute exposure to a drug influences signaling pathways that may lead to an alteration of transcription factor activity at gene promoters. This stimulation results in the altered expression of receptors, signaling molecules, and other proteins necessary to alter genetic regulatory circuits. With more chronic exposure, cells adapt by an unknown hypothetical process that results in more permanent modifications to DNA methylation and chromatin structure, leading to enduring alteration of a given epigenetic network. Therefore, any epigenetic side-effect caused by a drug may persist after the drug is discontinued. It is further proposed that some iatrogenic diseases such as tardive dyskinesia and drug-induced SLE are epigenetic in nature. If this hypothesis is correct the consequences for modern medicine are profound, since it would imply that our current understanding of pharmacology is an oversimplification

  7. Gut indigenous microbiota and epigenetics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boris Arkadievich Shenderov

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available This review introduces and discusses data regarding fundamental and applied investigations in mammalian epigenomics and gut microbiota received over the last 10 years. Analysis of these data enabled the author first to come to the conclusion that the multiple low molecular weight substances of indigenous gut microbiota origin should be considered one of the main endogenous factors actively participating in epigenomic mechanisms that responsible for the mammalian genome reprogramming and post-translated modifications. Gut microecological imbalance coursed by various biogenic and abiogenic agents and factors can produce the different epigenetic abnormalities and the onset and progression of metabolic diseases associated. The author substantiates the necessity to create an international project ‘Human Gut Microbiota and Epigenomics’ that facilitates interdisciplinary collaborations among scientists and clinicians engaged in host microbial ecology, nutrition, metagenomics, epigenomics and metabolomics investigations as well as in diseases prevention and treatment. Some priority scientific and applied directions in the current omic technologies coupled with gnotobiological approaches are suggested that can open a new era in characterizing the role of the symbiotic microbiota small metabolic and signal molecules in the host epigenomics. Although discussed subject is only at an early stage its validation can open novel approaches in drug discovery studies.

  8. Epigenetic regulation and fetal programming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gicquel, Christine; El-Osta, Assam; Le Bouc, Yves

    2008-02-01

    Fetal programming encompasses the role of developmental plasticity in response to environmental and nutritional signals during early life and its potential adverse consequences (risk of cardiovascular, metabolic and behavioural diseases) in later life. The first studies in this field highlighted an association between poor fetal growth and chronic adult diseases. However, environmental signals during early life may lead to adverse long-term effects independently of obvious effects on fetal growth. Adverse long-term effects reflect a mismatch between early (fetal and neonatal) environmental conditions and the conditions that the individual will confront later in life. The mechanisms underlying this risk remain unclear. However, experimental data in rodents and recent observations in humans suggest that epigenetic changes in regulatory genes and growth-related genes play a significant role in fetal programming. Improvements in our understanding of the biochemical and molecular mechanisms at play in fetal programming would make it possible to identify biomarkers for detecting infants at high risk of adult-onset diseases. Such improvements should also lead to the development of preventive and therapeutic strategies.

  9. Clinical applications of epigenetic markers and epigenetic profiling in myeloid malignancies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDevitt, Michael A

    2012-02-01

    Aberrant DNA methylation is frequent in the myeloid malignancies, particularly myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and acute myelogenous leukemia (AML). Promoter CpG methylation is correlated with silencing of tumor-suppressor genes (TSGs) in specific pathways that are also targets of mutation or other mechanisms of inactivation, and is thought to contribute to disease progression and poor prognosis. Epigenetic contributions to myeloid pathogenesis are more complex. Examples include TSG inactivation and oncogenic activation associated with formation of altered chromatin separate from CpG methylation. Epigenetic dysregulation occurs at multiple disease stages and at non-CpG island genomic sites, and also includes genomic hypomethylation and small RNA mechanisms of epigenetic regulation. Identification of recurrent mutations in potential epigenetic regulators, including TET2, IDH1, IDH2, DNMT3A, UTX, and ASXL1, were recently described. Accordingly, therapeutics directed towards epigenetic mechanisms including methylation inhibitors and histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors have had some clinical success when applied to MDS and AML. However, identification of the underlying mechanisms associated with clinical responses and drug resistance remain enigmatic. Remarkably, in spite of significant molecular and translational progress, there are currently no epigenetic biomarkers in widespread clinical use. In this review, we explore the potential applications of epigenetic biomarker discovery, including epigenetic profiling for myeloid malignancy pathogenesis understanding, diagnostic classification, and development of effective treatment paradigms for these generally considered poor prognosis disorders. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  10. Therapy-induced brain reorganization patterns in aphasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abel, Stefanie; Weiller, Cornelius; Huber, Walter; Willmes, Klaus; Specht, Karsten

    2015-04-01

    Both hemispheres are engaged in recovery from word production deficits in aphasia. Lexical therapy has been shown to induce brain reorganization even in patients with chronic aphasia. However, the interplay of factors influencing reorganization patterns still remains unresolved. We were especially interested in the relation between lesion site, therapy-induced recovery, and beneficial reorganization patterns. Thus, we applied intensive lexical therapy, which was evaluated with functional magnetic resonance imaging, to 14 chronic patients with aphasic word retrieval deficits. In a group study, we aimed to illuminate brain reorganization of the naming network in comparison with healthy controls. Moreover, we intended to analyse the data with joint independent component analysis to relate lesion sites to therapy-induced brain reorganization, and to correlate resulting components with therapy gain. As a result, we found peri-lesional and contralateral activations basically overlapping with premorbid naming networks observed in healthy subjects. Reduced activation patterns for patients compared to controls before training comprised damaged left hemisphere language areas, right precentral and superior temporal gyrus, as well as left caudate and anterior cingulate cortex. There were decreasing activations of bilateral visuo-cognitive, articulatory, attention, and language areas due to therapy, with stronger decreases for patients in right middle temporal gyrus/superior temporal sulcus, bilateral precuneus as well as left anterior cingulate cortex and caudate. The joint independent component analysis revealed three components indexing lesion subtypes that were associated with patient-specific recovery patterns. Activation decreases (i) of an extended frontal lesion disconnecting language pathways occurred in left inferior frontal gyrus; (ii) of a small frontal lesion were found in bilateral inferior frontal gyrus; and (iii) of a large temporo-parietal lesion occurred in

  11. STRESS RISK FACTORS AND STRESS-RELATED PATHOLOGY: NEUROPLASTICITY, EPIGENETICS AND ENDOPHENOTYPES

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radley, Jason J.; Kabbaj, Mohamed; Jacobson, Lauren; Heydendael, Willem; Yehuda, Rachel; Herman, James P.

    2013-01-01

    This review highlights a symposium on stress risk factors and stress susceptibility, presented at the Neurobiology of Stress workshop in Boulder, Colorado, June 2010. This symposium addressed factors linking stress plasticity and reactivity to stress pathology in animal models and in humans. Dr. Jason Radley discussed studies demonstrating prefrontal cortical neuroplasticity and prefrontal control of hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenocortical axis function in rat, highlighting emerging evidence for a critical role of this region in normal and pathological stress integration. Dr. Mohamed Kabbaj summarized his studies of possible epigenetic mechanisms underlying behavioral differences in rat populations bred for differential stress reactivity. Dr. Lauren Jacobson described studies using a mouse model to explore the diverse actions of antidepressant action in brain, suggesting mechanisms whereby antidepressants may be differentially effective in treating specific depression endophenotypes. Dr. Rachel Yehuda discussed the role of glucocorticoids in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), indicating that low cortisol may be a trait that predisposes the individual to development of the disorder. Furthermore, she presented evidence indicating that traumatic events can have transgenerational impact on cortisol reactivity and development of PTSD symptoms. Together, the symposium highlighted emerging themes regarding the role of brain reorganization, individual differences and epigenetics in determining stress plasticity and pathology. PMID:21848436

  12. Auditory map reorganization and pitch discrimination in adult rats chronically exposed to low-level ambient noise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Weimin

    2012-01-01

    Behavioral adaption to a changing environment is critical for an animal's survival. How well the brain can modify its functional properties based on experience essentially defines the limits of behavioral adaptation. In adult animals the extent to which experience shapes brain function has not been fully explored. Moreover, the perceptual consequences of experience-induced changes in the brains of adults remain unknown. Here we show that the tonotopic map in the primary auditory cortex of adult rats living with low-level ambient noise underwent a dramatic reorganization. Behaviorally, chronic noise-exposure impaired fine, but not coarse pitch discrimination. When tested in a noisy environment, the noise-exposed rats performed as well as in a quiet environment whereas the control rats performed poorly. This suggests that noise-exposed animals had adapted to living in a noisy environment. Behavioral pattern analyses revealed that stress or distraction engendered by the noisy background could not account for the poor performance of the control rats in a noisy environment. A reorganized auditory map may therefore have served as the neural substrate for the consistent performance of the noise-exposed rats in a noisy environment. PMID:22973201

  13. DNA Methylation, Epigenetics, and Evolution in Vertebrates: Facts and Challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annalisa Varriale

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available DNA methylation is a key epigenetic modification in the vertebrate genomes known to be involved in biological processes such as regulation of gene expression, DNA structure and control of transposable elements. Despite increasing knowledge about DNA methylation, we still lack a complete understanding of its specific functions and correlation with environment and gene expression in diverse organisms. To understand how global DNA methylation levels changed under environmental influence during vertebrate evolution, we analyzed its distribution pattern along the whole genome in mammals, reptiles and fishes showing that it is correlated with temperature, independently on phylogenetic inheritance. Other studies in mammals and plants have evidenced that environmental stimuli can promote epigenetic changes that, in turn, might generate localized changes in DNA sequence resulting in phenotypic effects. All these observations suggest that environment can affect the epigenome of vertebrates by generating hugely different methylation patterns that could, possibly, reflect in phenotypic differences. We are at the first steps towards the understanding of mechanisms that underlie the role of environment in molding the entire genome over evolutionary times. The next challenge will be to map similarities and differences of DNA methylation in vertebrates and to associate them with environmental adaptation and evolution.

  14. Drying induced upright sliding and reorganization of carbon nanotube arrays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li Qingwen; De Paula, Raymond; Zhang Xiefei; Zheng Lianxi; Arendt, Paul N; Mueller, Fred M; Zhu, Y T; Tu Yi

    2006-01-01

    Driven by capillary force, wet carbon nanotube (CNT) arrays have been found to reorganize into cellular structures upon drying. During the reorganization process, individual CNTs are firmly attached to the substrate and have to lie down on the substrate at cell bottoms, forming closed cells. Here we demonstrate that by modifying catalyst structures, the adhesion of CNTs to the substrate can be weakened. Upon drying such CNT arrays, CNTs may slide away from their original sites on the surface and self-assemble into cellular patterns with bottoms open. It is also found that the sliding distance of CNTs increases with array height, and drying millimetre tall arrays leads to the sliding of CNTs over a few hundred micrometres and the eventual self-assembly into discrete islands. By introducing regular vacancies in CNT arrays, CNTs may be manipulated into different patterns

  15. Proposal and Research Direction of Soil Mass Organic Reorganization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Lu; Han, Jichang

    2018-01-01

    Land engineering as a new discipline has been temporarily outrageous. The proposition of soil body organic reorganization undoubtedly enriches the research content for the construction of land engineering disciplines. Soil body organic reconstruction is designed to study how to realize the ecological ecology of the land by studying the external force of nature, to study the influence of sunlight, wind and water on soil body, how to improve the soil physical structure, to further strengthen the research of biological enzymes and microbes, and promote the release and utilization of beneficial inert elements in soil body. The emerging of frontier scientific research issues with soil body organic reorganization to indicate directions for the future development of soil engineering.

  16. Epigenetic mechanism of radiation carcinogenesis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Niwa, Ohtsura

    1995-01-01

    Carcinogenic action of radiations has long been thought to be due to its mutagenic activity. Since DNA damage is induced and distributes in a stochastic fashion, radiation induction of cancers was also assumed to follow a stochastic kinetics. However, recent progress in radiation research has revealed that some features of radiation carcinogenesis are not explainable by the simple action of radiation as a DNA damaging and mutagenic agent. Firstly, frequencies of radiation-induced transformation in vitro and radiation-induced mammary cancers in rats are too high to be accounted for by the frequency of radiation-induced mutation. Secondly, trans-generation carcinogenesis among F1 mice born to irradiated parents occurs also much more frequently than to be predicted by the frequency of radiation induced germline mutation. Thirdly, multistage carcinogenesis theory predicts that carcinogens give hits to the target cells so as to shorten the latency of cancers. However, latencies of radiation induced solid cancers among atomic bomb survivors are similar to those of the control population. Fourthly, although radiation elevates the frequency of cancers, the induced cancers seem to share the same spectrum of cancer types as in the unirradiated control populations. This suggests that radiation induces cancer by enhancement of the spontaneous carcinogenesis process. These data suggest that the first step of radiation carcinogenesis may not be the direct induction of mutation. Radiation may induce genetic instability which increases the spontaneous mutation rate in the cells to produce carcinogenic mutations. Growth stimulatory effect of radiation may also contribute to the process. Thus, epigenetic, but not genetic effect of radiation might better contribute in the process of carcinogenesis. (author)

  17. Self-repairing symmetry in jellyfish through mechanically driven reorganization

    OpenAIRE

    Abrams, Michael J.; Basinger, Ty; Yuan, William; Guo, Chin-Lin; Goentoro, Lea

    2015-01-01

    What happens when an animal is injured and loses important structures? Some animals simply heal the wound, whereas others are able to regenerate lost parts. In this study, we report a previously unidentified strategy of self-repair, where moon jellyfish respond to injuries by reorganizing existing parts, and rebuilding essential body symmetry, without regenerating what is lost. Specifically, in response to arm amputation, the young jellyfish of Aurelia aurita rearrange their remaining arms, r...

  18. Reorganizing U.S. Domestic Intelligence: Assessing the Options

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-01-01

    international and domestic terrorism has not disappeared, nor is it likely ever to do so entirely. Political violence has been an element of the strategies of...Commission on Terrorist Attacks on the United States. “ Australia to Double Spy Personnel,” BBC News, October 17, 2005. Advisory Panel to Assess Domestic ...number. 1. REPORT DATE 2008 2. REPORT TYPE 3. DATES COVERED 00-00-2008 to 00-00-2008 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Reorganizing U.S. Domestic Intelligence

  19. Bilateral reorganization of the dentate gyrus in hippocampal sclerosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thom, M; Martinian, L; Catarino, C; Yogarajah, M; Koepp, M J.; Caboclo, L; Sisodiya, S M.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Hippocampal sclerosis (HS) is the most common surgical pathology associated with mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (MTLE). HS is typically characterized by mossy fiber sprouting (MFS) and reorganization of neuropeptide Y (NPY) fiber networks in the dentate gyrus. One potential cause of postoperative seizure recurrence following temporal lobe surgery may be the presence of seizure-associated bilateral hippocampal damage. We aimed to investigate patterns of hippocampal abnormalities in a postmortem series as identified by NPY and dynorphin immunohistochemistry. Methods: Analysis of dentate gyrus fiber reorganization, using dynorphin (to demonstrate MFS) and NPY immunohistochemistry, was carried out in a postmortem epilepsy series of 25 cases (age range 21–96 years). In 9 patients, previously refractory seizures had become well controlled for up to 34 years prior to death. Results: Bilateral MFS or abnormal NPY patterns were seen in 15 patients including those with bilateral symmetric, asymmetric, and unilateral HS by conventional histologic criteria. MFS and NPY reorganization was present in all classical HS cases, more variably in atypical HS, present in both MTLE and non-MTLE syndromes and with seizure histories of up to 92 years, despite seizure remission in some patients. Conclusion: Synaptic reorganization in the dentate gyrus may be a bilateral, persistent process in epilepsy. It is unlikely to be sufficient to generate seizures and more likely to represent a seizure-induced phenomenon. GLOSSARY AED = antiepileptic drug; CA1p = CA1-predominant hippocampal sclerosis; CHS = classical hippocampal sclerosis; EFG = end folium gliosis; EFS = end folium sclerosis; GCD = granule cell dispersion; GCL = granule cell layer; HS = hippocampal sclerosis; MFS = mossy fiber sprouting; MTLE = mesial temporal lobe epilepsy; NPY = neuropeptide Y; ROI = region of interest; SE = status epilepticus; TLE = temporal lobe epilepsy. PMID:19710404

  20. Reorganizing Geographic Combatant Command Headquarters for Joint Force 2020

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-05-01

    Fred R. David, Strategic Management: Concepts and Cases (Upper Saddle River, NJ, 2005), 251. 2 efficiencies in overhead and headquarters.” 3... Fred J. Borch (Chief Executive Officer (then known as CXO) from 1963-1972) “instituted a series of corporate reorganizations;” 16 formed several... hollow force; and then recognizing that we might not get it right, and that we needed to build in reversibility both on the industrial base and in our

  1. Adsorbate Reorganization at Steps: NO on Pd(211)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hammer, Bjørk; Nørskov, Jens Kehlet

    1997-01-01

    The interaction of nitric oxide, NO, with the stepped Pd(211) surface is studied using density functional theory slab calculations. Calculated chemisorption energies and geometries reveal that surface sites are not populated in a sequential manner as the NO coverage is increased. This comes about...... through mutual NO interactions that reorganize the adsorbates during the adsorption. The finding of nonsequential site population allows a reinterpretation of existing experimental data....

  2. Epigenetic Mechanisms of Depression and Antidepressants Action

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vialou, Vincent; Feng, Jian; Robison, Alfred J.; Nestler, Eric J.

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms, which control chromatin structure and function, mediate changes in gene expression that occur in response to diverse stimuli. Recent research has established that environmental events and behavioral experience induce epigenetic changes at particular gene loci that help shape neuronal plasticity and function, and hence behavior, and that some of these changes can be very stable and even persist for a lifetime. Increasing evidence supports the hypothesis that aberrations in chromatin remodeling and subsequent effects on gene expression within limbic brain regions contribute to the pathogenesis of depression and other stress-related disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder and other anxiety syndromes. Likewise, the gradually developing but persistent therapeutic effects of antidepressant medications may be achieved in part via epigenetic mechanisms. This review discusses recent advances in understanding epigenetic regulation of stress-related disorders and focuses on three distinct aspects of stress-induced epigenetic pathology: the effects of stress and antidepressant treatment during adulthood, the life-long effects of early life stress on subsequent stress vulnerability, and the possible trans-generational transmission of stress-induced abnormalities. PMID:23020296

  3. Accelerated epigenetic aging in Werner syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maierhofer, Anna; Flunkert, Julia; Oshima, Junko; Martin, George M; Haaf, Thomas; Horvath, Steve

    2017-04-01

    Individuals suffering from Werner syndrome (WS) exhibit many clinical signs of accelerated aging. While the underlying constitutional mutation leads to accelerated rates of DNA damage, it is not yet known whether WS is also associated with an increased epigenetic age according to a DNA methylation based biomarker of aging (the "Epigenetic Clock"). Using whole blood methylation data from 18 WS cases and 18 age matched controls, we find that WS is associated with increased extrinsic epigenetic age acceleration (p=0.0072) and intrinsic epigenetic age acceleration (p=0.04), the latter of which is independent of age-related changes in the composition of peripheral blood cells. A multivariate model analysis reveals that WS is associated with an increase in DNA methylation age (on average 6.4 years, p=0.011) even after adjusting for chronological age, gender, and blood cell counts. Further, WS might be associated with a reduction in naïve CD8+ T cells (p=0.025) according to imputed measures of blood cell counts. Overall, this study shows that WS is associated with an increased epigenetic age of blood cells which is independent of changes in blood cell composition. The extent to which this alteration is a cause or effect of WS disease phenotypes remains unknown.

  4. Cancer control and prevention: nutrition and epigenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verma, Mukesh

    2013-07-01

    To evaluate recent developments in nutritional epigenomics and related challenges, opportunities, and implications for cancer control and prevention. Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide, and understanding the factors that contribute to cancer development may facilitate the development of strategies for cancer prevention and control. Cancer development involves genetic and epigenetic alterations. Genetic marks are permanent, whereas epigenetic marks are dynamic, change with age, and are influenced by the external environment. Thus, epigenetics provides a link between the environment, diet, and cancer development. Proper food selection is imperative for better health and to avoid cancer and other diseases. Nutrients either contribute directly to cancer prevention or support the repair of genomic and epigenomic damage caused by exposure to cancer-causing agents such as toxins, free radicals, radiation, and infectious agents. Nutritional epigenomics provides an opportunity for cancer prevention because selected nutrients have the potential to reverse cancer-associated epigenetic marks in different tumor types. A number of natural foods and their bioactive components have been shown to have methylation-inhibitory and deacetylation-inhibitory properties. Natural foods and bioactive food components have characteristics and functions that are similar to epigenetic inhibitors and therefore have potential in cancer control and prevention.

