Transgenerational Epigenetics

Decent Essays
To understand epigenetics and transgenerational epigenetics in greater detail we need to obtain a clearer picture of the underlying molecular mechanisms. Lim and Brunet (2013) revealed that environmental stimuli can influence the chromatin structure by noncoding RNAs- including siRNA (small interfering RNA, worm), piRNA ((Piwi-interacting RNA, worm and fly), viRNA (small interfering RNAs derived from virus, worm), miRNA (micro RNA, mice)- DNA methylation (mice, rat) and histone modification (with the help of Histone methyltransferase poteins)- H3K4me2/3 (worm), H3K36me3 (worm), H3K36me3 (worm, fly), H3K9me2/3 (worm, fly), H3K27me3 (mice, human). Prion proteins might also play role (yeast). These changes might influence the metabolics, which changes the expression of different chemicals and are themselves potential environmental stress factors; thus, they could initiate epigenomic changes. Chromatin modifications…show more content…
This would be a mechanism for active transgenerational epigenetics progression. However, we cannot deny the recent data. Transgenerational epigenetics might be mainly passive as a result from the incomplete erasure of epigenetic marks through the development stages. As mentioned, evidence has been limited mainly to the F2 generation, only some reports have shown transgenerational epigenetics reaching the F3 and F4 generations; therefore, a strong positive feedback loop seems to be absent. If, however, epigenetics are a test-bed during evolution an intersection will exist. Either the new trait is beneficially, then the trait will be included in the genome and transformed to a hard-inheritance or the new trait is non-beneficial because the biotic or abiotic stress is dissipating, then the soft inheritance will fade
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