Introduction:. Epigenetics Studies The Biological Information

1364 WordsApr 28, 20176 Pages
Introduction: Epigenetics studies the biological information that can be inherited in addition to the DNA, through biochemical changes such as methylation and histone modifications that can affect gene expression and lead to a particular phenotype [9]. Epigenetic plasticity can be influenced by internal and external factors, such as the in utero environment of early development [9]. The intrauterine environment can have short and long term effects on the health and future disease state of offspring. To look into the effects of the intrauterine environment, several factors need to be taken into account. This discussion will include the effects of maternal environmental conditions on the health of offspring, including type 1 and 2 diabetes,…show more content…
The outcomes of gestational diabetes can be studied by looking at the health of offspring of these mothers over time. In one study, intrauterine exposure to gestational diabetes mellitus was related to metabolic syndrome in children of mothers with and without GDM and with conditions such as large-for-gestational-age (LGA) and appropriate-for-gestational age (AGA) [2]. Through biochemical testing of the experimental groups of children, components of metabolic syndrome could be detected, such as obesity by BMI, blood pressure, and glucose levels [2]. It was found that, in a controlled study, the LGA/GDM group correlated to maternal obesity environments by having higher occurrence of insulin resistance, which would be expected with weight gain and exposure to diabetes [2]. This suggests that metabolic factors due to the intrauterine environment contribute to disease in later life through epigenetic changes. Many research studies have looked into the mechanisms that lead offspring exposed to GDM to be at higher risk for diseases, metabolic and chronic [13]. It was found through research that the mechanism with GDM exposure evaluated the methylome of the offspring using epigenetics [13]. In this study, 30 out of 44 newborns were exposed to GDM and their DNA methylation was measured at more than 485,000 CpG sites with over 3000 genes from placenta and cord blood samples [13]. Though the results were not
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