  5. Potential of epigenetic mechanisms in AMD pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blasiak, Janusz; Salminen, Antero; Kaarniranta, Kai

    2013-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is an ocular disease and the main reason for sight loss in the elderly in the developed countries. The pathogenesis of the disease is complex and not fully understood, but involves several environmental and genetic risk factors. However, little is known about the role of epigenetics in this disease although it is recognized that epigenetic alterations often precede genetic changes in many pathological conditions and regulate aging and the developmental processes. There is experimental evidence for the involvement of DNA methylation and histone modifications in the pathogenesis of drusen formation, a central hallmark of AMD. However, the main impact of epigenetic modifications, including persistent lysine methylation of the H3 histone, is exerted during retinal embryonic development. This interplay opens an exciting possibility to manipulate the epigenetic pattern and to develop novel AMD therapies by physical, pharmacological or genetic interventions. One of the most intriguing questions is why different individuals develop different AMD phenotypes. Epigenetic regulation might open new perspectives into these changes in AMD pathology.

  6. Epigenetics for anthropologists: An introduction to methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Non, Amy L; Thayer, Zaneta M

    2015-01-01

    The study of epigenetics, or chemical modifications to the genome that may alter gene expression, is a growing area of interest for social scientists. Anthropologists and human biologists are interested in epigenetics specifically, as it provides a potential link between the environment and the genome, as well as a new layer of complexity for the study of human biological variation. In pace with the rapid increase in interest in epigenetic research, the range of methods has greatly expanded over the past decade. The primary objective of this article is to provide an overview of the current methods for assaying DNA methylation, the most commonly studied epigenetic modification. We will address considerations for all steps required to plan and conduct an analysis of DNA methylation, from appropriate sample collection, to the most commonly used methods for laboratory analyses of locus-specific and genome-wide approaches, and recommendations for statistical analyses. Key challenges in the study of DNA methylation are also discussed, including tissue specificity, the stability of measures, timing of sample collection, statistical considerations, batch effects, and challenges related to analysis and interpretation of data. Our hope is that this review serves as a primer for anthropologists and human biologists interested in incorporating epigenetic data into their research programs. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Epigenetic regulation of estrogen-dependent memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fortress, Ashley M.; Frick, Karyn M.

    2014-01-01

    Hippocampal memory formation is highly regulated by post-translational histone modifications and DNA methylation. Accordingly, these epigenetic processes play a major role in the effects of modulatory factors, such as sex steroid hormones, on hippocampal memory. Our laboratory recently demonstrated that the ability of the potent estrogen 17β-estradiol (E2) to enhance hippocampal-dependent novel object recognition memory in ovariectomized female mice requires ERK-dependent histone H3 acetylation and DNA methylation in the dorsal hippocampus. Although these data provide valuable insight into the chromatin modifications that mediate the memory-enhancing effects of E2, epigenetic regulation of gene expression is enormously complex. Therefore, more research is needed to fully understand how E2 and other hormones employ epigenetic alterations to shape behavior. This review discusses the epigenetic alterations shown thus far to regulate hippocampal memory, briefly reviews the effects of E2 on hippocampal function, and describes in detail our work on epigenetic regulation of estrogenic memory enhancement. PMID:24878494

  8. Obesity accelerates epigenetic aging of human liver.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horvath, Steve; Erhart, Wiebke; Brosch, Mario; Ammerpohl, Ole; von Schönfels, Witigo; Ahrens, Markus; Heits, Nils; Bell, Jordana T; Tsai, Pei-Chien; Spector, Tim D; Deloukas, Panos; Siebert, Reiner; Sipos, Bence; Becker, Thomas; Röcken, Christoph; Schafmayer, Clemens; Hampe, Jochen

    2014-10-28

    Because of the dearth of biomarkers of aging, it has been difficult to test the hypothesis that obesity increases tissue age. Here we use a novel epigenetic biomarker of aging (referred to as an "epigenetic clock") to study the relationship between high body mass index (BMI) and the DNA methylation ages of human blood, liver, muscle, and adipose tissue. A significant correlation between BMI and epigenetic age acceleration could only be observed for liver (r = 0.42, P = 6.8 × 10(-4) in dataset 1 and r = 0.42, P = 1.2 × 10(-4) in dataset 2). On average, epigenetic age increased by 3.3 y for each 10 BMI units. The detected age acceleration in liver is not associated with the Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease Activity Score or any of its component traits after adjustment for BMI. The 279 genes that are underexpressed in older liver samples are highly enriched (1.2 × 10(-9)) with nuclear mitochondrial genes that play a role in oxidative phosphorylation and electron transport. The epigenetic age acceleration, which is not reversible in the short term after rapid weight loss induced by bariatric surgery, may play a role in liver-related comorbidities of obesity, such as insulin resistance and liver cancer.

  9. Ipsilateral and Contralateral Auditory Brainstem Response Reorganization in Hemispherectomized Patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ning Yao

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Cortical hemispherectomy leads to degeneration of ipsilateral subcortical structures, which can be observed long term after the operation. Therefore, reorganization of the brainstem auditory pathway might occur. The aim of this study was to assess reorganization of brainstem auditory pathways by measuring the auditory brainstem response (ABR in long-term hemispherectomized patients. Methods. We performed bilateral monaural stimulation and measured bilateral ABR in 8 patients ~20 years after hemispherectomy and 10 control subjects. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI was performed in patients to assess structural degeneration. Results. All patients showed degenerated ipsilateral brainstem structures by MRI but no significant differences in bilateral recording ABR wave latencies. However, nonsurgical-side stimulation elicited significantly longer wave V latencies compared to surgical-side stimulation. Differences in bilateral ABR were observed between hemispherectomized patients and control subjects. Waves III and V latencies elicited by nonsurgical-side stimulation were significantly longer than those in control subjects; surgical-side stimulation showed no significant differences. Conclusions. (1 Differences in ABR latency elicited by unilateral stimulation are predominantly due to bilateral brainstem auditory pathway activity rather than to changes in brainstem volume; (2 ABR Waves III and V originate predominantly in the contralateral brainstem; and (3 subcortical auditory pathways appear to reorganize after long term hemispherectomy.

  10. Epigenetic priming restores the HLA class-I antigen processing machinery expression in Merkel cell carcinoma

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ritter, Cathrin; Fan, Kaiji; Paschen, Annette

    2017-01-01

    Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare and aggressive, yet highly immunogenic skin cancer. The latter is due to its viral or UV-associated carcinogenesis. For tumor progression MCC has to escape the host's immuno-surveillance, e.g. by loss of HLA class-I expression. Indeed, a reduced HLA class-I e......-I expression on MCC cells by epigenetic priming is an attractive approach to enhance therapies boosting adaptive immune responses....

  11. Epigenetic Effect of Environmental Factors on Autism Spectrum Disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takeo Kubota

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Both environmental factors and genetic factors are involved in the pathogenesis of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs. Epigenetics, an essential mechanism for gene regulation based on chemical modifications of DNA and histone proteins, is also involved in congenital ASDs. It was recently demonstrated that environmental factors, such as endocrine disrupting chemicals and mental stress in early life, can change epigenetic status and gene expression, and can cause ASDs. Moreover, environmentally induced epigenetic changes are not erased during gametogenesis and are transmitted to subsequent generations, leading to changes in behavior phenotypes. However, epigenetics has a reversible nature since it is based on the addition or removal of chemical residues, and thus the original epigenetic status may be restored. Indeed, several antidepressants and anticonvulsants used for mental disorders including ASDs restore the epigenetic state and gene expression. Therefore, further epigenetic understanding of ASDs is important for the development of new drugs that take advantages of epigenetic reversibility.

  12. Epigenetic Effect of Environmental Factors on Autism Spectrum Disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubota, Takeo; Mochizuki, Kazuki

    2016-05-14

    Both environmental factors and genetic factors are involved in the pathogenesis of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Epigenetics, an essential mechanism for gene regulation based on chemical modifications of DNA and histone proteins, is also involved in congenital ASDs. It was recently demonstrated that environmental factors, such as endocrine disrupting chemicals and mental stress in early life, can change epigenetic status and gene expression, and can cause ASDs. Moreover, environmentally induced epigenetic changes are not erased during gametogenesis and are transmitted to subsequent generations, leading to changes in behavior phenotypes. However, epigenetics has a reversible nature since it is based on the addition or removal of chemical residues, and thus the original epigenetic status may be restored. Indeed, several antidepressants and anticonvulsants used for mental disorders including ASDs restore the epigenetic state and gene expression. Therefore, further epigenetic understanding of ASDs is important for the development of new drugs that take advantages of epigenetic reversibility.

  13. Three epigenetic information channels and their different roles in evolution

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Shea, N.; Pen, I.; Uller, T.

    There is increasing evidence for epigenetically mediated transgenerational inheritance across taxa. However, the evolutionary implications of such alternative mechanisms of inheritance remain unclear. Herein, we show that epigenetic mechanisms can serve two fundamentally different functions in

  14. Studies into epigenetic variation and its contribution to cardiovascular disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Talens, Rudolf Pieter

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms regulate cellular gene expression potential without changing the genetic code. Like the genetic sequence, epigenetic marks are faithfully transmitted during mitosis and are generally stable in differentiated cells, but in contrast with the static genome, the epigenome retains

  15. Epigenetic Mechanisms Facilitating Oligodendrocyte Development, Maturation, and Aging

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Copray, Sjef; Huynh, Jimmy Long; Sher, Falak; Casaccia-Bonnefil, Patrizia; Boddeke, Erik

    2009-01-01

    The process of oligodendrocyte differentiation is regulated by a dynamic interaction between a genetic and an epigenetic program. Recent studies, addressing nucleosomal histone modifications have considerably increased our knowledge regarding epigenetic regulation of gene expression during

  16. Computer-Aided Drug Design in Epigenetics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenchao Lu

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Epigenetic dysfunction has been widely implicated in several diseases especially cancers thus highlights the therapeutic potential for chemical interventions in this field. With rapid development of computational methodologies and high-performance computational resources, computer-aided drug design has emerged as a promising strategy to speed up epigenetic drug discovery. Herein, we make a brief overview of major computational methods reported in the literature including druggability prediction, virtual screening, homology modeling, scaffold hopping, pharmacophore modeling, molecular dynamics simulations, quantum chemistry calculation, and 3D quantitative structure activity relationship that have been successfully applied in the design and discovery of epi-drugs and epi-probes. Finally, we discuss about major limitations of current virtual drug design strategies in epigenetics drug discovery and future directions in this field.

  17. Rice epigenomics and epigenetics: challenges and opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiangsong; Zhou, Dao-Xiu

    2013-05-01

    During recent years rice genome-wide epigenomic information such as DNA methylation and histone modifications, which are important for genome activity has been accumulated. The function of a number of rice epigenetic regulators has been studied, many of which are found to be involved in a diverse range of developmental and stress-responsive pathways. Analysis of epigenetic variations among different rice varieties indicates that epigenetic modification may lead to inheritable phenotypic variation. Characterizing phenotypic consequences of rice epigenomic variations and the underlining chromatin mechanism and identifying epialleles related to important agronomic traits may provide novel strategies to enhance agronomically favorable traits and grain productivity in rice. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. First Barcelona Conference on Epigenetics and Cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palau, Anna; Perucho, Manuel; Esteller, Manel; Buschbeck, Marcus

    2014-01-01

    The Barcelona Conference on Epigenetics and Cancer (BCEC) entitled “Challenges, opportunities and perspectives” took place November 21–22, 2013 in Barcelona. The 2013 BCEC is the first edition of a series of annual conferences jointly organized by five leading research centers in Barcelona. These centers are the Institute of Predictive and Personalized Medicine of Cancer (IMPPC), the Biomedical Campus Bellvitge with its Program of Epigenetics and Cancer Biology (PEBC), the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG), the Institute for Biomedical Research (IRB), and the Molecular Biology Institute of Barcelona (IBMB). Manuel Perucho and Marcus Buschbeck from the Institute of Predictive and Personalized Medicine of Cancer put together the scientific program of the first conference broadly covering all aspects of epigenetic research ranging from fundamental molecular research to drug and biomarker development and clinical application. In one and a half days, 23 talks and 50 posters were presented to a completely booked out audience counting 270 participants. PMID:24413145

  19. Design of small molecule epigenetic modulators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pachaiyappan, Boobalan; Woster, Patrick M

    2014-01-01

    The field of epigenetics has expanded rapidly to reveal multiple new targets for drug discovery. The functional elements of the epigenomic machinery can be categorized as writers, erasers and readers, and together these elements control cellular gene expression and homeostasis. It is increasingly clear that aberrations in the epigenome can underly a variety of diseases, and thus discovery of small molecules that modulate the epigenome in a specific manner is a viable approach to the discovery of new therapeutic agents. In this Digest, the components of epigenetic control of gene expression will be briefly summarized, and efforts to identify small molecules that modulate epigenetic processes will be described. Copyright © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  20. Interactions between epigenetics and metabolism in cancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jihye eYun

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Cancer progression is accompanied by widespread transcriptional changes and metabolic alterations. Although it is widely accepted that the origin of cancer can be traced to the mutations that accumulate over time, relatively recent evidence favors a similarly fundamental role for alterations in the epigenome during tumorigenesis. Changes in epigenetics that arise from post-translational modifications of histones and DNA, are exploited by cancer cells to upregulate and/or downregulate the expression levels of oncogenes and tumor suppressors, respectively. Although the mechanisms behind these modifications, in particular how they lead to gene silencing and activation, are still being understood, many enzymes that carry out post-translational modifications that alter epigenetics require metabolites as substrates or cofactors. As a result, their activities can be influenced by the metabolic state of the cell. The purpose of this review is to give an overview of cancer epigenetics and metabolism and provide examples of where they converge.

  1. Therapeutic perspectives of epigenetically active nutrients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remely, M; Lovrecic, L; de la Garza, A L; Migliore, L; Peterlin, B; Milagro, F I; Martinez, A J; Haslberger, A G

    2015-01-01

    Many nutrients are known for a wide range of activities in prevention and alleviation of various diseases. Recently, their potential role in regulating human health through effects on epigenetics has become evident, although specific mechanisms are still unclear. Thus, nutriepigenetics/nutriepigenomics has emerged as a new and promising field in current epigenetics research in the past few years. In particular, polyphenols, as part of the central dynamic interaction between the genome and the environment with specificity at physiological concentrations, are well known to affect mechanisms underlying human health. This review summarizes the effects of dietary compounds on epigenetic mechanisms in the regulation of gene expression including expression of enzymes and other molecules responsible for drug absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion in cancer, metabolic syndrome, neurodegenerative disorders and hormonal dysfunction. PMID:25046997

  2. Diagnostic and prognostic epigenetic biomarkers in cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa-Pinheiro, Pedro; Montezuma, Diana; Henrique, Rui; Jerónimo, Carmen

    2015-01-01

    Growing cancer incidence and mortality worldwide demands development of accurate biomarkers to perfect detection, diagnosis, prognostication and monitoring. Urologic (prostate, bladder, kidney), lung, breast and colorectal cancers are the most common and despite major advances in their characterization, this has seldom translated into biomarkers amenable for clinical practice. Epigenetic alterations are innovative cancer biomarkers owing to stability, frequency, reversibility and accessibility in body fluids, entailing great potential of assay development to assist in patient management. Several studies identified putative epigenetic cancer biomarkers, some of which have been commercialized. However, large multicenter validation studies are required to foster translation to the clinics. Herein we review the most promising epigenetic detection, diagnostic, prognostic and predictive biomarkers for the most common cancers.

  3. Interactions between epigenetics and metabolism in cancers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yun, Jihye; Johnson, Jared L.; Hanigan, Christin L.; Locasale, Jason W.

    2012-01-01

    Cancer progression is accompanied by widespread transcriptional changes and metabolic alterations. While it is widely accepted that the origin of cancer can be traced to the mutations that accumulate over time, relatively recent evidence favors a similarly fundamental role for alterations in the epigenome during tumorigenesis. Changes in epigenetics that arise from post-translational modifications of histones and DNA are exploited by cancer cells to upregulate and/or downregulate the expression levels of oncogenes and tumor suppressors, respectively. Although the mechanisms behind these modifications, in particular how they lead to gene silencing and activation, are still being understood, most of the enzymatic machinery of epigenetics require metabolites as substrates or cofactors. As a result, their activities can be influenced by the metabolic state of the cell. The purpose of this review is to give an overview of cancer epigenetics and metabolism and provide examples of where they converge.

  4. Cocaine triggers epigenetic alterations in the corticostriatal circuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadri-Vakili, Ghazaleh

    2015-12-02

    Acute and repeated exposure to cocaine induces long-lasting alterations in neural networks that underlie compulsive drug seeking and taking. Cocaine exposure triggers complex adaptations in the brain that are mediated by dynamic patterns of gene expression that are translated into enduring changes. Recently, epigenetic modifications have been unveiled as critical mechanisms underlying addiction that contribute to drug-induced plasticity by regulating gene expression. These alterations are also now linked to the heritability of cocaine-induced phenotypes. This review focuses on how changes in the epigenome, such as altered DNA methylation, histone modifications, and microRNAs, regulate transcription of specific genes that contribute to cocaine addiction. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Intergenerational epigenetic inheritance in reef-building corals

    KAUST Repository

    Liew, Yi Jin

    2018-02-22

    The notion that intergenerational or transgenerational inheritance operates solely through genetic means is slowly being eroded: epigenetic mechanisms have been shown to induce heritable changes in gene activity in plants and metazoans. Inheritance of DNA methylation provides a potential pathway for environmentally induced phenotypes to contribute to evolution of species and populations. However, in basal metazoans, it is unknown whether inheritance of CpG methylation patterns occurs across the genome (as in plants) or as rare exceptions (as in mammals). Here, we demonstrate genome-wide intergenerational transmission of CpG methylation patterns from parents to sperm and larvae in a reef-building coral. We also show variation in hypermethylated genes in corals from distinct environments, indicative of responses to variations in temperature and salinity. These findings support a role of DNA methylation in the transgenerational inheritance of traits in corals, which may extend to enhancing their capacity to adapt to climate change.

  6. Epigenetics and Vasculitis: a Comprehensive Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renauer, Paul; Coit, Patrick; Sawalha, Amr H

    2016-06-01

    Vasculitides represent a group of relatively rare systemic inflammatory diseases of the blood vessels. Despite recent progress in understanding the genetic basis and the underlying pathogenic mechanisms in vasculitis, the etiology and pathogenesis of vasculitis remain incompletely understood. Epigenetic dysregulation plays an important role in immune-mediated diseases, and the contribution of epigenetic aberrancies in vasculitis is increasingly being recognized. Histone modifications in the PR3 and MPO gene loci might be mechanistically involved in the pathogenesis of anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic antibody (ANCA)-associated vasculitis. Similarly, other studies revealed important epigenetic contribution to other vasculitides, including Kawasaki disease and IgA vasculitis. More recently, genome-wide epigenomic studies have been performed in several vasculitides. A recent genome-wide DNA methylation study uncovered an important role for epigenetic remodeling of cytoskeleton-related genes in the pathogenesis of Behçet's disease and suggested that reversal of some of these DNA methylation changes associates with disease remission. Genome-wide DNA methylation profiling characterized the inflammatory response in temporal artery tissue from patients with giant cell arteritis and showed increased activation of calcineurin/nuclear factor of activated T cells (NFAT) signaling, prompting the suggestion that a specific calcineurin/NFAT inhibitor that is well tolerated and with the added beneficial anti-platelet activity, such as dipyridamole, might be of therapeutic potential in giant cell arteritis. While epigenetic studies in systemic vasculitis are still in their infancy, currently available data clearly indicate that investigating the epigenetic mechanisms underlying these diseases will help to better understand the pathogenesis of vasculitis and provide novel targets for the development of disease biomarkers and new therapies.

