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transgenerational inheritance

Jay B Hollick
Paramutation describes a process that results in heritable epigenetic changes of gene regulation and trans-homologue interactions. Recent discoveries in model organisms have highlighted roles for the respective nuclear systems that regulate transposons via small RNA molecules both for paramutation and for defining transgenerational inheritance. Differences between plants and animals may influence specific transmission behaviours but the involvement of small RNA-based mechanisms identifies a unifying eukaryotic theme...
October 17, 2016: Nature Reviews. Genetics
Cheryl Li, Olivia Casanueva
Abundant evidence shows that the genome is not as static as once thought and that gene expression can be reversibly modulated by the environment. In some cases, these changes can be transmitted to the next generation even if the environment has reverted. Such transgenerational epigenetic inheritance requires that information be stored in the germline in response to exogenous stressors. One of the most elusive questions in the field of epigenetic inheritance is the identity of such inherited factor(s). Answering this question would allow us to understand how the environment can shape human populations for multiple generations and may help to explain the rapid rise in obesity and neurodegenerative diseases in modern society...
October 15, 2016: Essays in Biochemistry
Leandro Quadrana, Vincent Colot
Transgenerational epigenetics is defined in opposition to developmental epigenetics and implies an absence of resetting of epigenetic states between generations. Unlike mammals, plants appear to be particularly prone to this type of inheritance. In this review, we summarize our knowledge about transgenerational epigenetics in plants, which entails heritable changes in DNA methylation. We emphasize the role of transposable elements and other repeat sequences in the creation of epimutable alleles. We also argue that because reprogramming of DNA methylation across generations seems limited in plants, the inheritance of DNA methylation defects results from the failure to reinforce rather than reset this modification during sexual reproduction...
October 6, 2016: Annual Review of Genetics
Janine Aucamp, Abel J Bronkhorst, Christoffel P S Badenhorst, Piet J Pretorius
The discovery of quantitative and qualitative differences of the circulating DNA (cirDNA) between healthy and diseased individuals inclined researchers to investigate these molecules as potential biomarkers for non-invasive diagnosis and prognosis of various pathologies. However, except for some prenatal tests, cirDNA analyses have not been readily translated to clinical practice due to a lack of knowledge regarding its composition, function, and biological and evolutionary origins. We believe that, to fully grasp the nature of cirDNA and the extracellular vesicles (EVs) and protein complexes with which it is associated, it is necessary to probe the early and badly neglected work that contributed to the discovery and development of these concepts...
September 20, 2016: Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences: CMLS
BingKan Xue, Stanislas Leibler
Organisms can adapt to a randomly varying environment by creating phenotypic diversity in their population, a phenomenon often referred to as "bet hedging." The favorable level of phenotypic diversity depends on the statistics of environmental variations over timescales of many generations. Could organisms gather such long-term environmental information to adjust their phenotypic diversity? We show that this process can be achieved through a simple and general learning mechanism based on a transgenerational feedback: The phenotype of the parent is progressively reinforced in the distribution of phenotypes among the offspring...
October 4, 2016: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Bridget B Baker, Jeremiah S Yee, Danielle N Meyer, Doris Yang, Tracie R Baker
We have shown that zebrafish (Danio rerio) are an excellent model for evaluating the link between early life stage exposure to environmental chemicals and disease in adulthood and subsequent unexposed generations. Previously, we used this model to identify transgenerational effects of dioxin (2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin [TCDD]) on skeletal development, sex ratio, and reproductive capacity. Transgenerational inheritance of TCDD toxicity, notably decreased reproductive capacity, appears to be mediated through the male germ line...
October 2016: Zebrafish
Undraga Schagdarsurengin, Klaus Steger
Epigenetic inheritance and its underlying molecular mechanisms are among the most intriguing areas of current biological and medical research. To date, studies have shown that both female and male germline development follow distinct paths of epigenetic events and both oocyte and sperm possess their own unique epigenomes. Fertilizing male and female germ cells deliver not only their haploid genomes but also their epigenomes, which contain the code for preimplantation and postimplantation reprogramming and embryonal development...
