How Does The Change Affect Our Grandchildren?

990 Words4 Pages
By studying Epigenetics, we learn about the changes in heritable genome function without changes in the DNA sequence itself. Transgenerational inheritance requires a chromosomal or epigenetic change in the germline allowing the information to be passed on from one generation to another (Anway et al 2005a). In order for epigenetic marks to be passed down, the gametes need to conserve their epigenomes by avoiding two reprogramming events; in the gamete and zygote. It has generally been accepted that epigenetic marks are removed and re-established in the preceding generation, thus not inherited. However, studies being carried out on model organisms are challenging this concept and suggesting that this may not be entirely correct. There may be an incomplete erasure of epigenetic marks resulting in transgenerational epigenetic inheritance (Youngson and Whitelaw 2008). The present generations were being synthesised in the womb of their grandmother. Therefore, did the food my grandmother ate affect my development? Could the air we breathe affect our grandchildren? Many questions are still unknown in this field. The environment and external factors may cause additional information to be added on top of the genome resulting in phenotypic variation and disease leading to transgenerational epigenetic inheritance. Epigenetic modifications of the germline are not only important to evolutionary biologists and disease aetiology but also ecologists, as incomplete epigenetic changes can

More about How Does The Change Affect Our Grandchildren?

Get Access