  7. Epigenetic cell response to an influence of ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mikheev, A.N.; Gushcha, N.I.; Malinovskij, Yu.Yu.

    1999-01-01

    Importance of radiation modification of epigenetic activity in the general mechanism of radiobiological reactions is proved. Inheritable epigenetic changes induced by irradiation are one of the basic reasons of formation of the remote radiation pathology. It is noted that epigenetic inheritable changes of cells have the determined character distinguishing them mutation changes, being individual and not directed. It is underlined the ability of ionizing radiation to modify level of spontaneous genetic instability inherited in a number of cell generations on epigenetic mechanism [ru

  8. [The alchemy--epigenetic regulation of pluripotency].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bem, Joanna; Grabowska, Iwona

    2013-01-01

    Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) self renew their population, also they are pluripotent which means they can differentiate into any given cell type. In specific culture conditions they remain undifferentiated. On the cellular level pluripotency is determined by many transcription factors, e.g. Sox2, Nanog, Klf4, Oct4. Epigenetic regulation is also crucial for both self renewal and pluripotency. This review focuses on epigenetic mechanisms, among them DNA methylation, posttranslational histone modifications, ATP dependent chromatin remodeling and miRNAs interactions. These mechanisms affect embryonic stem cells functions keeping them poised for differentiation.

  9. [Infections and epigenetic changes in cancer].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corvalán, Alejandro H; Maturana, María José

    2016-01-01

    The role of epigenetics and infectious diseases at early stages of life influence pre-malignant lesions of cancer, in particular, gastric cancer, one of the most frequent tumours in Chile, Latin America, and worldwide. This article examines the role of H.pylori and epigenetic alterations (i.e. DNA methylation) at early stages of gastric cancer and proposes, from the paediatric point of view, strategies for prevention and early detection. Copyright © 2016. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U.

  10. Allosteric regulation of epigenetic modifying enzymes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zucconi, Beth E; Cole, Philip A

    2017-08-01

    Epigenetic enzymes including histone modifying enzymes are key regulators of gene expression in normal and disease processes. Many drug development strategies to target histone modifying enzymes have focused on ligands that bind to enzyme active sites, but allosteric pockets offer potentially attractive opportunities for therapeutic development. Recent biochemical studies have revealed roles for small molecule and peptide ligands binding outside of the active sites in modulating the catalytic activities of histone modifying enzymes. Here we highlight several examples of allosteric regulation of epigenetic enzymes and discuss the biological significance of these findings. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Epigenetic Modifications in Pediatric Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael James Burke

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Aberrant epigenetic modifications are well-recognized drivers for oncogenesis. Pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL is no exception and serves as a model toward the significant impact these heritable alterations can have in leukemogenesis. In this brief review, we will focus on the main aspects of epigenetics which control leukemogenesis in pediatric ALL, mainly DNA methylation, histone modification and microRNA alterations. As we continue to gain better understanding of the driving mechanisms for pediatric ALL at both diagnosis and relapse, therapeutic interventions directed toward these pathways and mechanisms can be harnessed and introduced into clinical trials for pediatric ALL.

  12. Nutrients and the Pancreas: An Epigenetic Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andee Weisbeck

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Pancreatic cancer is the fourth most common cause of cancer-related deaths with a dismal average five-year survival rate of six percent. Substitutional progress has been made in understanding how pancreatic cancer develops and progresses. Evidence is mounting which demonstrates that diet and nutrition are key factors in carcinogenesis. In particular, diets low in folate and high in fruits, vegetables, red/processed meat, and saturated fat have been identified as pancreatic cancer risk factors with a proposed mechanism involving epigenetic modifications or gene regulation. We review the current literature assessing the correlation between diet, epigenetics, and pancreatic cancer.

  13. Epigenetic Aspects of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrike Schmidt

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Development of psychiatric diseases such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD invokes, as with most complex diseases, both genetic and environmental factors. The era of genome-wide high throughput technologies has sparked the initiation of genotype screenings in large cohorts of diseased and control individuals, but had limited success in identification of disease causing genetic variants. It has become evident that these efforts at the genomic level need to be complemented with endeavours in elucidating the proteome, transcriptome and epigenetic profiles. Epigenetics is attractive in particular because there is accumulating evidence that the lasting impact of adverse life events is reflected in certain covalent modifications of the chromatin.

  14. Epigenetic dominance of prion conformers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eri Saijo

    2013-10-01

    the otherwise unfavorable U conformer. This epigenetic mechanism thus expands the range of selectable conformations that can be adopted by PrP, and therefore the variety of options for strain propagation.

  15. The medium reorganization energy for the charge transfer reactions in proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishtalik, Lev I

    2011-11-01

    A low static dielectric permittivity of proteins causes the low reorganization energies for the charge transfer reactions inside them. This reorganization energy does not depend on the pre-existing intraprotein electric field. The charge transferred inside the protein interacts with its aqueous surroundings; for many globular proteins, the effect of this surroundings on the reorganization energy is comparable with the effect of reorganization of the protein itself while for the charge transfer in the middle of membrane the aqueous phase plays a minor role. Reorganization energy depends strongly on the system considered, and hence there is no sense to speak on the "protein reorganization energy" as some permanent characteristic parameter. We employed a simple algorithm for calculation of the medium reorganization energy using the numerical solution of the Poisson-Boltzmann equation. Namely, the reaction field energy was computed in two versions - all media having optical dielectric permittivity, and all the media with the static one; the difference of these two quantities gives the reorganization energy. We have calculated reorganization energies for electron transfer in cytochrome c, various ammine-ruthenated cytochromes c, azurin, ferredoxin, cytochrome c oxidase, complex of methylamine dehydrogenase with amicyanin, and for proton transfer in α-chymotrypsin. It is shown that calculation of the medium reorganization energy can be a useful tool in analysis of the mechanisms of the charge transfer reactions in proteins. 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Epigenetics Europe conference. Munich, Germany, 8-9 September 2011.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeltsch, Albert

    2011-12-01

    At the Epigenetics Europe conference in Munich, Germany, held on 8-9 September 2011, 19 speakers from different European countries were presenting novel data and concepts on molecular epigenetics. The talks were mainly focused on questions of the generation, maintenance, flexibility and erasure of DNA methylation patterns in context of other epigenetic signals like histone tail modifications and ncRNAs.

  17. Introduction to the Special Section on Epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lester, Barry M.; Conradt, Elisabeth; Marsit, Carmen

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetics provides the opportunity to revolutionize our understanding of the role of genetics and the environment in explaining human behavior, although the use of epigenetics to study human behavior is just beginning. In this introduction, the authors present the basics of epigenetics in a way that is designed to make this exciting field…

  18. Forget the Parents: Epigenetic Reprogramming in Human Germ Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Meyenn, Ferdinand; Reik, Wolf

    2015-06-04

    Epigenetic reprogramming in the germline resets genomic potential and erases epigenetic memory. Three studies by Gkountela et al., Guo et al., and Tang et al. analyze the transcriptional and epigenetic landscape of human primordial germ cells, revealing a unique transcriptional network and progressive and conserved global erasure of DNA methylation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Advances on research epigenetic change of hybrid and polyploidy ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A large proportion of these variations are epigenetic in nature. Epigenetic can be defined as a change of the study in the regulation of gene activity and expression that are not driven by gene sequence information. However, the ramifications of epigenetic in plant biology are immense, yet unappreciated. In contrast to the ...

  20. Epigenetic alteration of sedimentary rocks at hydrogenic uranium deposit

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ding Wanlie; Shen Kefeng

    2001-01-01

    The author introduces the concept, the recognition criteria, the genesis and classification of the epigenetic alteration of sedimentary rocks in brief, and expounds the mineral-geochemical indications and characteristics of oxidation and reduction alterations in different geochemical zones in detail, and proposes the two models of ore-controlling zonation of epigenetic alteration. The authors finally introduce research methods of epigenetic alteration

  1. KNOX1 is expressed and epigenetically regulated during in vitro conditions in Agave spp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De-la-Peña, Clelia; Nic-Can, Geovanny; Ojeda, Gabriel; Herrera-Herrera, José L; López-Torres, Adolfo; Wrobel, Kazimierz; Robert-Díaz, Manuel L

    2012-11-05

    The micropropagation is a powerful tool to scale up plants of economical and agronomical importance, enhancing crop productivity. However, a small but growing body of evidence suggests that epigenetic mechanisms, such as DNA methylation and histone modifications, can be affected under the in vitro conditions characteristic of micropropagation. Here, we tested whether the adaptation to different in vitro systems (Magenta boxes and Bioreactors) modified epigenetically different clones of Agave fourcroydes and A. angustifolia. Furthermore, we assessed whether these epigenetic changes affect the regulatory expression of KNOTTED1-like HOMEOBOX (KNOX) transcription factors. To gain a better understanding of epigenetic changes during in vitro and ex vitro conditions in Agave fourcroydes and A. angustifolia, we analyzed global DNA methylation, as well as different histone modification marks, in two different systems: semisolid in Magenta boxes (M) and temporary immersion in modular Bioreactors (B). No significant difference was found in DNA methylation in A. fourcroydes grown in either M or B. However, when A. fourcroydes was compared with A. angustifolia, there was a two-fold difference in DNA methylation between the species, independent of the in vitro system used. Furthermore, we detected an absence or a low amount of the repressive mark H3K9me2 in ex vitro conditions in plants that were cultured earlier either in M or B. Moreover, the expression of AtqKNOX1 and AtqKNOX2, on A. fourcroydes and A. angustifolia clones, is affected during in vitro conditions. Therefore, we used Chromatin ImmunoPrecipitation (ChIP) to know whether these genes were epigenetically regulated. In the case of AtqKNOX1, the H3K4me3 and H3K9me2 were affected during in vitro conditions in comparison with AtqKNOX2. Agave clones plants with higher DNA methylation during in vitro conditions were better adapted to ex vitro conditions. In addition, A. fourcroydes and A. angustifolia clones displayed

  2. KNOX1 is expressed and epigenetically regulated during in vitro conditions in Agave spp

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    De-la-Peña Clelia

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The micropropagation is a powerful tool to scale up plants of economical and agronomical importance, enhancing crop productivity. However, a small but growing body of evidence suggests that epigenetic mechanisms, such as DNA methylation and histone modifications, can be affected under the in vitro conditions characteristic of micropropagation. Here, we tested whether the adaptation to different in vitro systems (Magenta boxes and Bioreactors modified epigenetically different clones of Agave fourcroydes and A. angustifolia. Furthermore, we assessed whether these epigenetic changes affect the regulatory expression of KNOTTED1-like HOMEOBOX (KNOX transcription factors. Results To gain a better understanding of epigenetic changes during in vitro and ex vitro conditions in Agave fourcroydes and A. angustifolia, we analyzed global DNA methylation, as well as different histone modification marks, in two different systems: semisolid in Magenta boxes (M and temporary immersion in modular Bioreactors (B. No significant difference was found in DNA methylation in A. fourcroydes grown in either M or B. However, when A. fourcroydes was compared with A. angustifolia, there was a two-fold difference in DNA methylation between the species, independent of the in vitro system used. Furthermore, we detected an absence or a low amount of the repressive mark H3K9me2 in ex vitro conditions in plants that were cultured earlier either in M or B. Moreover, the expression of AtqKNOX1 and AtqKNOX2, on A. fourcroydes and A. angustifolia clones, is affected during in vitro conditions. Therefore, we used Chromatin ImmunoPrecipitation (ChIP to know whether these genes were epigenetically regulated. In the case of AtqKNOX1, the H3K4me3 and H3K9me2 were affected during in vitro conditions in comparison with AtqKNOX2. Conclusions Agave clones plants with higher DNA methylation during in vitro conditions were better adapted to ex vitro conditions. In addition

  3. Epigenetic variability in the genetically uniform forest tree species Pinus pinea L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrique Sáez-Laguna

    Full Text Available There is an increasing interest in understanding the role of epigenetic variability in forest species and how it may contribute to their rapid adaptation to changing environments. In this study we have conducted a genome-wide analysis of cytosine methylation pattern in Pinus pinea, a species characterized by very low levels of genetic variation and a remarkable degree of phenotypic plasticity. DNA methylation profiles of different vegetatively propagated trees from representative natural Spanish populations of P. pinea were analyzed with the Methylation Sensitive Amplified Polymorphism (MSAP technique. A high degree of cytosine methylation was detected (64.36% of all scored DNA fragments. Furthermore, high levels of epigenetic variation were observed among the studied individuals. This high epigenetic variation found in P. pinea contrasted with the lack of genetic variation based on Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism (AFLP data. In this manner, variable epigenetic markers clearly discriminate individuals and differentiates two well represented populations while the lack of genetic variation revealed with the AFLP markers fail to differentiate at both, individual or population levels. In addition, the use of different replicated trees allowed identifying common polymorphic methylation sensitive MSAP markers among replicates of a given propagated tree. This set of MSAPs allowed discrimination of the 70% of the analyzed trees.

  4. Non-imprinted epigenetics in fetal and postnatal development and growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godfrey, Keith M; Lillycrop, Karen A; Burdge, Graham C; Gluckman, Peter D; Hanson, Mark A

    2013-01-01

    Recent evidence demonstrates that the environment in early life can have important effects on fetal and postnatal growth, on development and on risk of developing common non-communicable diseases in later life. In animals, the environment during early life induces altered phenotypes in ways which are influenced or mediated by epigenetic mechanisms. The latter include DNA methylation, covalent modifications of histones and non-coding RNAs. Most is known about DNA methylation changes, which are gene specific, include effects on non-imprinted genes and function at the level of individual CpG dinucleotides to alter gene expression. Preliminary evidence from human studies suggests a similar important role for epigenetic processes. Tuning of phenotype by the developmental environment has adaptive value because it attempts to match an individual's responses to the environment predicted to be experienced later; hence, such processes have been selected during evolution as conferring fitness advantage. When the phenotype is mismatched, e.g. from inaccurate nutritional cues from the mother or placenta before birth, or from rapid environmental change through improved socioeconomic conditions, risk of non-communicable diseases increases. Evidence is accruing that endocrine or nutritional interventions during early postnatal life can reverse epigenetic and phenotypic changes induced, for example, by unbalanced maternal diet during pregnancy. Elucidation of epigenetic processes may enable early intervention strategies to improve early development and growth. Copyright © 2013 Nestec Ltd., Vevey/S. Karger AG, Basel.

  5. Structural and functional reorganization of propriospinal connections promotes functional recovery after spinal cord injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linard Filli

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Axonal regeneration and fiber regrowth is limited in the adult central nervous system, but research over the last decades has revealed a high intrinsic capacity of brain and spinal cord circuits to adapt and reorganize after smaller injuries or denervation. Short-distance fiber growth and synaptic rewiring was found in cortex, brain stem and spinal cord and could be associated with restoration of sensorimotor functions that were impaired by the injury. Such processes of structural plasticity were initially observed in the corticospinal system following spinal cord injury or stroke, but recent studies showed an equally high potential for structural and functional reorganization in reticulospinal, rubrospinal or propriospinal projections. Here we review the lesion-induced plastic changes in the propriospinal pathways, and we argue that they represent a key mechanism triggering sensorimotor recovery upon incomplete spinal cord injury. The formation or strengthening of spinal detour pathways bypassing supraspinal commands around the lesion site to the denervated spinal cord were identified as prominent neural substrate inducing substantial motor recovery in different species from mice to primates. Indications for the existence of propriospinal bypasses were also found in humans after cortical stroke. It is mandatory for current research to dissect the biological mechanisms underlying spinal circuit remodeling and to investigate how these processes can be stimulated in an optimal way by therapeutic interventions (e.g., fiber-growth enhancing interventions, rehabilitation. This knowledge will clear the way for the development of novel strategies targeting the remarkable plastic potential of propriospinal circuits to maximize functional recovery after spinal cord injury.

  6. [A critique of the epigenetic theory of evolution].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pozdniakov, A A

    2009-01-01

    Comparison of fundamentals of the synthetic (STE) and the epigenetic (ETE) theories of evolution indicates that they presume different approaches to description of evolutionary process, STE presuming its mechanistic (reductional) description and ETE presuming its organismic (holistic) description. The following system of postulates can be suggested for ETE: evolutionary changes begin at the phenotype level, the species represents an elementary evolutionary unit, changes in developmental (ontogenetic) system represents an elementary evolutionary phenomenon, evolution is a non-uniform process. A balanced system of organization is very stable, as it is presumed by A.P. Rasnitsyn's metaphor of adaptive compromise, so emergence of a new taxon is possible due to destabilization stage under reduced competitive condition. Emergence of an evolutionary novelty is non-adaptive because of retarding effect of the adaptive compromise. An elementary evolutionary cycle includes the following phases: (1) destabilization, i.e. appearance ofmorphoses resulting from changes of environmental conditions (inadaptive phase), (2) stabilization via genetic assimilation of one of the morphoses (euadaptive phase), (3) stasis. However, genetic assimilation is not obligatory precondition. The notions of inadaptation and euadaptation differ from their original meanings of V. O. Kovalevsky. Empirical data provided by D. L. Grodnitsky do not support a postulated taxogenetic process, i.e., transition from one to another phenotypic stages, so applications of these notions to description of the phases of elementary evolutionary cycle are incorrect. More profound taxon concept as well as methodology of empirical interpretations are needed for further development of ETE.

  7. CROSSOVERS BETWEEN EPIGENESIS AND EPIGENETICS. A MULTICENTER APPROACH TO THE HISTORY OF EPIGENETICS (1901-1975).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Rossella; Frezza, Giulia

    2014-01-01

    The origin of epigenetics has been traditionally traced back to Conrad Hal Waddington's foundational work in 1940s. The aim of the present paper is to reveal a hidden history of epigenetics, by means of a multicenter approach. Our analysis shows that genetics and embryology in early XX century--far from being non-communicating vessels--shared similar questions, as epitomized by Thomas Hunt Morgan's works. Such questions were rooted in the theory of epigenesis and set the scene for the development of epigenetics. Since the 1950s, the contribution of key scientists (Mary Lyon and Eduardo Scarano), as well as the discussions at the international conference of Gif-sur-Yvette (1957) paved the way for three fundamental shifts of focus: 1. From the whole embryo to the gene; 2. From the gene to the complex extranuclear processes of development; 3. From cytoplasmic inheritance to the epigenetics mechanisms.

  8. Conference Scene: epigenetics eh! The first formal meeting of the Canadian epigenetics community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Underhill, Alan; Hendzel, Michael J

    2011-08-01

    In recognition of Canada's longstanding interest in epigenetics - and a particular linguistic interjection - the inaugural 'Epigenetics, Eh!' conference was held between 4-7 May 2011 in London, Ontario. The meeting struck an excellent balance between Canadian and international leaders in epigenetic research while also providing a venue to showcase up-and-coming talent. Almost without exception, presentations touched on the wide-ranging and severe consequences of epigenetic dysfunction, as well as current and emerging therapeutic opportunities. While gaining a deeper understanding of how DNA and histone modifications, together with multiple classes of ncRNAs, act to functionalize our genome, participants were also provided with a glimpse of the astounding complexity of chromatin structure, challenging existing dogma.

  9. Towards incorporating epigenetic mechanisms into carcinogen identification and evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herceg, Zdenko; Lambert, Marie-Pierre; van Veldhoven, Karin; Demetriou, Christiana; Vineis, Paolo; Smith, Martyn T; Straif, Kurt; Wild, Christopher P

    2013-09-01

    Remarkable progress in the field of epigenetics has turned academic, medical and public attention to the potential applications of these new advances in medicine and various fields of biomedical research. The result is a broader appreciation of epigenetic phenomena in the a etiology of common human diseases, most notably cancer. These advances also represent an exciting opportunity to incorporate epigenetics and epigenomics into carcinogen identification and safety assessment. Current epigenetic studies, including major international sequencing projects, are expected to generate information for establishing the 'normal' epigenome of tissues and cell types as well as the physiological variability of the epigenome against which carcinogen exposure can be assessed. Recently, epigenetic events have emerged as key mechanisms in cancer development, and while our search of the Monograph Volume 100 revealed that epigenetics have played a modest role in evaluating human carcinogens by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) Monographs so far, epigenetic data might play a pivotal role in the future. Here, we review (i) the current status of incorporation of epigenetics in carcinogen evaluation in the IARC Monographs Programme, (ii) potential modes of action for epigenetic carcinogens, (iii) current in vivo and in vitro technologies to detect epigenetic carcinogens, (iv) genomic regions and epigenetic modifications and their biological consequences and (v) critical technological and biological issues in assessment of epigenetic carcinogens. We also discuss the issues related to opportunities and challenges in the application of epigenetic testing in carcinogen identification and evaluation. Although the application of epigenetic assays in carcinogen evaluation is still in its infancy, important data are being generated and valuable scientific resources are being established that should catalyse future applications of epigenetic testing.