October 2016: Nature Reviews. Urology
Nino A Espinas, Hidetoshi Saze, Yusuke Saijo
Immune recognition of pathogen-associated molecular patterns or effectors leads to defense activation at the pathogen challenged sites. This is followed by systemic defense activation at distant non-challenged sites, termed systemic acquired resistance (SAR). These inducible defenses are accompanied by extensive transcriptional reprogramming of defense-related genes. SAR is associated with priming, in which a subset of these genes is kept at a poised state to facilitate subsequent transcriptional regulation...
2016: Frontiers in Plant Science
Kelly Dew-Budd, Julie Jarnigan, Laura K Reed
An organism's phenotype is the product of its environment and genotype, but an ancestor's environment can also be a contributing factor. The recent increase in caloric intake and decrease in physical activity of developed nations' populations is contributing to deteriorating health and making the study of the longer term impacts of a changing lifestyle a priority. The dietary habits of ancestors have been shown to affect phenotype in several organisms, including humans, mice, and the fruit fly. Whether the ancestral dietary effect is purely environmental or if there is a genetic interaction with the environment passed down for multiple generations, has not been determined previously...
2016: PloS One
Melvin Khee-Shing Leow
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 2016: Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Norikatsu Miyoshi, Jente M Stel, Keiko Shioda, Na Qu, Junko Odahima, Shino Mitsunaga, Xiangfan Zhang, Makoto Nagano, Konrad Hochedlinger, Kurt J Isselbacher, Toshi Shioda
The genome-wide depletion of 5-methylcytosines (5meCs) caused by passive dilution through DNA synthesis without daughter strand methylation and active enzymatic processes resulting in replacement of 5meCs with unmethylated cytosines is a hallmark of primordial germ cells (PGCs). Although recent studies have shown that in vitro differentiation of pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) to PGC-like cells (PGCLCs) mimics the in vivo differentiation of epiblast cells to PGCs, how DNA methylation status of PGCLCs resembles the dynamics of 5meC erasure in embryonic PGCs remains controversial...
August 23, 2016: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Inger-Lise Steffensen
BACKGROUND/AIM: Exposure to 45% fat diet in utero and during nursing increased body weight and small intestinal tumor numbers in adult F1 multiple intestinal neoplasia (Min/+) mice, implicating that early-life obesogenic conditions predispose for obesity and intestinal tumorigenesis later in life. In this study, it was examined whether these effects were transferred to the next two generations. RESULTS: In F2 mice, exposed to the obesogenic diet as germ cells within the embryonic F1 mice, there were no consistent differences in body weight, blood glucose levels or small intestinal tumor numbers whether their mother or father, both, or no parents were exposed to 45% vs...
August 2016: Anticancer Research
Kostas A Triantaphyllopoulos, Ioannis Ikonomopoulos, Andrew J Bannister
Epigenetic inheritance plays a crucial role in many biological processes, such as gene expression in early embryo development, imprinting and the silencing of transposons. It has recently been established that epigenetic effects can be inherited from one generation to the next. Here, we review examples of epigenetic mechanisms governing animal phenotype and behaviour, and we discuss the importance of these findings in respect to animal studies, and livestock in general. Epigenetic parameters orchestrating transgenerational effects, as well as heritable disorders, and the often-overlooked areas of livestock immunity and stress, are also discussed...
2016: Epigenetics & Chromatin
Pavel Babica, Rimma Zurabian, Esha R Kumar, Rajus Chopra, Maxwell J Mianecki, Joon-Suk Park, Libor Jaša, James E Trosko, Brad L Upham
Methoxychlor (MXC) and vinclozolin (VIN) are well-recognized endocrine disrupting chemicals known to alter epigenetic regulations and transgenerational inheritance; however, non-endocrine disruption endpoints are also important. Thus, we determined the effects of MXC and VIN on the dysregulation of gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) and activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) in WB-F344 rat liver epithelial cells. Both chemicals induced a rapid dysregulation of GJIC at non-cytotoxic doses, with 30 min EC50 values for GJIC inhibition being 10 µM for MXC and 126 µM for VIN...
