Current Epigenetic News and Events

Current Epigenetic News and Events, Epigenetic News Articles.
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A sleep disorder associated with shift work may affect gene function
Going on holiday can affect shift workers on the level of gene function: a new study indicates that resting during a holiday period restored functions associated with DNA regulation in shift workers suffering from sleep deprivation. (2021-02-22)

Cancer control: Non-DNA changes induce metabolism variations in hepatocellular carcinomas
Mechanisms underlying metabolic variations in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), a fast growing and invasive cancer, remain unclear. Now, researchers from Fudan University, China identified signatures of ''m6A,'' the most abundant ''post-transcriptional RNA modification,'' that segregate HCC into sub-types with distinct metabolic characteristics. They have also developed a novel m6A score that can quantify such modifications and aid risk assessment, prediction of prognosis, and response to treatment in patients with HCC. (2021-02-22)

Turbocharging the killing power of immune cells against cancer
Creating ''super soldiers'' of specific white blood cells to boost an anti-tumour response has been shown in a series of elegant experiments by Princess Margaret researchers. (2021-02-19)

Epigenetic mechanisms allow native Peruvians to thrive at high altitudes
Scientists reveal the epigenetic mechanisms that enable humans to survive at extremely high altitudes in the Andes (2021-02-15)

Unlocking the mystery behind skeletal aging
Researchers from the UCLA School of Dentistry have identified the role a critical enzyme plays in skeletal aging and bone loss, putting them one step closer to understanding the complex biological mechanisms that lead to osteoporosis, the bone disease that afflicts some 200 million people worldwide. Findings, published online in the journal Cell Stem Cell, could hold an important key to developing more effective treatments for osteoporosis and improving the lives of an aging population. (2021-02-15)

Lifestyle changes in pregnant women affected babies' genes
A study led by researchers at Lund University in Sweden showed a connection between lifestyle intervention in pregnant women with obesity and epigenetic alterations in the baby. The study is published in the journal Diabetes. (2021-02-11)

Father's early-life exposure to stress associated with child's brain development
The FinnBrain research of the University of Turku has demonstrated for the first time that the stress the father has experienced in his childhood is connected to the development of the white matter tracts in the child's brain. Whether this connection is transmitted through epigenetic inheritance needs further research. (2021-02-04)

DNA-based technique allows researchers to determine age of living beluga whales in Alaska
Researchers can now determine the age and sex of living beluga whales in Alaska's Cook Inlet thanks to a new DNA-based technique that uses information from small samples of skin tissue. (2021-02-04)

Spanish scientists identify a mechanism through which dendritic cells improve their antiviral and immunotherapy strategies
Researchers at the Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares (CNIC) have discovered that dendritic cells, which initiate specific immune responses, can reprogram their genes to improve their immune response (2021-02-03)

MSK scientists learn how genes and environment conspire in pancreatic cancer development
Both genes and environment are necessary to trigger pancreatic cancer development. A new study from Memorial Sloan Kettering researchers explains why. (2021-02-03)

Oncotarget: Prognostic biomarker for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma
Reduced expression of TBX15 in tumor tissue represents a potential biomarker for predicting poor survival of patients with HCC (2021-01-25)

Strange colon discovery explains racial disparities in colorectal cancer
The colons of African-Americans and people of European descent age differently, new research reveals, helping explain racial disparities in colorectal cancer - the cancer that killed beloved 'Black Panther' star Chadwick Boseman at only 43. (2021-01-21)

UNH researchers discover new inhibitor drug combination for rare form of cancer
Researchers at the University of New Hampshire took the novel approach of targeting specific cell proteins that control DNA information using inhibitors, or drugs, that were effective in reducing the growth of the Waldenström macroglobulinemia cancer cells and when combined with a third drug were even more successful in killing the WM cancer cells which could lead to more treatment options. (2021-01-14)

Biomarkers in fathers' sperm linked to offspring autism
Epigenetic biomarkers in human sperm have been identified that can indicate a propensity to father children with autism spectrum disorder. In the study, researchers identified a set of genomic features, called DNA methylation regions, in sperm samples from men who were known to have autistic children. Then in a set of blind tests, they were able to use the presence of these features to determine whether other men had fathered autistic children with 90% accuracy. (2021-01-11)