  10. Towards incorporating epigenetic mechanisms into carcinogen identification and evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herceg, Zdenko

    2013-01-01

    Remarkable progress in the field of epigenetics has turned academic, medical and public attention to the potential applications of these new advances in medicine and various fields of biomedical research. The result is a broader appreciation of epigenetic phenomena in the a etiology of common human diseases, most notably cancer. These advances also represent an exciting opportunity to incorporate epigenetics and epigenomics into carcinogen identification and safety assessment. Current epigenetic studies, including major international sequencing projects, are expected to generate information for establishing the ‘normal’ epigenome of tissues and cell types as well as the physiological variability of the epigenome against which carcinogen exposure can be assessed. Recently, epigenetic events have emerged as key mechanisms in cancer development, and while our search of the Monograph Volume 100 revealed that epigenetics have played a modest role in evaluating human carcinogens by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) Monographs so far, epigenetic data might play a pivotal role in the future. Here, we review (i) the current status of incorporation of epigenetics in carcinogen evaluation in the IARC Monographs Programme, (ii) potential modes of action for epigenetic carcinogens, (iii) current in vivo and in vitro technologies to detect epigenetic carcinogens, (iv) genomic regions and epigenetic modifications and their biological consequences and (v) critical technological and biological issues in assessment of epigenetic carcinogens. We also discuss the issues related to opportunities and challenges in the application of epigenetic testing in carcinogen identification and evaluation. Although the application of epigenetic assays in carcinogen evaluation is still in its infancy, important data are being generated and valuable scientific resources are being established that should catalyse future applications of epigenetic testing. PMID:23749751

  11. Epigenetic reprogramming: Prdm14 hits the accelerator

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geijsen, N.

    2012-01-01

    The EMBO Journal (2012) 31, 2247 - 2248 doi:10.1038/emboj.2012.117 Published online: 20 April 2012 There is an Article (May 2012) associated with this Have you seen?. Epigenetic reprogramming: Prdm14 hits the accelerator Niels Geijsen1 Hubrecht Institute KNAW, School of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht

  12. Epigenetics ELSI: Darker Than You Think?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joly, Yann; So, Derek; Saulnier, Katie; Dyke, Stephanie O M

    2016-10-01

    Emerging ethical, legal, and social implications (ELSI) scholarship in epigenetics has focused largely on hypothetical issues involving institutional racism, discrimination, and eugenics. To avoid an unwarranted backlash against this promising research field, we encourage a more balanced ELSI discussion conveying the full spectrum of issues faced by stakeholders. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Epigenetics of inflammation, maternal infection and nutrition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Studies have demonstrated that epigenetic changes such as DNA methylation, histone modification, and chromatin remodeling are linked to an increased inflammatory response as well as increased risk for chronic disease development. A few studies have begun to investigate whether dietary nutrients play...

  14. Dietary effects on adipocyte metabolism and epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obesity risk appears to be perpetuated across generations by way of programmed DNA alterations that occur in utero and that affect gene expression throughout the life span. Studies have demonstrated associations of maternal obesity and epigenetic changes, such as DNA methylation, histone modifica...

  15. Epigenetics: Making your mark on DNA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harada, Bryan T.; He, Chuan

    2017-11-01

    Understanding the biological roles of modifications to DNA, RNA and proteins is critical to revealing how cells regulate gene expression in development and disease. Two papers now present a combination of new tools and discoveries that could enable biologists and chemical biologists to better study epigenetic regulation in mammals.

  16. Epigenetics as a First Exit Problem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aurell, E.; Sneppen, K.

    2002-01-01

    We develop a framework to discuss the stability of epigenetic states as first exit problems in dynamical systems with noise. We consider in particular the stability of the lysogenic state of the λ prophage. The formalism defines a quantitative measure of robustness of inherited states.

  17. Epigenetics and the Social Work Imperative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Combs-Orme, Terri

    2013-01-01

    "Epigenesis" is the biochemical process through which some genes are expressed and others remain silent, and it reinforces and explains the powerful impact that the environment has on human development. Epigenetic effects occur not only through diet, chemical exposure, and high levels of environmental stress, but also through chronic poverty and…

  18. Metabolic-epigenetic crosstalk in macrophage activation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baardman, Jeroen; Licht, Iris; de Winther, Menno P. J.; van den Bossche, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetic enzymes are emerging as crucial controllers of macrophages, innate immune cells that determine the outcome of many inflammatory diseases. Recent studies demonstrate that the activity of particular chromatin-modifying enzymes is regulated by the availability of specific metabolites like

  19. Epigenetics: mechanisms and implications for diabetic complications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Mark E; El-Osta, Assam

    2010-12-10

    Epigenetic modifications regulate critical functions that underlie chromosome metabolism. Understanding the molecular changes to chromatin structure and the functional relationship with altered signaling pathways is now considered to represent an important conceptual challenge to explain diabetes and the phenomenon of metabolic or hyperglycemic memory. Although it remains unknown as to the specific molecular mechanisms whereby hyperglycemic memory leads to the development of diabetic vascular complications, emerging evidence now indicates that critical gene-activating epigenetic changes may confer future cell memories. Chemical modification of the H3 histone tail of lysine 4 and 9 has recently been identified with gene expression conferred by hyperglycemia. The persistence of these key epigenetic determinants in models of glycemic variability and the development of diabetic complications has been associated with these primary findings. Transient hyperglycemia promotes gene-activating epigenetic changes and signaling events critical in the development and progression of vascular complications. As for the role of specific epigenomic changes, it is postulated that further understanding enzymes involved in writing and erasing chemical changes could transform our understanding of the pathways implicated in diabetic vascular injury providing new therapeutic strategies.

  20. Epigenetic learning in non-neural organisms

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Prakash

    2008-09-19

    Sep 19, 2008 ... the organisms are able to respond to a thousand-fold lower concentration of the hormone following an initial exposure to a higher concentration. An epigenetic memory based on. DNA methylation probably underlies the remarkably stable transmission of enhanced sensitivity to serotonin (Csaba and.

  1. Epigenetic regulation of cystatins in cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivenbark, Ashley G; Coleman, William B

    2009-01-01

    Cystatins function as cysteine protease inhibitors, are expressed in numerous cell types, and regulate a number of physiological processes. Four cystatins have been extensively studied: cystatin A, cystatin B, cystatin C, and cystatin M. Aberrant regulation of cystatins occurs in a number of diseases, including cancer and certain neurodegenerative disorders. Recent advances in the understanding of cystatin function suggest that these proteins may regulate promotion or suppression of tumor growth, invasion, and metastasis. Cancer is a disease of abnormal gene expression and cancer cells exhibit aberrant epigenetic events (such as DNA methylation), leading to gene silencing. Cystatins are epigenetically silenced through DNA methylation-dependent mechanisms in several forms of cancer, including breast, pancreatic, brain, and lung. These findings suggest that DNA methylation-dependent epigenetic mechanisms may play an important role in the loss of cystatin gene expression and protein function during neoplastic transformation and/or tumor progression. This review summarizes the biological processes in which cystatins function, focuses on the neoplastic events that involve aberrant regulation of cystatins, and discusses the possible epigenetic regulation of cystatins in cancer.

  2. Epigenetics: from covalent modifications to small RNAs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaaij, L.J.T.

    2013-01-01

    The role of epigenetic modifications, for instance DNA methylation, in cell fate transition is tremendous. In this thesis we present two studies in which we present genome wide in vivo methylomes of the small intestinal (SI) stem cell, a close descendent and villus and of 4 stages during zebrafish

  3. Epigenetic regulation of caloric restriction in aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Michael

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The molecular mechanisms of aging are the subject of much research and have facilitated potential interventions to delay aging and aging-related degenerative diseases in humans. The aging process is frequently affected by environmental factors, and caloric restriction is by far the most effective and established environmental manipulation for extending lifespan in various animal models. However, the precise mechanisms by which caloric restriction affects lifespan are still not clear. Epigenetic mechanisms have recently been recognized as major contributors to nutrition-related longevity and aging control. Two primary epigenetic codes, DNA methylation and histone modification, are believed to dynamically influence chromatin structure, resulting in expression changes of relevant genes. In this review, we assess the current advances in epigenetic regulation in response to caloric restriction and how this affects cellular senescence, aging and potential extension of a healthy lifespan in humans. Enhanced understanding of the important role of epigenetics in the control of the aging process through caloric restriction may lead to clinical advances in the prevention and therapy of human aging-associated diseases.

  4. The placental gateway of maternal transgenerational epigenetic ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    S. PURNIMA SAILASREE

    2017-07-04

    Jul 4, 2017 ... Bocheva G. and Boyadjieva N. 2011 Epigenetic regulation of fetal bone development and placental transfer of nutrients: progress for osteoporosis. Interdiscip. Toxicol. 4, 167–172. Broad K. D. and Keverne E. B. 2011 Placental protection of the fetal brain during short-term food deprivation. Proc. Natl. Acad.

  5. [Epigenetic alterations in acute lymphoblastic leukemia].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarrete-Meneses, María Del Pilar; Pérez-Vera, Patricia

    Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the most common childhood cancer. It is well-known that genetic alterations constitute the basis for the etiology of ALL. However, genetic abnormalities are not enough for the complete development of the disease, and additional alterations such as epigenetic modifications are required. Such alterations, like DNA methylation, histone modifications, and noncoding RNA regulation have been identified in ALL. DNA hypermethylation in promoter regions is one of the most frequent epigenetic modifications observed in ALL. This modification frequently leads to gene silencing in tumor suppressor genes, and in consequence, contributes to leukemogenesis. Alterations in histone remodeling proteins have also been detected in ALL, such as the overexpression of histone deacetylases enzymes, and alteration of acetyltransferases and methyltransferases. ALL also shows alteration in the expression of miRNAs, and in consequence, the modification in the expression of their target genes. All of these epigenetic modifications are key events in the malignant transformation since they lead to the deregulation of oncogenes as BLK, WNT5B and WISP1, and tumor suppressors such as FHIT, CDKN2A, CDKN2B, and TP53, which alter fundamental cellular processes and potentially lead to the development of ALL. Both genetic and epigenetic alterations contribute to the development and evolution of ALL. Copyright © 2017 Hospital Infantil de México Federico Gómez. Publicado por Masson Doyma México S.A. All rights reserved.

  6. Nonlinear Epigenetic Variance: Review and Simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kan, Kees-Jan; Ploeger, Annemie; Raijmakers, Maartje E. J.; Dolan, Conor V.; van Der Maas, Han L. J.

    2010-01-01

    We present a review of empirical evidence that suggests that a substantial portion of phenotypic variance is due to nonlinear (epigenetic) processes during ontogenesis. The role of such processes as a source of phenotypic variance in human behaviour genetic studies is not fully appreciated. In addition to our review, we present simulation studies…

  7. Mitochondrial epigenetics : an overlooked layer of regulation?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Wijst, Monique G. P.; Rots, Marianne G.

    Despite decades of research, mitochondrial epigenetics remains a controversial notion. Recent findings, however, indicate that dysfunctional mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) methylation could underlie aging and disease. Unraveling such a level of regulation will be essential in the understanding of and in

  8. Epigenetic architecture and miRNA: reciprocal regulators

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wiklund, Erik Digman; Kjems, Jørgen; Clark, Susan

    2010-01-01

    Deregulation of epigenetic and microRNA (miRNA) pathways are emerging as key events in carcinogenesis. miRNA genes can be epigenetically regulated and miRNAs can themselves repress key enzymes that drive epigenetic remodeling. Epigenetic and miRNA functions are thus tightly interconnected......RNAs) are considered especially promising in clinical applications, and their biogenesis and function is a subject of active research. In this review, the current status of epigenetic miRNA regulation is summarized and future therapeutic prospects in the field are discussed with a focus on cancer....

  9. Epigenetic control of cell identity and plasticity

    KAUST Repository

    Orlando, Valerio

    2014-04-02

    The DNA centered dogma for genetic information and cell identity is now evolving into a much more complex and flexible dimension provided by the discovery of the Epigenome. This comprises those chromosome structural and topological components that complement DNA information and contribute to genome functional organization. Current concept is that the Epigenome constitutes the dynamic molecular interface allowing the Genome to interact with the Environment. Exploring how the genome interacts with the environment is a key to fully understand cellular and complex organism mechanisms of adaptation and plasticity. Our work focuses on the role of an essential, specialized group or chromatin associated proteins named Polycomb (PcG) that control maintenance of transcription programs during development and in adult life. In particular PcG proteins exert epigenetic “memory” function by modifying chromosome structures at various levels to maintain gene silencing in particular through cell division. While in the past decade substantial progress was made in understanding PcG mechanisms acting in development and partially during cell cycle, very little is known about their role in adult post-mitotic tissues and more in general the role of the epigenome in adaptation. To this, we studied the role of PcG in the context of mammalian skeletal muscle cell differentiation. We previously reported specific dynamics of PRC2 proteins in myoblasts and myotubes, in particular the dynamics of PcG Histone H3 K27 Methyl Transferases (HMT), EZH2 and EZH1, the latter apparently replacing for EZH2 in differentiated myotubes. Ezh1 protein, although almost identical to Ezh2, shows a weak H3K27 HMT activity and its primary function remains elusive. Recent ChIPseq studies performed in differentiating muscle cells revealed that Ezh1 associates with active and not repressed regulatory regions to control RNA pol II elongation. Since H3K27 tri-methylation levels are virtually steady in non

  10. Magnetic resonance imaging research progress on brain functional reorganization after peripheral nerve injury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang Weiwei; Liu Hanqiu

    2013-01-01

    In the recent years, with the development of functional magnetic resonance imaging technology the brain plasticity and functional reorganization are hot topics in the central nervous system imaging studies. Brain functional reorganization and rehabilitation after peripheral nerve injury may have certain regularity. In this paper, the progress of brain functional magnetic resonance imaging technology and its applications in the world wide clinical and experimental researches of the brain functional reorganization after peripheral nerve injury is are reviewed. (authors)

  11. Genetic Determinants of Epigenetic Patterns: Providing Insight into Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cazaly, Emma; Charlesworth, Jac; Dickinson, Joanne L; Holloway, Adele F

    2015-03-26

    The field of epigenetics and our understanding of the mechanisms that regulate the establishment, maintenance and heritability of epigenetic patterns continue to grow at a remarkable rate. This information is providing increased understanding of the role of epigenetic changes in disease, insight into the underlying causes of these epigenetic changes and revealing new avenues for therapeutic intervention. Epigenetic modifiers are increasingly being pursued as therapeutic targets in a range of diseases, with a number of agents targeting epigenetic modifications already proving effective in diseases such as cancer. Although it is well established that DNA mutations and aberrant expression of epigenetic modifiers play a key role in disease, attention is now turning to the interplay between genetic and epigenetic factors in complex disease etiology. The role of genetic variability in determining epigenetic profiles, which can then be modified by environmental and stochastic factors, is becoming more apparent. Understanding the interplay between genetic and epigenetic factors is likely to aid in identifying individuals most likely to benefit from epigenetic therapies. This goal is coming closer to realization because of continual advances in laboratory and statistical tools enabling improvements in the integration of genomic, epigenomic and phenotypic data.

  12. Understanding Neurological Disease Mechanisms in the Era of Epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qureshi, Irfan A.; Mehler, Mark F.

    2015-01-01

    The burgeoning field of epigenetics is making a significant impact on our understanding of brain evolution, development, and function. In fact, it is now clear that epigenetic mechanisms promote seminal neurobiological processes, ranging from neural stem cell maintenance and differentiation to learning and memory. At the molecular level, epigenetic mechanisms regulate the structure and activity of the genome in response to intracellular and environmental cues, including the deployment of cell type–specific gene networks and those underlying synaptic plasticity. Pharmacological and genetic manipulation of epigenetic factors can, in turn, induce remarkable changes in neural cell identity and cognitive and behavioral phenotypes. Not surprisingly, it is also becoming apparent that epigenetics is intimately involved in neurological disease pathogenesis. Herein, we highlight emerging paradigms for linking epigenetic machinery and processes with neurological disease states, including how (1) mutations in genes encoding epigenetic factors cause disease, (2) genetic variation in genes encoding epigenetic factors modify disease risk, (3) abnormalities in epigenetic factor expression, localization, or function are involved in disease pathophysiology, (4) epigenetic mechanisms regulate disease-associated genomic loci, gene products, and cellular pathways, and (5) differential epigenetic profiles are present in patient-derived central and peripheral tissues. PMID:23571666

  13. Comparative in silico profiling of epigenetic modifiers in human tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Son, Mi-Young; Jung, Cho-Rok; Kim, Dae-Soo; Cho, Hyun-Soo

    2018-04-06

    The technology of tissue differentiation from human pluripotent stem cells has attracted attention as a useful resource for regenerative medicine, disease modeling and drug development. Recent studies have suggested various key factors and specific culture methods to improve the successful tissue differentiation and efficient generation of human induced pluripotent stem cells. Among these methods, epigenetic regulation and epigenetic signatures are regarded as an important hurdle to overcome during reprogramming and differentiation. Thus, in this study, we developed an in silico epigenetic panel and performed a comparative analysis of epigenetic modifiers in the RNA-seq results of 32 human tissues. We demonstrated that an in silico epigenetic panel can identify epigenetic modifiers in order to overcome epigenetic barriers to tissue-specific differentiation.

  14. Epigenetics: general characteristics and implications for oral health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji-Yun Seo

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Genetic information such as DNA sequences has been limited to fully explain mechanisms of gene regulation and disease process. Epigenetic mechanisms, which include DNA methylation, histone modification and non-coding RNAs, can regulate gene expression and affect progression of disease. Although studies focused on epigenetics are being actively investigated in the field of medicine and biology, epigenetics in dental research is at the early stages. However, studies on epigenetics in dentistry deserve attention because epigenetic mechanisms play important roles in gene expression during tooth development and may affect oral diseases. In addition, understanding of epigenetic alteration is important for developing new therapeutic methods. This review article aims to outline the general features of epigenetic mechanisms and describe its future implications in the field of dentistry.