September 2016: Toxicological Sciences: An Official Journal of the Society of Toxicology
John S Torday, William B Miller
The conventional understanding of phenotype is as a derivative of descent with modification through Darwinian random mutation and natural selection. Recent research has revealed Lamarckian inheritance as a major transgenerational mechanism for environmental action on genomes whose extent is determined, in significant part, by germ line cells during meiosis and subsequent stages of embryological development. In consequence, the role of phenotype can productively be reconsidered. The possibility that phenotype is directed towards the effective acquisition of epigenetic marks in consistent reciprocation with the environment during the life cycle of an organism is explored...
2016: Biology
Martyn Pickersgill
Epigenetic processes are garnering attention in the social sciences, where some scholars assert their importance for theorizing social life. I engage with such ideas here by drawing on interviews with leading bioscientists. To begin with, I underscore the (productive) uncertainties of those working in and around epigenetics; I describe these as a manifestation of 'epistemic modesty', and suggest that dissensus helps to propel biomedical innovation. Then, drawing on the concept of 'alien science', I detail some researchers' ambivalences regarding the notion of 'transgenerational inheritance'; their dissatisfaction with the (public) communication practices of other scientists (situated in what I term a regime of 'epistemic ostentatiousness'); and the challenges faced when moderating societal discussion of epigenetics in ways that expand excitement whilst deflating (what researchers regard as) unrealistic expectations...
March 2016: Sociological Review Mongraph
Andrew Schuster, Michael K Skinner, Wei Yan
Exposure to the agricultural fungicide vinclozolin during gestation promotes a higher incidence of various diseases in the subsequent unexposed F3 and F4 generations. This phenomenon is termed epigenetic transgenerational inheritance and has been shown to in part involve alterations in DNA methylation, but the role of other epigenetic mechanisms remains unknown. The current study investigated the alterations in small noncoding RNA (sncRNA) in the sperm from F3 generation control and vinclozolin lineage rats...
2016: Environmental Epigenetics
Mark A Hanson, Michael K Skinner
Environmental factors can induce epigenetic alterations in the germ cells that can potentially be transmitted transgenerationally. This non-genetic form of inheritance is termed epigenetic transgenerational inheritance and has been shown in a variety of species including plants, flies, worms, fish, rodents, pigs, and humans. This phenomenon operates during specific critical windows of exposure, linked to the developmental biology of the germ cells (sperm and eggs). Therefore, concepts of the developmental origins of transgenerational inheritance of phenotypic variation and subsequent disease risk need to include epigenetic processes affecting the developmental biology of the germ cell...
2016: Environmental Epigenetics
Andreas Vilcinskas
Recent studies addressing experimental host-parasite coevolution and transgenerational immune priming in insects provide evidence for heritable shifts in host resistance or parasite virulence. These rapid reciprocal adaptations may thus be transferred to offspring generations by either genetic changes or mechanisms that do not involve changes in the germline DNA sequence. Epigenetic inheritance refers to changes in gene expression that are heritable across generations and mediated by epigenetic modifications passed from parents to offspring...
August 2016: Zoology: Analysis of Complex Systems, ZACS
Jonathan Day, Soham Savani, Benjamin D Krempley, Matthew Nguyen, Joanna B Kitlinska
Historically, research into congenital defects has focused on maternal impacts on the fetal genome during gestation and prenatal periods. However, recent findings have sparked interest in epigenetic alterations of paternal genomes and its effects on offspring. This emergent field focuses on how environmental influences can epigenetically alter gene expression and ultimately change the phenotype and behavior of progeny. There are three primary mechanisms implicated in these changes: DNA methylation, histone modification, and miRNA expression...
2016: American Journal of Stem Cells
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