Study: New insights on the role of the MLL4 gene in Kabuki syndrome
Research suggests that MLL4 controls the production of neurons that secrete growth hormone-releasing hormone (GHRH) in a part of the brain called the hypothalamus. (2021-01-11)

Scientists seek faster route to treat depression
The Brazilian research group used epigenetic modulators to try to 'erase' the damage done by stress to neuroplasticity. The study showed that acute intervention in epigenetic mechanisms produces antidepressant-like effects more rapidly than conventional drugs. (2021-01-04)

Discovery: How Colorado potato beetles beat pesticides
New research shows that pesticides alter how Colorado potato beetles manage their DNA. These epigenetic changes were passed down two generations suggesting that rapid resistance to pesticides may not require beetles to evolve their genetic code. Instead they may simply use existing genes to tolerate toxins already found in potatoes. The scientists were surprised that these epigenetic changes, triggered by tiny doses of pesticide, were maintained through multiple rounds of sexual reproduction. (2020-12-21)

Quantitative approach on understanding how epigenetic switches control gene expression
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology decipher how to quantitatively assess the effects of specific epigenetic changes on the rate of transcription by developing a mathematical model. For this, they successfully generated reconstituted chromatin bearing histone modifications in vitro. Their study published in Nucleic Acids Research provides an accurate quantitative approach for understanding how site-specific changes to histone proteins impact the accessibility of chromatin and gene expression levels. (2020-12-10)

Memory deficits resulting from epigenetic changes in Alzheimer's disease can be reversed
Memory loss associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD) may be able to be restored by inhibiting certain enzymes involved in abnormal gene transcription, according to a preclinical study by researchers at the University at Buffalo. (2020-12-09)

Deep rooted -- mother's empathy linked to 'epigenetic' changes to the oxytocin gene
Parenting behavior is deeply linked to the ability to empathize with one's children. Thus, to better understand why certain parents react to certain situations in a certain way, it is crucial to gain insight into how empathy is shaped. Scientists from the University of Fukui in Japan have now shed light on the interconnectedness among the oxytocin gene, brain structure, and maternal empathy. (2020-12-07)

Lung tissue from COVID-19 patients and others reveals promising target to treat lung fibrosis
An analysis of lung tissues from patients with different types of pulmonary fibrosis - including cases triggered by COVID-19 - has revealed a promising molecular target to ameliorate the chronic and irreversible disease. Experiments in mouse models of lung fibrosis showed that administering blockers of (2020-12-04)

New activity found for CHD7, a protein factor vital in embryonic development
Research has yielded fundamental insights into the causes of severe birth defects known as CHARGE syndrome cases. These congenital birth defects include severe and life-threatening heart malformations. Researchers successfully inactivated the gene for CHD7 in the neural crest cells of mouse embryos, and then rigorously probed how this change in developing cardiac neural crest cells caused severe defects in the outflow tract and great arteries, leading to perinatal lethality. (2020-12-02)

Chemical memory in plants affects chances of offspring survival
Researchers at the University of Warwick have uncovered the mechanism that allows plants to pass on their 'memories' to offspring, which results in growth and developmental defects. (2020-12-01)

Mother's touch lingers in her child's genes
Mothers leave their mark on their children in many ways - and Melbourne researchers have discovered a protein called SMCHD1 is involved in this 'imprinting' process. SMCHD1 switches certain genes off, altering how a cell behaves. The new research has revealed that when an egg cell (or oocyte) is fertilised by a sperm, the egg cell's SMCHD1 lingers within the developing embryo, switching off at least 10 different genes and impacting the embryo's development - which could potentially have a lifelong impact on the offspring. (2020-11-23)

Research on environmental history: 330-year-old poplar tree tells of its life
Similar to genetic mutations, epigenetic changes, i.e. gene modifications that do not occur on the primary DNA sequence, sometimes arise accidentally in plants and can be transmitted across generations. Using trees as a model, researchers have now shown for the first time that these so-called epimutations accumulate continuously throughout plant development, and that they can be employed as a molecular clock to estimate the age of a tree. (2020-11-18)

Single-cell technique could provide 'egg health' indicators
Using the power of single-cell analysis, researchers at the Babraham Institute have assessed the effects of age on egg cells (oocytes) in mice, particularly looking to identify genomic and epigenetic factors that relate to reduced developmental competence. The knowledge uncovered by this research provides new insights into the mechanisms underlying egg quality and is relevant to the development of techniques to assess the quality of human egg cells, an area of growing importance as the use of fertility treatments increases. (2020-11-18)