  15. Epigenetic modifications as regulatory elements of autophagy in cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sui, Xinbing; Zhu, Jing; Zhou, Jichun; Wang, Xian; Li, Da; Han, Weidong; Fang, Yong; Pan, Hongming

    2015-05-01

    Epigenetic modifications have been considered as hallmarks of cancer and play an important role in tumor initiation and development. Epigenetic mechanisms, including DNA methylation, histone modifications, and microRNAs, may regulate cell cycle and apoptosis, as well as macroautophagy (hereafter referred to as autophagy). Autophagy, as a crucial cellular homeostatic mechanism, performs a dual role, having pro-survival or pro-death properties. A variety of signaling pathways including epigenetic control have been implicated in the upregulation or downregulation of autophagy. However, the role of epigenetic regulation in autophagy is still less well acknowledged. Recent studies have linked epigenetic control to the autophagic process. Some epigenetic modifiers are also involved in the regulation of autophagy and potentiate the efficacy of traditional therapeutics. Thus, understanding the novel functions of epigenetic control in autophagy may allow us to develop potential therapeutic approaches for cancer treatment. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Molecular and Biochemical Methods Useful for the Epigenetic Characterization of Chromatin-Associated Proteins in Bivalve Molluscs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ciro Rivera-Casas

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Bivalve molluscs constitute a ubiquitous taxonomic group playing key functions in virtually all ecosystems, and encompassing critical commercial relevance. Along with a sessile and filter-feeding lifestyle in most cases, these characteristics make bivalves model sentinel organisms routinely used for environmental monitoring studies in aquatic habitats. The study of epigenetic mechanisms linking environmental exposure and specific physiological responses (i.e., environmental epigenetics stands out as a very innovative monitoring strategy, given the role of epigenetic modifications in acclimatization and adaptation. Furthermore, the heritable nature of many of those modifications constitutes a very promising avenue to explore the applicability of epigenetic conditioning and selection in management and restoration strategies. Chromatin provides a framework for the study of environmental epigenetic responses. Unfortunately, chromatin and epigenetic information are very limited in most non-traditional model organisms and even completely lacking in most environmentally and ecologically relevant organisms. The present work aims to provide a comprehensive and reproducible experimental workflow for the study of bivalve chromatin. First, a series of guidelines for the molecular isolation of genes encoding chromatin-associated proteins is provided, including information on primers suitable for conventional PCR, Rapid Amplification of cDNA Ends (RACE, genome walking and quantitative PCR (qPCR experiments. This section is followed by the description of methods specifically developed for the analysis of histone and SNBP proteins in different bivalve tissues, including protein extraction, purification, separation and immunodetection. Lastly, information about available antibodies, their specificity and performance is also provided. The tools and protocols described here complement current epigenetic analyses (usually limited to DNA methylation by incorporating

  17. Potential of epigenetic therapies in the management of solid tumors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valdespino V

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Victor Valdespino,1 Patricia M Valdespino2 1Health Attention Department, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Mexico; 2Bacterial Ecology and Epigenetics Laboratory, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico Abstract: Cancer is a complex disease with both genetic and epigenetic origins. The growing field of epigenetics has contributed to our understanding of oncogenesis and tumor progression, and has allowed the development of novel therapeutic drugs. First-generation epigenetic inhibitor drugs have obtained modest clinical results in two types of hematological malignancy. Second-generation epigenetic inhibitors are in development, and have intrinsically greater selectivity for their molecular targets. Solid tumors are more genetic and epigenetically complex than hematological malignancies, but the transcriptome and epigenome biomarkers have been identified for many of these malignancies. This solid tumor molecular aberration profile may be modified using specific or quasi-specific epidrugs together with conventional and innovative anticancer treatments. In this critical review, we briefly analyze the strategies to select the targeted epigenetic changes, enumerate the second-generation epigenetic inhibitors, and describe the main signs indicating the potential of epigenetic therapies in the management of solid tumors. We also highlight the work of consortia or academic organizations that support the undertaking of human epigenetic therapeutic projects as well as some examples of transcriptome/epigenome profile determination in clinical assessment of cancer patients treated with epidrugs. There is a good chance that epigenetic therapies will be able to be used in patients with solid tumors in the future. This may happen soon through collaboration of diverse scientific groups, making the selection of targeted epigenetic aberration(s more rapid, the design and probe of drug candidates, accelerating in vitro and in vivo assays, and

  18. Consideration of epigenetic responses at organisms chronically exposed to low levels of radioactive substances

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gombeau, Kevin

    2015-01-01

    This work integrates within the general framework of the European program COMET (7. Framework Programme EURATOM) and aims to assess the epigenetic responses, and particularly DNA methylation, during chronic exposure to low levels of radioactive materials within two particularly representative contexts of radioecological issues (i.e. uranium mining area and Fukushima post-accidental context). During a first experiment, zebra fish (Danio rerio) were exposed in laboratory controlled conditions to environmentally relevant concentrations of depleted uranium: 2 and 20 μg L -1 . This experiment allowed an impact on the genomic DNA methylation to be demonstrated, mainly in exposed males, which increased with the duration and level of exposure. In a second experiment, we observed an impact on DNA methylation patterns in the progeny of exposed parents, as well as a perturbation of transcriptomics (i.e. epigenetic processes, DNA damage signaling and repair pathways, embryogenesis) and histological damage in larvae skeletal muscle from exposed parents. The methods developed were applied to the second context focusing on the study of biological effects induced by radionuclides emitted following the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident. The analyses performed on the Japanese tree frog (Hyla japonica) revealed a positive correlation between the total dose of radiation absorbed by these frogs (correlated to 137 Cs accumulation), hyper-methylation of genomic DNA as well as increasing damage to mitochondrial DNA. This work highlighted the sensitivity of epigenetic responses in different biological models exposed to low levels of radionuclides. Additionally, these epigenetic modifications are stable over the time and involved in the transfer of the parental toxicity of depleted uranium. As such, the epigenetic marks could be used to further characterize adaptation mechanisms and potential trans-generational effects induced by radionuclides. (author)

  19. Tinnitus does not require Macroscopic Tonotopic Map Reorganization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dave R.M. Langers

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available The pathophysiology underlying tinnitus, a hearing disorder characterized by the chronic perception of phantom sound, has been related to aberrant plastic reorganization of the central auditory system. More specifically, tinnitus is thought to involve changes in the tonotopic representation of sound. In the present study we used high-resolution functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to determine tonotopic maps in the auditory cortex of twenty patients with tinnitus but otherwise near-normal hearing, and compared these to equivalent outcomes from twenty healthy controls with matched hearing thresholds. Using a dedicated experimental paradigm and data-driven analysis techniques, multiple tonotopic gradients could be robustly distinguished in both hemispheres, arranged in a pattern consistent with previous findings. Yet, maps were not found to significantly differ between the two groups in any way. In particular, we found no evidence for an overrepresentation of high sound frequencies, matching the tinnitus pitch. A significant difference in evoked response magnitude was found near the low-frequency tonotopic endpoint on the lateral extreme of left Heschl’s gyrus. Our results suggest that macroscopic tonotopic reorganization in the auditory cortex is not required for the emergence of tinnitus, and is not typical for tinnitus that accompanies normal hearing to mild hearing loss.

  20. From network structure to network reorganization: implications for adult neurogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider-Mizell, Casey M.; Parent, Jack M.; Ben-Jacob, Eshel; Zochowski, Michal R.; Sander, Leonard M.

    2010-12-01

    Networks can be dynamical systems that undergo functional and structural reorganization. One example of such a process is adult hippocampal neurogenesis, in which new cells are continuously born and incorporate into the existing network of the dentate gyrus region of the hippocampus. Many of these introduced cells mature and become indistinguishable from established neurons, joining the existing network. Activity in the network environment is known to promote birth, survival and incorporation of new cells. However, after epileptogenic injury, changes to the connectivity structure around the neurogenic niche are known to correlate with aberrant neurogenesis. The possible role of network-level changes in the development of epilepsy is not well understood. In this paper, we use a computational model to investigate how the structural and functional outcomes of network reorganization, driven by addition of new cells during neurogenesis, depend on the original network structure. We find that there is a stable network topology that allows the network to incorporate new neurons in a manner that enhances activity of the persistently active region, but maintains global network properties. In networks having other connectivity structures, new cells can greatly alter the distribution of firing activity and destroy the initial activity patterns. We thus find that new cells are able to provide focused enhancement of network only for small-world networks with sufficient inhibition. Network-level deviations from this topology, such as those caused by epileptogenic injury, can set the network down a path that develops toward pathological dynamics and aberrant structural integration of new cells.

  1. Self-repairing symmetry in jellyfish through mechanically driven reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrams, Michael J; Basinger, Ty; Yuan, William; Guo, Chin-Lin; Goentoro, Lea

    2015-06-30

    What happens when an animal is injured and loses important structures? Some animals simply heal the wound, whereas others are able to regenerate lost parts. In this study, we report a previously unidentified strategy of self-repair, where moon jellyfish respond to injuries by reorganizing existing parts, and rebuilding essential body symmetry, without regenerating what is lost. Specifically, in response to arm amputation, the young jellyfish of Aurelia aurita rearrange their remaining arms, recenter their manubria, and rebuild their muscular networks, all completed within 12 hours to 4 days. We call this process symmetrization. We find that symmetrization is not driven by external cues, cell proliferation, cell death, and proceeded even when foreign arms were grafted on. Instead, we find that forces generated by the muscular network are essential. Inhibiting pulsation using muscle relaxants completely, and reversibly, blocked symmetrization. Furthermore, we observed that decreasing pulse frequency using muscle relaxants slowed symmetrization, whereas increasing pulse frequency by lowering the magnesium concentration in seawater accelerated symmetrization. A mathematical model that describes the compressive forces from the muscle contraction, within the context of the elastic response from the mesoglea and the ephyra geometry, can recapitulate the recovery of global symmetry. Thus, self-repair in Aurelia proceeds through the reorganization of existing parts, and is driven by forces generated by its own propulsion machinery. We find evidence for symmetrization across species of jellyfish (Chrysaora pacifica, Mastigias sp., and Cotylorhiza tuberculata).

  2. From network structure to network reorganization: implications for adult neurogenesis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schneider-Mizell, Casey M; Zochowski, Michal R; Sander, Leonard M; Parent, Jack M; Ben-Jacob, Eshel

    2010-01-01

    Networks can be dynamical systems that undergo functional and structural reorganization. One example of such a process is adult hippocampal neurogenesis, in which new cells are continuously born and incorporate into the existing network of the dentate gyrus region of the hippocampus. Many of these introduced cells mature and become indistinguishable from established neurons, joining the existing network. Activity in the network environment is known to promote birth, survival and incorporation of new cells. However, after epileptogenic injury, changes to the connectivity structure around the neurogenic niche are known to correlate with aberrant neurogenesis. The possible role of network-level changes in the development of epilepsy is not well understood. In this paper, we use a computational model to investigate how the structural and functional outcomes of network reorganization, driven by addition of new cells during neurogenesis, depend on the original network structure. We find that there is a stable network topology that allows the network to incorporate new neurons in a manner that enhances activity of the persistently active region, but maintains global network properties. In networks having other connectivity structures, new cells can greatly alter the distribution of firing activity and destroy the initial activity patterns. We thus find that new cells are able to provide focused enhancement of network only for small-world networks with sufficient inhibition. Network-level deviations from this topology, such as those caused by epileptogenic injury, can set the network down a path that develops toward pathological dynamics and aberrant structural integration of new cells

  3. Lipid reorganization induced by Shiga toxin clustering on planar membranes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Windschiegl

    Full Text Available The homopentameric B-subunit of bacterial protein Shiga toxin (STxB binds to the glycolipid Gb(3 in plasma membranes, which is the initial step for entering cells by a clathrin-independent mechanism. It has been suggested that protein clustering and lipid reorganization determine toxin uptake into cells. Here, we elucidated the molecular requirements for STxB induced Gb(3 clustering and for the proposed lipid reorganization in planar membranes. The influence of binding site III of the B-subunit as well as the Gb(3 lipid structure was investigated by means of high resolution methods such as fluorescence and scanning force microscopy. STxB was found to form protein clusters on homogenous 1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DOPC/cholesterol/Gb(3 (65:30:5 bilayers. In contrast, membranes composed of DOPC/cholesterol/sphingomyelin/Gb(3 (40:35:20:5 phase separate into a liquid ordered and liquid disordered phase. Dependent on the fatty acid composition of Gb(3, STxB-Gb(3 complexes organize within the liquid ordered phase upon protein binding. Our findings suggest that STxB is capable of forming a new membrane phase that is characterized by lipid compaction. The significance of this finding is discussed in the context of Shiga toxin-induced formation of endocytic membrane invaginations.

  4. Dynamic reorganization of open chromatin underlies diverse transcriptomes during spermatogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maezawa, So; Yukawa, Masashi; Alavattam, Kris G; Barski, Artem

    2018-01-01

    Abstract During spermatogenesis, germ cells undergo massive cellular reconstruction and dynamic chromatin remodeling to facilitate highly diverse transcriptomes, which are required for the production of functional sperm. However, it remains unknown how germline chromatin is organized to promote the dynamic, complex transcriptomes of spermatogenesis. Here, using ATAC-seq, we establish the varied landscape of open chromatin during spermatogenesis. We identify the reorganization of accessible chromatin in intergenic and intronic regions during the mitosis-to-meiosis transition. During the transition, mitotic-type open chromatin is closed while the de novo formation of meiotic-type open chromatin takes place. Contrastingly, differentiation processes such as spermatogonial differentiation and the meiosis-to-postmeiosis transition involve chromatin closure without the de novo formation of accessible chromatin. In spermiogenesis, the germline-specific Polycomb protein SCML2 promotes the closure of open chromatin at autosomes for gene suppression. Paradoxically, we identify the massive de novo formation of accessible chromatin when the sex chromosomes undergo meiotic sex chromosome inactivation, and this is also mediated by SCML2. These results reveal meiotic sex chromosome inactivation as an active process for chromatin organization. Together, our results unravel the genome-wide, dynamic reorganization of open chromatin and reveal mechanisms that underlie diverse transcriptomes during spermatogenesis. PMID:29126117

  5. Rapid and dynamic subcellular reorganization following mechanical stimulation of Arabidopsis epidermal cells mimics responses to fungal and oomycete attack

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takemoto Daigo

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plant cells respond to the presence of potential fungal or oomycete pathogens by mounting a basal defence response that involves aggregation of cytoplasm, reorganization of cytoskeletal, endomembrane and other cell components and development of cell wall appositions beneath the infection site. This response is induced by non-adapted, avirulent and virulent pathogens alike, and in the majority of cases achieves penetration resistance against the microorganism on the plant surface. To explore the nature of signals that trigger this subcellular response and to determine the timing of its induction, we have monitored the reorganization of GFP-tagged actin, microtubules, endoplasmic reticulum (ER and peroxisomes in Arabidopsis plants – after touching the epidermal surface with a microneedle. Results Within 3 to 5 minutes of touching the surface of Arabidopsis cotyledon epidermal cells with fine glass or tungsten needles, actin microfilaments, ER and peroxisomes began to accumulate beneath the point of contact with the needle. Formation of a dense patch of actin was followed by focusing of actin cables on the site of contact. Touching the cell surface induced localized depolymerization of microtubules to form a microtubule-depleted zone surrounding a dense patch of GFP-tubulin beneath the needle tip. The concentration of actin, GFP-tubulin, ER and peroxisomes remained focused on the contact site as the needle moved across the cell surface and quickly dispersed when the needle was removed. Conclusion Our results show that plant cells can detect the gentle pressure of a microneedle on the epidermal cell surface and respond by reorganizing subcellular components in a manner similar to that induced during attack by potential fungal or oomycete pathogens. The results of our study indicate that during plant-pathogen interactions, the basal defence response may be induced by the plant's perception of the physical force exerted by the

  6. Modeling evolutionary dynamics of epigenetic mutations in hierarchically organized tumors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Sottoriva

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available The cancer stem cell (CSC concept is a highly debated topic in cancer research. While experimental evidence in favor of the cancer stem cell theory is apparently abundant, the results are often criticized as being difficult to interpret. An important reason for this is that most experimental data that support this model rely on transplantation studies. In this study we use a novel cellular Potts model to elucidate the dynamics of established malignancies that are driven by a small subset of CSCs. Our results demonstrate that epigenetic mutations that occur during mitosis display highly altered dynamics in CSC-driven malignancies compared to a classical, non-hierarchical model of growth. In particular, the heterogeneity observed in CSC-driven tumors is considerably higher. We speculate that this feature could be used in combination with epigenetic (methylation sequencing studies of human malignancies to prove or refute the CSC hypothesis in established tumors without the need for transplantation. Moreover our tumor growth simulations indicate that CSC-driven tumors display evolutionary features that can be considered beneficial during tumor progression. Besides an increased heterogeneity they also exhibit properties that allow the escape of clones from local fitness peaks. This leads to more aggressive phenotypes in the long run and makes the neoplasm more adaptable to stringent selective forces such as cancer treatment. Indeed when therapy is applied the clone landscape of the regrown tumor is more aggressive with respect to the primary tumor, whereas the classical model demonstrated similar patterns before and after therapy. Understanding these often counter-intuitive fundamental properties of (non-hierarchically organized malignancies is a crucial step in validating the CSC concept as well as providing insight into the therapeutical consequences of this model.

  7. A model of epigenetic evolution based on theory of open quantum systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asano, Masanari; Basieva, Irina; Khrennikov, Andrei; Ohya, Masanori; Tanaka, Yoshiharu; Yamato, Ichiro

    2013-12-01

    We present a very general model of epigenetic evolution unifying (neo-)Darwinian and (neo-)Lamarckian viewpoints. The evolution is represented in the form of adaptive dynamics given by the quantum(-like) master equation. This equation describes development of the information state of epigenome under the pressure of an environment. We use the formalism of quantum mechanics in the purely operational framework. (Hence, our model has no direct relation to quantum physical processes inside a cell.) Thus our model is about probabilities for observations which can be done on epigenomes and it does not provide a detailed description of cellular processes. Usage of the operational approach provides a possibility to describe by one model all known types of cellular epigenetic inheritance.

  8. Understanding the genetic and epigenetic architecture in complex network of rice flowering pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Changhui; Chen, Dan; Fang, Jun; Wang, Pingrong; Deng, Xiaojian; Chu, Chengcai

    2014-12-01

    Although the molecular basis of flowering time control is well dissected in the long day (LD) plant Arabidopsis, it is still largely unknown in the short day (SD) plant rice. Rice flowering time (heading date) is an important agronomic trait for season adaption and grain yield, which is affected by both genetic and environmental factors. During the last decade, as the nature of florigen was identified, notable progress has been made on exploration how florigen gene expression is genetically controlled. In Arabidopsis expression of certain key flowering integrators such as FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC) and FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) are also epigenetically regulated by various chromatin modifications, however, very little is known in rice on this aspect until very recently. This review summarized the advances of both genetic networks and chromatin modifications in rice flowering time control, attempting to give a complete view of the genetic and epigenetic architecture in complex network of rice flowering pathways.

  9. Adaptive Neuroplastic Responses in Early and Late Hemispherectomized Monkeys

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark W. Burke

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Behavioural recovery in children who undergo medically required hemispherectomy showcase the remarkable ability of the cerebral cortex to adapt and reorganize following insult early in life. Case study data suggest that lesions sustained early in childhood lead to better recovery compared to those that occur later in life. In these children, it is possible that neural reorganization had begun prior to surgery but was masked by the dysfunctional hemisphere. The degree of neural reorganization has been difficult to study systematically in human infants. Here we present a 20-year culmination of data on our nonhuman primate model (Chlorocebus sabeus of early-life hemispherectomy in which behavioral recovery is interpreted in light of plastic processes that lead to the anatomical reorganization of the early-damaged brain. The model presented here suggests that significant functional recovery occurs after the removal of one hemisphere in monkeys with no preexisting neurological dysfunctions. Human and primate studies suggest a critical role for subcortical and brainstem structures as well as corticospinal tracts in the neuroanatomical reorganization which result in the remarkable behavioral recovery following hemispherectomy. The non-human primate model presented here offers a unique opportunity for studying the behavioral and functional neuroanatomical reorganization that underlies developmental plasticity.

  10. New insights into the epigenetics of inflammatory rheumatic diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballestar, Esteban; Li, Tianlu

    2017-10-01

    Over the past decade, awareness of the importance of epigenetic alterations in the pathogenesis of rheumatic diseases has grown in parallel with a general recognition of the fundamental role of epigenetics in the regulation of gene expression. Large-scale efforts to generate genome-wide maps of epigenetic modifications in different cell types, as well as in physiological and pathological contexts, illustrate the increasing recognition of the relevance of epigenetics. To date, although several reports have demonstrated the occurrence of epigenetic alterations in a wide range of inflammatory rheumatic conditions, epigenomic information is rarely used in a clinical setting. By contrast, several epigenetic biomarkers and treatments are currently in use for personalized therapies in patients with cancer. This Review highlights advances from the past 5 years in the field of epigenetics and their application to inflammatory rheumatic diseases, delineating the future lines of development for a rational use of epigenetic information in clinical settings and in personalized medicine. These advances include the identification of epipolymorphisms associated with clinical outcomes, DNA methylation as a contributor to disease susceptibility in rheumatic conditions, the discovery of novel epigenetic mechanisms that modulate disease susceptibility and the development of new epigenetic therapies.

  11. Epigenetic Mechanisms and Therapeutic Perspectives for Neurodevelopmental Disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kunio Miyake

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available The number of children with mild neurodevelopmental disorders, such as autism, has been recently increasing in advanced countries. This increase is probably caused by environmental factors rather than genetic factors, because it is unlikely that genetic mutation rates suddenly increased within a short period. Epigenetics is a mechanism that regulates gene expression, depending not on the underlying DNA sequence but on the chemical modifications of DNA and histone proteins. Because mental stress can alter the epigenetic status in neuronal cells, environmental factors may alter brain function through epigenetic changes. However, one advantage of epigenetic changes is their reversibility. Therefore, diseases due to abnormal epigenetic regulation are theoretically treatable. In fact, several drugs for treating mental diseases are known to have restoring effects on aberrant epigenetic statuses, and a novel therapeutic strategy targeting gene has been developed. In this review, we discuss epigenetic mechanisms of congenital and acquired neurodevelopmental disorders, drugs with epigenetic effects, novel therapeutic strategies for epigenetic diseases, and future perspectives in epigenetic medicine.

  12. The Roots of Military Reform: The Development of the Goldwater-Nichols Defense Reorganization Act of 1986 as It Applied to JCS Reorganization

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Leenhouts, Peter M

    1997-01-01

    The purpose of this short paper is to briefly examine the roots of the Goldwater-Nichols Defense Reorganization Act of I 986, in order to investigate the political forces at work behind the decision...

  13. Epigenetics: A way to bridge the gap between biological fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicoglou, Antonine; Merlin, Francesca

    2017-12-01

    The concept of epigenetics has evolved since Waddington defined it from the late 1930s as the study of the causal mechanisms at work in development. It has become a multi-faceted notion with different meanings, depending on the disciplinary context it is used. In this article, we first analyse the transformations of the concept of epigenetics, from Waddington to contemporary accounts, in order to identify its different meanings and traditions, and to come up with a typology of epigenetics throughout its history. Second, we show on this basis that epigenetics has progressively turned its main focus from biological problems regarding development, toward issues concerning evolution. Yet, both these different epistemological aspects of epigenetics still coexist. Third, we claim that the classical opposition between epigenesis and preformationism as ways of thinking about the developmental process is part of the history of epigenetics and has contributed to its current various meanings. With these objectives in mind, we first show how Waddington introduced the term "epigenetics" in a biological context in order to solve a developmental problem, and we then build on this by presenting Nanney's, Riggs' and Holliday's definitions, which form the basis for the current conception of "molecular epigenetics". Then, we show that the evo-devo research field is where some particular uses of epigenetics have started shifting from developmental issues to evolutionary problems. We also show that epigenetics has progressively focused on the issue of epigenetic inheritance within the Extended Evolutionary Synthesis' framework. Finally, we conclude by presenting a typology of the different conceptions of epigenetics throughout time, and analyse the connections between them. We argue that, since Waddington, epigenetics, as an integrative research area, has been used to bridge the gap between different biological fields. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Using reinforcement learning to provide stable brain-machine interface control despite neural input reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohlmeyer, Eric A; Mahmoudi, Babak; Geng, Shijia; Prins, Noeline W; Sanchez, Justin C

    2014-01-01

    Brain-machine interface (BMI) systems give users direct neural control of robotic, communication, or functional electrical stimulation systems. As BMI systems begin transitioning from laboratory settings into activities of daily living, an important goal is to develop neural decoding algorithms that can be calibrated with a minimal burden on the user, provide stable control for long periods of time, and can be responsive to fluctuations in the decoder's neural input space (e.g. neurons appearing or being lost amongst electrode recordings). These are significant challenges for static neural decoding algorithms that assume stationary input/output relationships. Here we use an actor-critic reinforcement learning architecture to provide an adaptive BMI controller that can successfully adapt to dramatic neural reorganizations, can maintain its performance over long time periods, and which does not require the user to produce specific kinetic or kinematic activities to calibrate the BMI. Two marmoset monkeys used the Reinforcement Learning BMI (RLBMI) to successfully control a robotic arm during a two-target reaching task. The RLBMI was initialized using random initial conditions, and it quickly learned to control the robot from brain states using only a binary evaluative feedback regarding whether previously chosen robot actions were good or bad. The RLBMI was able to maintain control over the system throughout sessions spanning multiple weeks. Furthermore, the RLBMI was able to quickly adapt and maintain control of the robot despite dramatic perturbations to the neural inputs, including a series of tests in which the neuron input space was deliberately halved or doubled.

  15. Using reinforcement learning to provide stable brain-machine interface control despite neural input reorganization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric A Pohlmeyer

    Full Text Available Brain-machine interface (BMI systems give users direct neural control of robotic, communication, or functional electrical stimulation systems. As BMI systems begin transitioning from laboratory settings into activities of daily living, an important goal is to develop neural decoding algorithms that can be calibrated with a minimal burden on the user, provide stable control for long periods of time, and can be responsive to fluctuations in the decoder's neural input space (e.g. neurons appearing or being lost amongst electrode recordings. These are significant challenges for static neural decoding algorithms that assume stationary input/output relationships. Here we use an actor-critic reinforcement learning architecture to provide an adaptive BMI controller that can successfully adapt to dramatic neural reorganizations, can maintain its performance over long time periods, and which does not require the user to produce specific kinetic or kinematic activities to calibrate the BMI. Two marmoset monkeys used the Reinforcement Learning BMI (RLBMI to successfully control a robotic arm during a two-target reaching task. The RLBMI was initialized using random initial conditions, and it quickly learned to control the robot from brain states using only a binary evaluative feedback regarding whether previously chosen robot actions were good or bad. The RLBMI was able to maintain control over the system throughout sessions spanning multiple weeks. Furthermore, the RLBMI was able to quickly adapt and maintain control of the robot despite dramatic perturbations to the neural inputs, including a series of tests in which the neuron input space was deliberately halved or doubled.

  16. The Stability of the Induced Epigenetic Programs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria J. Barrero

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available For many years scientists have been attracted to the possibility of changing cell identity. In the last decades seminal discoveries have shown that it is possible to reprogram somatic cells into pluripotent cells and even to transdifferentiate one cell type into another. In view of the potential applications that generating specific cell types in the laboratory can offer for cell-based therapies, the next important questions relate to the quality of the induced cell types. Importantly, epigenetic aberrations in reprogrammed cells have been correlated with defects in differentiation. Therefore, a look at the epigenome and understanding how different regulators can shape it appear fundamental to anticipate potential therapeutic pitfalls. This paper covers these epigenetic aspects in stem cells, differentiation, and reprogramming and discusses their importance for the safety of in vitro engineered cell types.

  17. Epigenetics of reprogramming to induced pluripotency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papp, Bernadett; Plath, Kathrin

    2013-01-01

    Reprogramming to induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) proceeds in a step-wise manner with reprogramming factor binding, transcription, and chromatin states changing during transitions. Evidence is emerging that epigenetic priming events early in the process may be critical for pluripotency induction later. Chromatin and its regulators are important controllers of reprogramming, and reprogramming factor levels, stoichiometry, and extracellular conditions influence the outcome. The rapid progress in characterizing reprogramming is benefiting applications of iPSCs and already enabling the rational design of novel reprogramming factor-cocktails. However, recent studies have uncovered an epigenetic instability of the X-chromosome in human iPSCs that warrants careful consideration. PMID:23498940

  18. Epigenetics as biomarkers in autoimmune diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Haijing; Liao, Jieyue; Li, Qianwen; Yang, Ming; Zhao, Ming; Lu, Qianjin

    2018-03-21

    Autoimmune diseases are immune system disorders in which immune cells cannot distinguish self-antigens from foreign ones. The current criteria for autoimmune disease diagnosis are based on clinical manifestations and laboratory tests. However, none of these markers shows both high sensitivity and specificity. In addition, some autoimmune diseases, for example, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), are highly heterogeneous and often exhibit various manifestations. On the other hand, certain autoimmune diseases, such as Sjogren's syndrome versus SLE, share similar symptoms and autoantibodies, which also causes difficulties in diagnosis. Therefore, biomarkers that have both high sensitivity and high specificity for diagnosis, reflect disease activity and predict drug response are necessary. An increasing number of publications have proposed the abnormal epigenetic modifications as biomarkers of autoimmune diseases. Therefore, this review will comprehensively summarize the epigenetic progress in the pathogenesis of autoimmune disorders and unearth potential biomarkers that might be appropriate for disease diagnosis and prediction. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  19. Epigenetic processes in flowering plant reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Guifeng; Köhler, Claudia

    2017-02-01

    Seeds provide up to 70% of the energy intake of the human population, emphasizing the relevance of understanding the genetic and epigenetic mechanisms controlling seed formation. In flowering plants, seeds are the product of a double fertilization event, leading to the formation of the embryo and the endosperm surrounded by maternal tissues. Analogous to mammals, plants undergo extensive epigenetic reprogramming during both gamete formation and early seed development, a process that is supposed to be required to enforce silencing of transposable elements and thus to maintain genome stability. Global changes of DNA methylation, histone modifications, and small RNAs are closely associated with epigenome programming during plant reproduction. Here, we review current knowledge on chromatin changes occurring during sporogenesis and gametogenesis, as well as early seed development in major flowering plant models. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Epigenetic Modifications of Major Depressive Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathleen Saavedra

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Major depressive disorder (MDD is a chronic disease whose neurological basis and pathophysiology remain poorly understood. Initially, it was proposed that genetic variations were responsible for the development of this disease. Nevertheless, several studies within the last decade have provided evidence suggesting that environmental factors play an important role in MDD pathophysiology. Alterations in epigenetics mechanism, such as DNA methylation, histone modification and microRNA expression could favor MDD advance in response to stressful experiences and environmental factors. The aim of this review is to describe genetic alterations, and particularly altered epigenetic mechanisms, that could be determinants for MDD progress, and how these alterations may arise as useful screening, diagnosis and treatment monitoring biomarkers of depressive disorders.

  1. [Application of Epigenetics in Perinatal Nursing Care].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chou, Hsueh-Fen; Kao, Chien-Huei; Gau, Meei-Ling

    2017-04-01

    Epigenetics is a field of biomedicine that expanded tremendously during the 1980s. Epigenetics is the study of heritable changes in gene expression independent of underlying DNA (DeoxyriboNucleic Acid) sequence, which not only affect this generation but will be passed to subsequent generations. Although conception is the critical moment for making decisions regarding gene mapping and fetal health, studies have shown that perinatal nursing care practices also affect the genetic remodeling processes and the subsequent health of the mother and her offspring. To optimize maternal-infant and the offspring health, it is important to ensure that the new mother get adequate nutrition, reduce stress levels, adopt gentle birth practices, facilitate exclusive breastfeeding, and avoid contacting toxic substances.

  2. Epigenetics: The Future Direction in Systemic Sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walczyk, M; Paradowska-Gorycka, A; Olesinska, M

    2017-12-01

    Systemic sclerosis (SSc) is an immune-mediated connective tissue disease of which the aetiology is still unclear. Previous genetic studies including candidate-gene studies and genomewide association studies have identified a number of genetic variations that confer risk to SSc. However, these variants, such as single nucleotide polymorphisms, cannot completely explain the SSc susceptibility and the diversity in the clinical symptoms of SSc patients. The contribution of epigenetic mechanisms as a link between genetics and environmental triggers represents promising field in understanding the pathogenesis of SSc. The aim of this review was to present the current knowledge on epigenetic mechanisms and highlight novel directions in diagnostic and therapeutical approaches. © 2017 The Foundation for the Scandinavian Journal of Immunology.

  3. Small RNA-Mediated Epigenetic Myostatin Silencing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas C Roberts

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Myostatin (Mstn is a secreted growth factor that negatively regulates muscle mass and is therefore a potential pharmacological target for the treatment of muscle wasting disorders such as Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Here we describe a novel Mstn blockade approach in which small interfering RNAs (siRNAs complementary to a promoter-associated transcript induce transcriptional gene silencing (TGS in two differentiated mouse muscle cell lines. Silencing is sensitive to treatment with the histone deacetylase inhibitor trichostatin A, and the silent state chromatin mark H3K9me2 is enriched at the Mstn promoter following siRNA transfection, suggesting epigenetic remodeling underlies the silencing effect. These observations suggest that long-term epigenetic silencing may be feasible for Mstn and that TGS is a promising novel therapeutic strategy for the treatment of muscle wasting disorders.

  4. Epigenetics of hypoxic pulmonary arterial hypertension following intrauterine growth retardation rat: epigenetics in PAH following IUGR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xu Xue-Feng

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Accumulating evidence reveals that intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR can cause varying degrees of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH later in life. Moreover, epigenetics plays an important role in the fetal origin of adult disease. The goal of this study was to investigate the role of epigenetics in the development of PAH following IUGR. Methods The IUGR rats were established by maternal undernutrition during pregnancy. Pulmonary vascular endothelial cells (PVEC were isolated from the rat lungs by magnetic-activated cell sorting (MACS. We investigated epigenetic regulation of the endothelin-1 (ET-1 gene in PVEC of 1-day and 6-week IUGR rats, and response of IUGR rats to hypoxia. Results The maternal nutrient restriction increased the histone acetylation and hypoxia inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α binding levels in the ET-1 gene promoter of PVEC in IUGR newborn rats, and continued up to 6 weeks after birth. These epigenetic changes could result in an IUGR rat being highly sensitive to hypoxia later in life, causing more significant PAH or pulmonary vascular remodeling. Conclusions These findings suggest that epigenetics is closely associated with the development of hypoxic PAH following IUGR, further providing a new insight for improved prevention and treatment of IUGR-related PAH.

  5. Bisphenol A in Reproduction: Epigenetic Effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chianese, Rosanna; Troisi, Jacopo; Richards, Sean; Scafuro, Marika; Fasano, Silvia; Guida, Maurizio; Pierantoni, Riccardo; Meccariello, Rosaria

    2018-02-21

    Bisphenol A (BPA) is an endocrine disrupting chemical widely used in the manufacture of polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resin to produce a multitude of consumer products, food and drink containers, and medical devices. BPA is similar to estradiol in structure and thus interferes in steroid signalling with different outcomes on reproductive health depending on doses, life stage, mode, and timing of exposure. In this respect, it has an emerging and controversial role as a "reproductive toxicant" capable of inducing short and long-term effects including the modulation of gene expression through epigenetic modification (i.e. methylation of CpG islands, histone modifications and production of non-coding RNA) with direct and trans-generational effects on exposed organisms and their offspring, respectively. This review provides an overview about BPA effects on reproductive health and aims to summarize the epigenetic effects of BPA in male and female reproduction. BPA exerts epigenetic effects in both male and female reproduction. In males, BPA affects spermatogenesis and sperm quality and possible trans-generational effects on the reproductive ability of the offspring. In females, BPA affects ovary, embryo development, and gamete quality for successful in vivo and in vitro fertilization (IVF). The exact mechanisms of BPA-mediated effects in reproduction are not fully understood; however, the environmental exposure to BPA - especially in fetal and neonatal period - deserves attention to preserve the reproductive ability in both sexes and to reduce the epigenetic risk for the offspring. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  6. Microbiome, inflammation, epigenetic alterations, and mental diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alam, Reza; Abdolmaleky, Hamid M; Zhou, Jin-Rong

    2017-09-01

    Major mental diseases such as autism, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and major depressive disorder are debilitating illnesses with complex etiologies. Recent findings show that the onset and development of these illnesses cannot be well described by the one-gene; one-disease approach. Instead, their clinical presentation is thought to result from the regulative interplay of a large number of genes. Even though the involvement of many genes are likely, up regulating and activation or down regulation and silencing of these genes by the environmental factors play a crucial role in contributing to their pathogenesis. Much of this interplay may be moderated by epigenetic changes. Similar to genetic mutations, epigenetic modifications such as DNA methylation, histone modifications, and RNA interference can influence gene expression and therefore may cause behavioral and neuronal changes observed in mental disorders. Environmental factors such as diet, gut microbiota, and infections have significant role in these epigenetic modifications. Studies show that bioactive nutrients and gut microbiota can alter either DNA methylation and histone signatures through a variety of mechanisms. Indeed, microbes within the human gut may play a significant role in the regulation of various elements of "gut-brain axis," via their influence on inflammatory cytokines and production of antimicrobial peptides that affect the epigenome through their involvement in generating short chain fatty acids, vitamin synthesis, and nutrient absorption. In addition, they may participate in-gut production of many common neurotransmitters. In this review we will consider the potential interactions of diet, gastrointestinal microbiome, inflammation, and epigenetic alterations in psychiatric disorders. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Noncoding Elements: Evolution and Epigenetic Regulation

    KAUST Repository

    Seridi, Loqmane

    2016-03-09

    When the human genome project was completed, it revealed a surprising result. 98% of the genome did not code for protein of which more than 50% are repeats— later known as ”Junk DNA”. However, comparative genomics unveiled that many noncoding elements are evolutionarily constrained; thus luckily to have a role in genome stability and regulation. Though, their exact functions remained largely unknown. Several large international consortia such as the Functional Annotation of Mammalian Genomes (FANTOM) and the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) were set to understand the structure and the regulation of the genome. Specifically, these endeavors aim to measure and reveal the transcribed components and functional elements of the genome. One of the most the striking findings of these efforts is that most of the genome is transcribed, including non-conserved noncoding elements and repeat elements. Specifically, we investigated the evolution and epigenetic properties of noncoding elements. 1. We compared genomes of evolutionarily distant species and showed the ubiquity of constrained noncoding elements in metazoa. 2. By integrating multi-omic data (such as transcriptome, nucleosome profiling, histone modifications), I conducted a comprehensive analysis of epigenetic properties (chromatin states) of conserved noncoding elements in insects. We showed that those elements have distinct and protective sequence features, undergo dynamic epigenetic regulation, and appear to be associated with the structural components of the chromatin, replication origins, and nuclear matrix. 3. I focused on the relationship between enhancers and repetitive elements. Using Cap Analysis of Gene Expression (CAGE) and RNASeq, I compiled a full catalog of active enhancers (a class of noncoding elements) during myogenesis of human primary cells of healthy donors and donors affected by Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Comparing the two time-courses, a significant change in the epigenetic

  8. Early apoptotic reorganization of spliceosomal proteins involves caspases, CAD and rearrangement of NuMA.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dieker, J.; Iglesias-Guimarais, V.; Decossas, M.; Stevenin, J.; Vlag, J. van der; Yuste, V.J.; Muller, S.

    2012-01-01

    The reorganization of nuclear structures is an important early feature of apoptosis and involves the activity of specific proteases and nucleases. Well-known is the condensation and fragmentation of chromatin; however, much less is understood about the mechanisms involved in the reorganization of

  9. 75 FR 68605 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 177 Under Alternative Site Framework; Mount Vernon...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-08

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1721] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 177 Under Alternative Site Framework; Mount Vernon/Evansville, Indiana Pursuant to its authority... the establishment or reorganization of general-purpose zones; Whereas, the Ports of Indiana, grantee...

  10. 78 FR 59650 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 40 Under Alternative Site Framework Cleveland, Ohio

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-27

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1916] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 40 Under Alternative Site Framework Cleveland, Ohio Pursuant to its authority under the Foreign... CFR 400.2(c)) as an option for the establishment or reorganization of zones; Whereas, the Cleveland...

  11. 76 FR 50172 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 216 Under Alternative Site Framework, Olympia, WA

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    2011-08-12

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1777] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 216 Under Alternative Site Framework, Olympia, WA Pursuant to its authority under the Foreign... for the establishment or reorganization of general-purpose zones; Whereas, the Port of Olympia...

  12. 29 CFR Appendix A to Part 24 - Your Rights Under the Energy Reorganization Act

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 29 Labor 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 true Your Rights Under the Energy Reorganization Act A Appendix A to Part 24 Labor Office of the Secretary of Labor PROCEDURES FOR THE HANDLING OF RETALIATION... the Energy Reorganization Act ER10AU07.000 ...

  13. 76 FR 80886 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 277 Under Alternative Site Framework; Western Maricopa...

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    2011-12-27

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1804] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 277 Under Alternative Site Framework; Western Maricopa County, AZ Pursuant to its authority under... for the establishment or reorganization of general-purpose zones; Whereas, Greater Maricopa Foreign...

  14. 75 FR 69048 - Foreign-Trade Zone 64-Jacksonville, Florida Application for Reorganization/Expansion Under...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-10

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Docket 63-2010] Foreign-Trade Zone 64--Jacksonville, Florida Application for Reorganization/Expansion Under Alternative Site Framework An application... ASF is an option for grantees for the establishment or reorganization of general-purpose zones and can...