Solving a mystery: How the TB bacterium develops rapid resistance to antibiotics
These slow growing bacteria have long puzzled TB researchers with their fairly rapid resistance to antibiotics. Researchers may have been barking up the wrong tree in exploring genetics, because the answer seems to lie in the epigenetic domain. (2020-11-18)

New prediction algorithm identifies previously undetected cancer driver genes
A new study, led by researchers from the University of California, Irvine, has deepened the understanding of epigenetic mechanisms in tumorigenesis and revealed a previously undetected repertoire of cancer driver genes. The study was published this week in Science Advances. (2020-11-12)

Sugar work: U-M study finds sugar remodels molecular memory in fruit flies
A high-sugar diet reprograms the taste cells in fruit flies, dulling their sensitivity to sugar and leaving a ''molecular memory'' on their tongues, according to a University of Michigan study. (2020-11-11)

In flies, consuming high-sugar diet reduces sensitivity to sweetness
In fruit flies fed a high-sugar diet for one week, a complex that regulates taste-related sensory neurons reprogrammed the neurons to make the flies less sensitive to sweet taste. Half of these changes were not reversed even after the flies returned to a control diet, the study shows, suggesting flies' perception of sweet taste was permanently altered. Anoumid Vaziri and (2020-11-11)

Chronic stress causes genetic changes in chickens
How can stress in animals be measured? Scientists from Uppsala University and elsewhere have now found that what are known as epigenetic biomarkers could be used to detect long-term exposure to stress in commercially raised chickens. This may, in time, lead to improved conditions in animal rearing. The study has been published in the journal Frontiers in Genetics. (2020-11-10)

Oncotarget: IGF2 expression in breast cancer tumors and in breast cancer cells
The Oncotarget authors propose that methylation of DVDMR represents a novel epigenetic biomarker that determines the levels of IGF2 protein expression in breast cancer. (2020-11-10)

Diet and lifestyle during pregnancy linked to modifications in infants' DNA
A new study has shown pregnant women with obesity could reduce the health risks for their infants through improved diet and more physical activity. (2020-11-06)

Yeast study yields insights into longstanding evolution debate
In a study published Oct. 27 in the journal Cell Reports, Yale scientists show how epigenetic mechanisms contribute in real time to the evolution of a gene network in yeast. Specifically, through multiple generations yeast cells were found to pass on changes in gene activity induced by researchers. (2020-10-27)

Oncotarget: KDM5A and PHF2 positively control expression of pro-metastatic genes
The cover for Issue 43 of Oncotarget features Figure 6, ''(A) Following the experimental protocol of Franzetti et al. [11] A673-shA1c cells ?/+ Dox (EWS/Fli1high/EWS/Fli1low) were injected into the tail vein, and metastases were allowed to form in the absence of further Dox treatment (to allow recovery of cell growth in EWS/Fli1low cells),'' (2020-10-27)

Study finds PTSD interacts with klotho gene, may cause premature aging in the brain
Genetics and the environment (including psychiatric stress) may contribute to the pace of cellular aging, causing some individuals to have a biological age that exceeds their chronological age. (2020-10-26)

Researchers uncover crucial gene for growth of Ewing sarcoma
Researchers have discovered a gene that is critical for the development of Ewing sarcoma, a rare type of developmental cancer that presents in bones and soft tissues. Exploring the pharmacological inhibition of RING1B as a clinical therapy to treat Ewing sarcoma could open the door for new treatments for the rare disease. (2020-10-23)

Grafting with epigenetically-modified rootstock yields surprise
Novel grafted plants -- consisting of rootstock epigenetically modified to ''believe'' it has been under stress -- joined to an unmodified scion, or above-ground shoot, give rise to progeny that are more vigorous, productive and resilient than the parental plants. (2020-10-22)

Antiretroviral therapy can't completely stop accelerated cell aging seen in HIV
Untreated HIV infection is linked with epigenetic changes that suggest rapid aging. A new study by UCLA researchers shows that antiretroviral therapy given over two years was unable to completely restore age-appropriate epigenetic patterns, leaving patients more susceptible to aging-related illnesses. (2020-10-22)

Genome archeologists discover path to activate immune response against cancer
Ancient embedded elements in our DNA from generations past can activate a powerful immune response to kill cancer cells like an infection. (2020-10-21)

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