  15. 77 FR 41373 - Reorganization and Expansion of Foreign-Trade Zone 99 Under Alternative Site Framework...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-07-13

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1839] Reorganization and Expansion of Foreign-Trade Zone 99 Under Alternative Site Framework; Wilmington, DE Pursuant to its authority under the.../2010) as an option for the establishment or reorganization of general-purpose zones; Whereas, the State...

  16. 76 FR 63283 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 59 Under Alternative Site Framework; Lincoln, NE

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-10-12

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1783] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 59 Under Alternative Site Framework; Lincoln, NE Pursuant to its authority under the Foreign-Trade...) as an option for the establishment or reorganization of general-purpose zones; Whereas, the Lincoln...

  17. 77 FR 65361 - Reorganization/Expansion of Foreign-z Under Alternative Site Framework; Galveston, TX

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-10-26

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1863] Reorganization/Expansion of Foreign-z Under Alternative Site Framework; Galveston, TX Pursuant to its authority under the Foreign... CFR 400.2(c)) as an option for the establishment or reorganization of zones; Whereas, the Board of...

  18. 75 FR 13261 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 260 under Alternative Site Framework, Lubbock, Texas

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    2010-03-19

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1668] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 260 under Alternative Site Framework, Lubbock, Texas Pursuant to its authority under the Foreign... reorganization of general-purpose zones; Whereas, the City of Lubbock, Texas, grantee of Foreign-Trade Zone 260...

  19. 75 FR 55309 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 170 Under Alternative Site Framework; Jeffersonville, IN

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-10

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1704] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 170 Under Alternative Site Framework; Jeffersonville, IN Pursuant to its authority under the... establishment or reorganization of general-purpose zones; Whereas, the Ports of Indiana, grantee of Foreign...

  20. 13 CFR 107.470 - SBA approval of merger, consolidation, or reorganization of Licensee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 13 Business Credit and Assistance 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false SBA approval of merger, consolidation, or reorganization of Licensee. 107.470 Section 107.470 Business Credit and Assistance SMALL..., consolidation, or reorganization of Licensee. (a) Prior approval requirements. You may not merge, consolidate...

  1. 77 FR 59891 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 129 Under Alternative Site Framework Bellingham, WA

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-10-01

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1856] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 129 Under Alternative Site Framework Bellingham, WA Pursuant to its authority under the Foreign... CFR Sec. 400.2(c)) as an option for the establishment or reorganization of zones; Whereas, the Port of...

  2. 75 FR 76953 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 26 Under Alternative Site Framework, Atlanta, GA

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    2010-12-10

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1725] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 26 Under Alternative Site Framework, Atlanta, GA Pursuant to its authority under the Foreign-Trade... reorganization of general-purpose zones; Whereas, the Georgia Foreign-Trade Zone, Inc., grantee of Foreign- Trade...

  3. 78 FR 30863 - Foreign-Trade Zone 40-Cleveland, Ohio; Application for Reorganization and Expansion Under...

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    2013-05-23

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-49-2013] Foreign-Trade Zone 40--Cleveland, Ohio; Application for Reorganization and Expansion Under Alternative Site Framework An application has... establishment or reorganization of zones and can permit significantly greater flexibility in the designation of...

  4. 78 FR 10129 - Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 70 Under Alternative Site Framework, Detroit, MI

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    2013-02-13

    ... DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [Order No. 1878] Reorganization of Foreign-Trade Zone 70 Under Alternative Site Framework, Detroit, MI Pursuant to its authority under the Foreign-Trade...(c)) as an option for the establishment or reorganization of zones; Whereas, the Greater Detroit...

  5. Epigenetic Changes in Diabetes and Cardiovascular Risk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keating, Samuel T; Plutzky, Jorge; El-Osta, Assam

    2016-01-01

    Cardiovascular complications remain the leading causes of morbidity and premature mortality in patients with diabetes. Studies in humans and preclinical models demonstrate lasting gene expression changes in the vasculopathies initiated by previous exposure to high glucose concentrations and the associated overproduction of reactive oxygen species. The molecular signatures of chromatin architectures that sensitize the genome to these and other cardiometabolic risk factors of the diabetic milieu are increasingly implicated in the biologic memory underlying cardiovascular complications and now widely considered as promising therapeutic targets. Atherosclerosis is a complex heterocellular disease where the contributing cell types possess distinct epigenomes shaping diverse gene expression. While the extent that pathological chromatin changes can be manipulated in human cardiovascular disease remains to be established, the clinical applicability of epigenetic interventions will be greatly advanced by a deeper understanding of the cell type-specific roles played by writers, erasers, and readers of chromatin modifications in the diabetic vasculature. This review details a current perspective of epigenetic mechanisms of macrovascular disease in diabetes, and highlights recent key descriptions of chromatinized changes associated with persistent gene expression in endothelial, smooth muscle, and circulating immune cells relevant to atherosclerosis. Furthermore we discuss the challenges associated with pharmacological targeting of epigenetic networks to correct abnormal or deregulated gene expression as a strategy to alleviate the clinical burden of diabetic cardiovascular disease. PMID:27230637

  6. Epigenetic regulation in Autism spectrum disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sraboni Chaudhury

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Autism spectrum disorder (ASD is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by an impaired social communication skill and often results in repetitive, stereotyped behavior which is observed in children during the first few years of life. Other characteristic of this disorder includes language disabilities, difficulties in sensory integration, lack of reciprocal interactions and in some cases, cognitive delays. One percentage of the general population is affected by ASD and is four times more common in boys than girls. There are hundreds of genes, which has been identified to be associated with ASD etiology. However it remains difficult to comprehend our understanding in defining the genetic architecture necessary for complete exposition of its pathophysiology. Seeing the complexity of the disease, it is important to adopt a multidisciplinary approach which should not only focus on the “genetics” of autism but also on epigenetics, transcriptomics, immune system disruption and environmental factors that could all impact the pathogenesis of the disease. As environmental factors also play a key role in regulating the trigger of ASD, the role of chromatin remodeling and DNA methylation has started to emerge. Such epigenetic modifications directly link molecular regulatory pathways and environmental factors, which might be able to explain some aspects of complex disorders like ASD. The present review will focus on the role of epigenetic regulation in defining the underlying cause for ASD

  7. Parental tobacco smoke exposure: Epigenetics and the ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epigenetic programming is an important mechanism underlying the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD). Much of the research in this area has focused on maternal nutrition. Parental smoking has emerged as a prime example of how exposure to environmental toxicants during the preconceptional and in utero periods can have long-term effects on offspring health, and the role of the epigenome in these effects. Maternal smoking and exposure to second-hand smoke during pregnancy result in lower birth weight of offspring, and there is now clear evidence that these offspring are at elevated risk for overweight/obesity, type-2 diabetes, respiratory effects during adolescence and adulthood, and may be programmed for increased risk of nicotine addiction. Epigenetic analyses of placenta, cord blood and offspring buccal cells have consistently revealed altered DNA methylation of genes involved in developmental processes and xenobiotic metabolism, and these epigenetic changes are persistent. Animal studies with cigarette smoke and nicotine support these findings. Paternal preconceptional smoking has been positively related to childhood cancers, potentially linked to changes in the sperm epigenome. Germ cell specification and preimplantation development are periods of widespread erasure and reprogramming of DNA methylation, and as such are likely to be sensitive periods for environmental effects on the epigenome. Exposure to tobacco smoke during gametogenesis and in

  8. Genetics and epigenetics of rheumatoid arthritis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viatte, Sebastien; Plant, Darren; Raychaudhuri, Soumya

    2013-01-01

    Investigators have made key advances in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) genetics in the past 10 years. Although genetic studies have had limited influence on clinical practice and drug discovery, they are currently generating testable hypotheses to explain disease pathogenesis. Firstly, we review here the major advances in identifying RA genetic susceptibility markers both within and outside of the MHC. Understanding how genetic variants translate into pathogenic mechanisms and ultimately into phenotypes remains a mystery for most of the polymorphisms that confer susceptibility to RA, but functional data are emerging. Interplay between environmental and genetic factors is poorly understood and in need of further investigation. Secondly, we review current knowledge of the role of epigenetics in RA susceptibility. Differences in the epigenome could represent one of the ways in which environmental exposures translate into phenotypic outcomes. The best understood epigenetic phenomena include post-translational histone modifications and DNA methylation events, both of which have critical roles in gene regulation. Epigenetic studies in RA represent a new area of research with the potential to answer unsolved questions. PMID:23381558

  9. Epigenetic mechanisms in nanomaterial-induced toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shyamasundar, Sukanya; Ng, Cheng Teng; Yung, Lin Yue Lanry; Dheen, Shaikali Thameem; Bay, Boon Huat

    2015-01-01

    With the growing advent of nanotechnology in medicine (therapeutic, diagnostic and imaging applications), cosmetics, electronics, clothing and food industries, exposure to nanomaterials (NMs) is on the rise and therefore exploring their toxic biological effects have gained great significance. In vitro and in vivo studies over the last decade have revealed that NMs have the potential to cause cytotoxicity and genotoxicity although some contradictory reports exist. However, there are only few studies which have explored the epigenetic mechanisms (changes to DNA methylation, histone modification and miRNA expression) of NM-induced toxicity, and there is a scarcity of information and many questions in this area remain unexplored and unaddressed. This review comprehensively describes the epigenetic mechanisms involved in the induction of toxicity of engineered NMs, and provides comparisons between similar effects observed upon exposure to small or nanometer-sized particles. Lastly, gaps in existing literature and scope for future studies that improve our understanding of NM-induced epigenetic toxicity are discussed.

  10. Titration and hysteresis in epigenetic chromatin silencing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dayarian, Adel; Sengupta, Anirvan M.

    2013-06-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms of silencing via heritable chromatin modifications play a major role in gene regulation and cell fate specification. We consider a model of epigenetic chromatin silencing in budding yeast and study the bifurcation diagram and characterize the bistable and the monostable regimes. The main focus of this paper is to examine how the perturbations altering the activity of histone modifying enzymes affect the epigenetic states. We analyze the implications of having the total number of silencing proteins, given by the sum of proteins bound to the nucleosomes and the ones available in the ambient, to be constant. This constraint couples different regions of chromatin through the shared reservoir of ambient silencing proteins. We show that the response of the system to perturbations depends dramatically on the titration effect caused by the above constraint. In particular, for a certain range of overall abundance of silencing proteins, the hysteresis loop changes qualitatively with certain jump replaced by continuous merger of different states. In addition, we find a nonmonotonic dependence of gene expression on the rate of histone deacetylation activity of Sir2. We discuss how these qualitative predictions of our model could be compared with experimental studies of the yeast system under anti-silencing drugs.

  11. Titration and hysteresis in epigenetic chromatin silencing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dayarian, Adel; Sengupta, Anirvan M

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms of silencing via heritable chromatin modifications play a major role in gene regulation and cell fate specification. We consider a model of epigenetic chromatin silencing in budding yeast and study the bifurcation diagram and characterize the bistable and the monostable regimes. The main focus of this paper is to examine how the perturbations altering the activity of histone modifying enzymes affect the epigenetic states. We analyze the implications of having the total number of silencing proteins, given by the sum of proteins bound to the nucleosomes and the ones available in the ambient, to be constant. This constraint couples different regions of chromatin through the shared reservoir of ambient silencing proteins. We show that the response of the system to perturbations depends dramatically on the titration effect caused by the above constraint. In particular, for a certain range of overall abundance of silencing proteins, the hysteresis loop changes qualitatively with certain jump replaced by continuous merger of different states. In addition, we find a nonmonotonic dependence of gene expression on the rate of histone deacetylation activity of Sir2. We discuss how these qualitative predictions of our model could be compared with experimental studies of the yeast system under anti-silencing drugs. (paper)

  12. Epigenetic analysis of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunwell, Thomas L; Hesson, Luke B; Pavlova, Tatiana; Zabarovska, Veronika; Kashuba, Vladimir; Catchpoole, Daniel; Chiaramonte, Raffaella; Brini, Anna T; Griffiths, Mike; Maher, Eamonn R; Zabarovsky, Eugene; Latif, Farida

    2009-04-01

    We used a chromosome 3 wide NotI microarray for identification of epigenetically inactivated genes in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). Three novel genes demonstrated frequent methylation in childhood ALL. PPP2R3A (protein phosphatase 2, regulatory subunit B", alpha) was frequently methylated in T (69%) and B (82%)-ALL. Whilst FBLN2 (fibulin 2) and THRB (thyroid hormone receptor, beta) showed frequent methylation in B-ALL (58%; 56% respectively), but were less frequently methylated in T-ALL (17% for both genes). Recently it was demonstrated that BNC1 (Basonuclin 1) and MSX1 (msh homeobox 1) were frequently methylated across common epithelial cancers. In our series of childhood ALL BNC1 was frequently methylated in both T (77%) and B-ALL (79%), whilst MSX1 showed T-ALL (25%) specific methylation. The methylation of the above five genes was cancer specific and expression of the genes could be restored in methylated leukemia cell lines treated with 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine. This is the first report demonstrating frequent epigenetic inactivation of PPP2R3A, FBLN2, THRB, BNC1 and MSX1 in leukemia. The identification of frequently methylated genes showing cancer specific methylation will be useful in developing early cancer detection screens and for targeted epigenetic therapies.

  13. The C. elegans CSR-1 argonaute pathway counteracts epigenetic silencing to promote germline gene expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seth, Meetu; Shirayama, Masaki; Gu, Weifeng; Ishidate, Takao; Conte, Darryl; Mello, Craig C

    2013-12-23

    Organisms can develop adaptive sequence-specific immunity by reexpressing pathogen-specific small RNAs that guide gene silencing. For example, the C. elegans PIWI-Argonaute/piwi-interacting RNA (piRNA) pathway recruits RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRP) to foreign sequences to amplify a transgenerational small-RNA-induced epigenetic silencing signal (termed RNAe). Here, we provide evidence that, in addition to an adaptive memory of silenced sequences, C. elegans can also develop an opposing adaptive memory of expressed/self-mRNAs. We refer to this mechanism, which can prevent or reverse RNAe, as RNA-induced epigenetic gene activation (RNAa). We show that CSR-1, which engages RdRP-amplified small RNAs complementary to germline-expressed mRNAs, is required for RNAa. We show that a transgene with RNAa activity also exhibits accumulation of cognate CSR-1 small RNAs. Our findings suggest that C. elegans adaptively acquires and maintains a transgenerational CSR-1 memory that recognizes and protects self-mRNAs, allowing piRNAs to recognize foreign sequences innately, without the need for prior exposure

  14. Epigenetic Reprogramming of Muscle Progenitors: Inspiration for Clinical Therapies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Consalvi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In the context of regenerative medicine, based on the potential of stem cells to restore diseased tissues, epigenetics is becoming a pivotal area of interest. Therapeutic interventions that promote tissue and organ regeneration have as primary objective the selective control of gene expression in adult stem cells. This requires a deep understanding of the epigenetic mechanisms controlling transcriptional programs in tissue progenitors. This review attempts to elucidate the principle epigenetic regulations responsible of stem cells differentiation. In particular we focus on the current understanding of the epigenetic networks that regulate differentiation of muscle progenitors by the concerted action of chromatin-modifying enzymes and noncoding RNAs. The novel exciting role of exosome-bound microRNA in mediating epigenetic information transfer is also discussed. Finally we show an overview of the epigenetic strategies and therapies that aim to potentiate muscle regeneration and counteract the progression of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD.

  15. Epigenetic mechanisms in the pathogenesis of diabetic retinopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Jun; Chen, Baihua

    2014-01-01

    Diabetic retinopathy (DR), which arises as a result of an increasing incidence of diabetes mellitus, has gradually become a common disease. Due to its complex pathogenesis, the treatment means of DR are very limited. The findings of several studies have shown that instituting tight glycemic control in diabetic patients does not immediately benefit the progression of retinopathy, and the benefits of good control persist beyond the period of good glycemic control. This has led to the concept of persistent epigenetic changes. Epigenetics has now become an increasingly important area of biomedical research. Recently, important roles of various epigenetic mechanisms have been identified in the pathogenesis of diabetes and its complications. The aim of this review is to provide an overview of the epigenetics and epigenetic mechanisms in diabetes and diabetes complications, and the focus is on the emerging evidence for aberrant epigenetic mechanisms in DR. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  16. Epigenetic diet: impact on the epigenome and cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardy, Tabitha M; Tollefsbol, Trygve O

    2011-08-01

    A number of bioactive dietary components are of particular interest in the field of epigenetics. Many of these compounds display anticancer properties and may play a role in cancer prevention. Numerous studies suggest that a number of nutritional compounds have epigenetic targets in cancer cells. Importantly, emerging evidence strongly suggests that consumption of dietary agents can alter normal epigenetic states as well as reverse abnormal gene activation or silencing. Epigenetic modifications induced by bioactive dietary compounds are thought to be beneficial. Substantial evidence is mounting proclaiming that commonly consumed bioactive dietary factors act to modify the epigenome and may be incorporated into an 'epigenetic diet'. Bioactive nutritional components of an epigenetic diet may be incorporated into one's regular dietary regimen and used therapeutically for medicinal or chemopreventive purposes. This article will primarily focus on dietary factors that have been demonstrated to influence the epigenome and that may be used in conjunction with other cancer prevention and chemotherapeutic therapies.

  17. A proposed relationship between circumcision and neural reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Immerman, R S; Mackey, W C

    1998-09-01

    Humans are intensely biocultural beings. The linkages and causal feedback loops among their symbolic world, their cultural world, and their physical bodies can be exquisitely complex and subtle. It is suggested in this article that one cultural event--circumcision--exemplifies that subtlety and complexity. It is hypothesized that circumcision reorganizes the male's sensory somato-cortex to raise the threshold of sexual excitability/distraction. This threshold shift thereby allows the young men of a social group (a) to be slightly more tractable in executing corporate activities beneficial to the community and (b) to be slightly more restrained sexually and more cooperative in the pair bond. The practice is accepted because the procedure is deeply enmeshed in the ritual and symbolic life of the social group and is applicable to all young males. Suggestions are made on how to test this hypothesis empirically.

  18. Protein degradation during reconsolidation as a mechanism for memory reorganization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bong-Kiun Kaang

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Memory is a reference formed from a past experience that is used to respond to present situations. However, the world is dynamic and situations change, so it is important to update the memory with new information each time it is reactivated in order to adjust the response in the future. Recent researches indicate that memory may undergo a dynamic process that could work as an updating mechanism. This process which is called reconsolidation involves destabilization of the memory after it is reactivated, followed by restabilization. Recently, it has been demonstrated that the initial destabilization process of reconsolidation requires protein degradation. Using protein degradation inhibition as a method to block reconsolidation, recent researches suggest that reconsolidation, especially the protein degradation-dependent destabilization process is necessary for memory reorganization.

  19. Time scales in epigenetic dynamics and phenotypic heterogeneity of embryonic stem cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masaki Sasai

    Full Text Available A remarkable feature of the self-renewing population of embryonic stem cells (ESCs is their phenotypic heterogeneity: Nanog and other marker proteins of ESCs show large cell-to-cell variation in their expression level, which should significantly influence the differentiation process of individual cells. The molecular mechanism and biological implication of this heterogeneity, however, still remain elusive. We address this problem by constructing a model of the core gene-network of mouse ESCs. The model takes account of processes of binding/unbinding of transcription factors, formation/dissolution of transcription apparatus, and modification of histone code at each locus of genes in the network. These processes are hierarchically interrelated to each other forming the dynamical feedback loops. By simulating stochastic dynamics of this model, we show that the phenotypic heterogeneity of ESCs can be explained when the chromatin at the Nanog locus undergoes the large scale reorganization in formation/dissolution of transcription apparatus, which should have the timescale similar to the cell cycle period. With this slow transcriptional switching of Nanog, the simulated ESCs fluctuate among multiple transient states, which can trigger the differentiation into the lineage-specific cell states. From the simulated transitions among cell states, the epigenetic landscape underlying transitions is calculated. The slow Nanog switching gives rise to the wide basin of ESC states in the landscape. The bimodal Nanog distribution arising from the kinetic flow running through this ESC basin prevents transdifferentiation and promotes the definite decision of the cell fate. These results show that the distribution of timescales of the regulatory processes is decisively important to characterize the fluctuation of cells and their differentiation process. The analyses through the epigenetic landscape and the kinetic flow on the landscape should provide a guideline to

  20. 77 FR 14493 - Reorganization/Expansion of Foreign-Trade Zone 77 Under Alternative Site Framework Memphis...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-12

    ... [Order No. 1817] Reorganization/Expansion of Foreign-Trade Zone 77 Under Alternative Site Framework..., 01/22/2009; 75 FR 71069- 71070, 11/22/2010) as an option for the establishment or reorganization of...

  1. Quantification of LLAEP interhemispheric symmetry by the intraclass correlation coefficient as a measure of cortical reorganization after cochlear implantation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Castaneda-Villa, Norma; Cornejo, Juan M.; James, Christopher J.; Maurits, Natasha M.

    2012-01-01

    Objective: Electrical stimulation by a cochlear implant (CI) induces maturation of the auditory system and reorganization of the auditory cortex in deaf children. Cortical reorganization produces an interhemispheric asymmetry in auditory evoked brain potentials associated with sound stimulation

  2. Epigenetics in Reactive and Reparative Cardiac Fibrogenesis: The Promise of Epigenetic Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghosh, Asish K; Rai, Rahul; Flevaris, Panagiotis; Vaughan, Douglas E

    2017-08-01

    Epigenetic changes play a pivotal role in the development of a wide spectrum of human diseases including cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes, and intellectual disabilities. Cardiac fibrogenesis is a common pathophysiological process seen during chronic and stress-induced accelerated cardiac aging. While adequate production of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins is necessary for post-injury wound healing, excessive synthesis and accumulation of extracellular matrix protein in the stressed or injured hearts causes decreased or loss of lusitropy that leads to cardiac failure. This self-perpetuating deposition of collagen and other matrix proteins eventually alter cellular homeostasis; impair tissue elasticity and leads to multi-organ failure, as seen during pathogenesis of cardiovascular diseases, chronic kidney diseases, cirrhosis, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, and scleroderma. In the last 25 years, multiple studies have investigated the molecular basis of organ fibrosis and highlighted its multi-factorial genetic, epigenetic, and environmental regulation. In this minireview, we focus on five major epigenetic regulators and discuss their central role in cardiac fibrogenesis. Additionally, we compare and contrast the epigenetic regulation of hypertension-induced reactive fibrogenesis and myocardial infarction-induced reparative or replacement cardiac fibrogenesis. As microRNAs-one of the major epigenetic regulators-circulate in plasma, we also advocate their potential diagnostic role in cardiac fibrosis. Lastly, we discuss the evolution of novel epigenetic-regulating drugs and predict their clinical role in the suppression of pathological cardiac remodeling, cardiac aging, and heart failure. J. Cell. Physiol. 232: 1941-1956, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Congruency of body-related information induces somatosensory reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardini, Flavia; Longo, Matthew R

    2016-04-01

    Chronic pain and impaired tactile sensitivity are frequently associated with "blurred" representations in the somatosensory cortex. The factors that produce such somatosensory blurring, however, remain poorly understood. We manipulated visuo-tactile congruence to investigate its role in promoting somatosensory reorganization. To this aim we used the mirror box illusion that produced in participants the subjective feeling of looking directly at their left hand, though they were seeing the reflection of their right hand. Simultaneous touches were applied to the middle or ring finger of each hand. In one session, the same fingers were touched (for example both middle fingers), producing a congruent percept; in the other session different fingers were touched, producing an incongruent percept. In the somatosensory system, suppressive interactions between adjacent stimuli are an index of intracortical inhibitory function. After each congruent and incongruent session, we recorded somatosensory evoked potential (SEPs) elicited by electrocutaneous stimulation of the left ring and middle fingers, either individually or simultaneously. A somatosensory suppression index (SSI) was calculated as the difference in amplitude between the sum of potentials evoked by the two individually stimulated fingers and the potentials evoked by simultaneous stimulation of both fingers. This SSI can be taken as an index of the strength of inhibitory interactions and consequently can provide a measure of how distinct the representations of the two fingers are. Results showed stronger SSI in the P100 component after congruent than incongruent stimulation, suggesting the key role of congruent sensory information about the body in inducing somatosensory reorganization. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Large-Scale Functional Brain Network Reorganization During Taoist Meditation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jao, Tun; Li, Chia-Wei; Vértes, Petra E; Wu, Changwei Wesley; Achard, Sophie; Hsieh, Chao-Hsien; Liou, Chien-Hui; Chen, Jyh-Horng; Bullmore, Edward T

    2016-02-01

    Meditation induces a distinct and reversible mental state that provides insights into brain correlates of consciousness. We explored brain network changes related to meditation by graph theoretical analysis of resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging data. Eighteen Taoist meditators with varying levels of expertise were scanned using a within-subjects counterbalanced design during resting and meditation states. State-related differences in network topology were measured globally and at the level of individual nodes and edges. Although measures of global network topology, such as small-worldness, were unchanged, meditation was characterized by an extensive and expertise-dependent reorganization of the hubs (highly connected nodes) and edges (functional connections). Areas of sensory cortex, especially the bilateral primary visual and auditory cortices, and the bilateral temporopolar areas, which had the highest degree (or connectivity) during the resting state, showed the biggest decrease during meditation. Conversely, bilateral thalamus and components of the default mode network, mainly the bilateral precuneus and posterior cingulate cortex, had low degree in the resting state but increased degree during meditation. Additionally, these changes in nodal degree were accompanied by reorganization of anatomical orientation of the edges. During meditation, long-distance longitudinal (antero-posterior) edges increased proportionally, whereas orthogonal long-distance transverse (right-left) edges connecting bilaterally homologous cortices decreased. Our findings suggest that transient changes in consciousness associated with meditation introduce convergent changes in the topological and spatial properties of brain functional networks, and the anatomical pattern of integration might be as important as the global level of integration when considering the network basis for human consciousness.

  5. A gauge-invariant reorganization of thermal gauge theory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Su, Nan

    2010-07-01

    This dissertation is devoted to the study of thermodynamics for quantum gauge theories. The poor convergence of quantum field theory at finite temperature has been the main obstacle in the practical applications of thermal QCD for decades. In this dissertation I apply hard-thermal-loop perturbation theory, which is a gauge-invariant reorganization of the conventional perturbative expansion for quantum gauge theories to the thermodynamics of QED and Yang-Mills theory to three-loop order. For the Abelian case, I present a calculation of the free energy of a hot gas of electrons and photons by expanding in a power series in m{sub D}/T, m{sub f}/T and e{sup 2}, where m{sub D} and m{sub f} are the photon and electron thermal masses, respectively, and e is the coupling constant. I demonstrate that the hard-thermal-loop perturbation reorganization improves the convergence of the successive approximations to the QED free energy at large coupling, e {proportional_to} 2. For the non-Abelian case, I present a calculation of the free energy of a hot gas of gluons by expanding in a power series in m{sub D}/T and g{sup 2}, where m{sub D} is the gluon thermal mass and g is the coupling constant. I show that at three-loop order hard-thermal-loop perturbation theory is compatible with lattice results for the pressure, energy density, and entropy down to temperatures T {proportional_to} 2 - 3 T{sub c}. The results suggest that HTLpt provides a systematic framework that can be used to calculate static and dynamic quantities for temperatures relevant at LHC. (orig.)

  6. Analysis of Septin Reorganization at Cytokinesis Using Polarized Fluorescence Microscopy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Molly McQuilken

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Septins are conserved filament-forming proteins that act in diverse cellular processes. They closely associate with membranes and, in some systems, components of the cytoskeleton. It is not well understood how filaments assemble into higher-order structures in vivo or how they are remodeled throughout the cell cycle. In the budding yeast S. cerevisiae, septins are found through most of the cell cycle in an hourglass organization at the mother-bud neck until cytokinesis when the collar splits into two rings that disassemble prior to the next cell cycle. Experiments using polarized fluorescence microscopy have suggested that septins are arranged in ordered, paired filaments in the hourglass and undergo a coordinated 90° reorientation during splitting at cytokinesis. This apparent reorganization could be due to two orthogonal populations of filaments disassembling and reassembling or being preferentially retained at cytokinesis. In support of this idea, we report a decrease in septin concentration at the mother-bud neck during cytokinesis consistent with other reports and the timing of the decrease depends on known septin regulators including the Gin4 kinase. We took a candidate-based approach to examine what factors control reorientation during splitting and used polarized fluorescence microscopy to screen mutant yeast strains deficient in septin interacting proteins. Using this method, we have linked known septin regulators to different aspects of the assembly, stability, and reorganization of septin assemblies. The data support that ring splitting requires Gin4 activity and an anillin-like protein Bud4, and normal accumulation of septins at the ring requires phosphorylation of Shs1. We found distinct regulatory requirements for septin organization in the hourglass compared to split rings. We propose that septin subpopulations can vary in their localization and assembly/disassembly behavior in a cell-cycle dependent manner at cytokinesis.

  7. Cortical Reorganization in Dual Innervation by Single Peripheral Nerve.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Mou-Xiong; Shen, Yun-Dong; Hua, Xu-Yun; Hou, Ao-Lin; Zhu, Yi; Xu, Wen-Dong

    2017-09-21

    Functional recovery after peripheral nerve injury and repair is related with cortical reorganization. However, the mechanism of innervating dual targets by 1 donor nerve is largely unknown. To investigate the cortical reorganization when the phrenic nerve simultaneously innervates the diaphragm and biceps. Total brachial plexus (C5-T1) injury rats were repaired by phrenic nerve-musculocutaneous nerve transfer with end-to-side (n = 15) or end-to-end (n = 15) neurorrhaphy. Brachial plexus avulsion (n = 5) and sham surgery (n = 5) rats were included for control. Behavioral observation, electromyography, and histologic studies were used for confirming peripheral nerve reinnervation. Cortical representations of the diaphragm and reinnervated biceps were studied by intracortical microstimulation techniques before and at months 0.5, 3, 5, 7, and 10 after surgery. At month 0.5 after complete brachial plexus injury, the motor representation of the injured forelimb disappeared. The diaphragm representation was preserved in the "end-to-side" group but absent in the "end-to-end" group. Rhythmic contraction of biceps appeared in "end-to-end" and "end-to-side" groups, and the biceps representation reappeared in the original biceps and diaphragm areas at months 3 and 5. At month 10, it was completely located in the original biceps area in the "end-to-end" group. Part of the biceps representation remained in the original diaphragm area in the "end-to-side" group. Destroying the contralateral motor cortex did not eliminate respiration-related contraction of biceps. The brain tends to resume biceps representation from the original diaphragm area to the original biceps area following phrenic nerve transfer. The original diaphragm area partly preserves reinnervated biceps representation after end-to-side transfer. Copyright © 2017 by the Congress of Neurological Surgeons

  8. Potential of epigenetic therapies in the management of solid tumors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Valdespino, Victor; Valdespino, Patricia M

    2015-01-01

    Cancer is a complex disease with both genetic and epigenetic origins. The growing field of epigenetics has contributed to our understanding of oncogenesis and tumor progression, and has allowed the development of novel therapeutic drugs. First-generation epigenetic inhibitor drugs have obtained modest clinical results in two types of hematological malignancy. Second-generation epigenetic inhibitors are in development, and have intrinsically greater selectivity for their molecular targets. Solid tumors are more genetic and epigenetically complex than hematological malignancies, but the transcriptome and epigenome biomarkers have been identified for many of these malignancies. This solid tumor molecular aberration profile may be modified using specific or quasi-specific epidrugs together with conventional and innovative anticancer treatments. In this critical review, we briefly analyze the strategies to select the targeted epigenetic changes, enumerate the second-generation epigenetic inhibitors, and describe the main signs indicating the potential of epigenetic therapies in the management of solid tumors. We also highlight the work of consortia or academic organizations that support the undertaking of human epigenetic therapeutic projects as well as some examples of transcriptome/epigenome profile determination in clinical assessment of cancer patients treated with epidrugs. There is a good chance that epigenetic therapies will be able to be used in patients with solid tumors in the future. This may happen soon through collaboration of diverse scientific groups, making the selection of targeted epigenetic aberration(s) more rapid, the design and probe of drug candidates, accelerating in vitro and in vivo assays, and undertaking new cancer epigenetic-therapy clinical trails

  9. Epigenetics: An Emerging Framework for Advanced Practice Psychiatric Nursing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeSocio, Janiece E

    2016-07-01

    The aims of this paper are to synthesize and report research findings from neuroscience and epigenetics that contribute to an emerging explanatory framework for advanced practice psychiatric nursing. Discoveries in neuroscience and epigenetics reveal synergistic mechanisms that support the integration of psychotherapy, psychopharmacology, and psychoeducation in practice. Advanced practice psychiatric nurses will benefit from an expanded knowledge base in neuroscience and epigenetics that informs and explains the scientific rationale for our integrated practice. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. Targeting Epigenetic Mechanisms in Pain due to Trauma and TBI

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-10-01

    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-14-1-0579 TITLE: Targeting Epigenetic Mechanisms in Pain due to Trauma and TBI PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: David J. Clark, MD... Epigenetic Mechanisms in Pain due to Trauma and TBI 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) David J. Clark, MD Email... epigenetic changes occurring in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord after either brain or peripheral trauma may support chronic pain. Our work to-date

  11. Targeting Epigenetics Therapy for Estrogen Receptor-Negative Breast Cancers

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-10-01

    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-13-1-0400 TITLE: Targeting Epigenetics Therapy for Estrogen Receptor-Negative Breast Cancers PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR...Targeting Epigenetics Therapy for Estrogen Receptor-Negative Breast Cancers 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-13-1-0400 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6...negative breast cancer, epigenetics , nuclear hormone receptor, estrogen Overall Project Summary Flavin-dependent, lysine-specific protein

  12. Environmental Epigenetics: Crossroad between Public Health, Lifestyle, and Cancer Prevention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romani, Massimo; Pistillo, Maria Pia; Banelli, Barbara

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetics provides the key to transform the genetic information into phenotype and because of its reversibility it is considered an ideal target for therapeutic interventions. This paper reviews the basic mechanisms of epigenetic control: DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling, and ncRNA expression and their role in disease development. We describe also the influence of the environment, lifestyle, nutritional habits, and the psychological influence on epigenetic marks and how these factors are related to cancer and other diseases development. Finally we discuss the potential use of natural epigenetic modifiers in the chemoprevention of cancer to link together public health, environment, and lifestyle. PMID:26339624

  13. Epigenetic Silencing and Resistance to Imatinib Mesylate in CML

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Issa, Jean-Pierre

    2004-01-01

    ...). In this project, we are exploring the hypothesis that epigenetic silencing associated with promoter DNA methylation mediates resistance in selected cases, and that reversal of silencing by decitabine...

  14. Epigenetic Silencing and Resistance to Imatinib Mesylate in CML

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Issa, Jean-Pierre

    2005-01-01

    ...). In this project, we are exploring the hypothesis that epigenetic silencing associated with promoter DNA methylation mediates resistance in selected cases, and that reversal of silencing by decitabine...

  15. 2009 Epigenetics Gordon Research Conference (August 9 - 14, 2009)

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    Jeanie Lee

    2009-08-14

    Epigenetics refers to the study of heritable changes in genome function that occur without a change in primary DNA sequence. The 2009 Gordon Conference in Epigenetics will feature discussion of various epigenetic phenomena, emerging understanding of their underlying mechanisms, and the growing appreciation that human, animal, and plant health all depend on proper epigenetic control. Special emphasis will be placed on genome-environment interactions particularly as they relate to human disease. Towards improving knowledge of molecular mechanisms, the conference will feature international leaders studying the roles of higher order chromatin structure, noncoding RNA, repeat elements, nuclear organization, and morphogenic evolution. Traditional and new model organisms are selected from plants, fungi, and metazoans.

  16. Epigenetic mechanisms in the initiation of hematological malignancies

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    Ali Maleki

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Cancer development is not restricted to the genetic changes, but also to epigenetic changes. Epigenetic processes are very important in the development of hematological malignancies. The main epigenetic alterations are aberrations in DNA methylation, post-translational modifications of histones, chromatin remodeling and microRNAs patterns, and these are associated with tumor genesis. All the various cellular pathways contributing to the neoplastic phenotype are affected by epigenetic genes in cancer. These pathways can be explored as biomarkers in clinical use for early detection of disease, malignancy classification and response to treatment with classical chemotherapy agents and epigenetic drugs. Materials and Method: A literature review was performed using PUBMED from 1985 to 2008. Cross referencing of discovered articles was also reviewed.Results: In chronic lymphocytic leukemia, regional hypermethylation of gene promoters leads to gene silencing. Many of these genes have tumor suppressor phenotypes. In myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS, CDKN2B (alias, P15, a cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor that negatively regulates the cell cycle, has been shown to be hypermethylated in marrow stem (CD34+ cells in patients with MDS. At present both Vidaza and Decitabine (DNA methyltransferase inhibitors are approved for the treatment of MDS.Conclusion: Unlike mutations or deletions, DNA hypermethylation and histone deacetylation are potentially reversible by pharmacological inhibition, therefore those epigenetic changes have been recognized as promising novel therapeutic targets in hematopoietic malignances. In this review, we discussed molecular mechanisms of epigenetics, epigenetic changes in hematological malignancies and epigenetic based treatments

  17. [Early determinants of health and disease: epigenetics and environment].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Junien, Claudine

    2011-03-01

    Several studies of the developmental origins of health and disease and metabolic programming have identified links between early nutrition, epigenetic processes and long-term illness. The ways in which epigenetic modifications fix the effects of early environmental events, leading to sustained responses to transient stimuli, modified gene expression patterns and altered phenotypes in later life, is a topic of considerable interest. This review focuses on recently discovered mechanisms, and challenges prevailing views on the dynamics, position and functions of epigenetic marks. Most epigenetic studies have addressed long-term effects of environmental stressors on a small number of epigenetic marks, at the pan-genomic or individual gene level, in humans and animal models. In parallel, studies of humans and mice, using high-throughput technologies, have revealed additional complexity in epigenetic processes, notably highlighting the importance of crosstalk between different epigenetic marks. A self-propagating epigenetic cycle has also been identified. Recent studies have shown clear sexual dimorphism both in programming trajectories and in response to a given environmental insult. Despite recent progress we are still far from understanding how, when and where environmental stressors disturb key epigenetic mechanisms. Further work is needed to identify original key marks and their changes during development, throughout an individual's lifetime or over several generations, and to determine how to revert malprogramming with a view to prevention and treatment.

  18. Environmental Epigenetics: Crossroad between Public Health, Lifestyle, and Cancer Prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romani, Massimo; Pistillo, Maria Pia; Banelli, Barbara

    2015-01-01

    Epigenetics provides the key to transform the genetic information into phenotype and because of its reversibility it is considered an ideal target for therapeutic interventions. This paper reviews the basic mechanisms of epigenetic control: DNA methylation, histone modifications, chromatin remodeling, and ncRNA expression and their role in disease development. We describe also the influence of the environment, lifestyle, nutritional habits, and the psychological influence on epigenetic marks and how these factors are related to cancer and other diseases development. Finally we discuss the potential use of natural epigenetic modifiers in the chemoprevention of cancer to link together public health, environment, and lifestyle.

  19. Epigenetic modifications as novel therapeutic targets for Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fengli; Fischhaber, Paula L; Guo, Caixia; Tang, Tie-Shan

    2014-06-01

    Huntington's disease is a late-onset, autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder characterized by motor, cognitive and psychiatric symptomatology. The earliest stage of Huntington's disease is marked by alterations in gene expression, which partially results from dysregulated epigenetic modifications. In past decades, altered epigenetic markers including histone modifications (acetylation, methylation, ubiquitylation and phosphorylation) and DNA modifications (cytosine methylation and hydroxymethylation) have been reported as important epigenetic features in patients and multiple animal models of Huntington's disease. Drugs aimed to correct some of those alterations have shown promise in treating Huntington's disease. This article discusses the field of epigenetics for potential Huntington's disease interventions and presents the most recent findings in this area.

  20. Epigenetic Silencing and Resistance to Imatinib Mesylate in CML

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Issa, Jean-Pierre

    2006-01-01

    ...). In this project we are exploring the hypothesis that epigenetic silencing associated with promoter DNA methylation mediates resistance in selected cases and that reversal of silencing by decitabine...