Current Methylation News and Events

Current Methylation News and Events, Methylation 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)

New research on mitochondrial function can play significant part in serious disease
Disorders of the cells' energy supply can cause a number of serious diseases, but also seem to be connected to ageing. More research is needed on mitochondrial function to find future treatments. A new study involving researchers at Karolinska Institutet shows how an important molecule inside the mitochondria affects their function in mice and fruit flies. The study, which is published in Science Advances, adds valuable knowledge on formerly relatively unexplored protein modifications. (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)

New discovery could pave the way for improved treatments for diabetes
Monash University researchers have uncovered the barrier to β-cell (beta cell) regeneration that could pave the way for improved treatments for diabetes and diseases that involve organ and tissue damage. (2021-02-12)

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)

Hypoxia, a feature inside solid cancer tumors, reprograms methylation of ribosomal RNAs
Hypoxia -- where a tissue is deprived of an adequate supply of oxygen -- is a feature inside solid cancer tumors that renders them highly invasive and resistant to treatment. Researchers now report that chronic hypoxia, surprisingly, upregulates RNA polymerase I activity and alters the methylation patterns on ribosomal RNAs. These altered epigenetic marks on the ribosomal RNAs appear to create a pool of specialized ribosomes that can differentially regulate translation of messenger RNA. (2021-02-03)

Potential drug target found for treating rare genetic disorder in children
Scientists have identified a potential new treatment approach for Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS), a progressive genetic disorder that causes rapid and premature aging in children. (2021-02-02)

New study points to better diagnostics for cancer
A new University of California, Irvine-led study finds a new method for identifying biomarkers may aid in early cancer diagnosis. The study focused on lung cancer, however the Cell Heterogeneity-Adjusted cLonal Methylation (CHALM) method has been tested on aging and Alzheimer's diseases as well and is expected to be effective for studying other diseases. (2021-01-27)

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)

New, simplified genetic test effectively screens for hereditary cancers
Researchers have developed a new integrated genetic/epigenetic DNA-sequencing protocol known as MultiMMR that can identify the presence and cause of mismatch repair (MMR) deficiency in a single test from a small sample of DNA in colon, endometrial, and other cancers. This alternative to complex, multi-step testing workflows can also determine causes of MMR deficiency often missed by current clinical tests. Their results are presented in The Journal of Molecular Diagnostics, published by Elsevier. (2021-01-21)

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)

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 of aging mechanism for hematopoietic stem cells
By transferring mouse aged hematopoietic stem cells (aged HSCs) to the environment of young mice (bone marrow niche), it was demonstrated that the pattern of stem cell gene expression was rejuvenated to that of young hematopoietic stem cells. (2020-12-24)

Changing the perspective on the 'Cinderella of the cytoskeleton'
SETD2, known for its involvement on gene expression, also can affect functions controlled by the cytoskeleton, such as movement, metastasis and migration, which are very important for cancer cells. (2020-12-23)

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)

Moffitt researchers discover potential new drug target to treat cutaneous T cell lymphoma
In order to improve their understanding of how CTCL develops in hopes of developing new therapies, a team of Moffitt scientists conducted a series of studies. In an article published in The Journal of Clinical Investigation, they demonstrate that decreased expression of the protein SATB1 contributes to CTCL development and that drugs that cause SATB1 to become re-expressed may be potential treatment options for this disease. (2020-12-21)

Deep Longevity publishes an epigenetic aging clock of unprecedented accuracy
Longevity startup ''Deep Longevity'' has released a new high-accuracy methylation aging clock -- DeepMAge. It is a neural network that was trained and verified in a collection of >6,000 blood samples from 32 studies. The median absolute error of this aging clock is superior to other methylation clocks: 2.77 years in healthy people. The clock shows association with multiple age-related conditions, including cancer, dementia, and obesity. The authors aim to further develop DeepMAge into a generative model to simulate subcellular aging processes. (2020-12-08)

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)

Scientists reverse age-related vision loss, eye damage from glaucoma in mice
Researchers at Harvard Medical School have successfully reversed age-related vision loss in animals as well as eye damage stemming from with a condition mimicking human glaucoma, a leading cause of blindness around the world. (2020-12-02)

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)

Defined blockade
The addition and removal of methyl groups on DNA plays an important role in gene regulation. In order to study these mechanisms more precisely, a German team has developed a new method by which specific methylation sites can be blocked and then unblocked at a precise time through irradiation with light (photocaging). As reported in the journal Angewandte Chemie, the required regent is produced enzymatically, in situ. (2020-11-24)

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)

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)

Nut consumption causes changes in sperm DNA function
Researchers have evaluated for the first time the effect of a short/middle-term consumption of a mixture of tree nuts (almonds, hazelnuts and walnuts) on sperm DNA methylation patterns in healthy individuals reporting eating a Western-style diet. They have observed that the methylation of 36 genomic regions was significantly different between baseline and the end of the trial only in the group that consumed nuts, and 97.2% of the regions displayed hypermethylation. (2020-11-09)

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)

A new RNA catalyst from the lab
On the track of evolution: a catalytically active RNA molecule that specifically attaches methyl groups to other RNAs - a research group from the University of Würzburg reports on this new discovery in Nature. (2020-10-28)

Cell-Free DNA provides a dynamic window into health
A new study presented at the ASHG 2020 Virtual Meeting shows how cfDNA testing can be used to provide insight into a patient's health. (2020-10-26)

Photon IMRT treatment group displays no significant survival difference between arms
A preliminary analysis of photon therapy treatment group 1 from the phase II NRG Oncology clinical trial NRG-BN001 indicates that there is no statistically significant overall survival (OS) or toxicity differences between dose-intensification radiation therapy (DI-RT) using intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) and standard-dose radiation therapy (SD-RT) with temozolomide treatments for patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma (GBM). (2020-10-26)

Cord blood DNA can hold clues for early ASD diagnosis and intervention
Specific regions in cord blood DNA can help identify kids who might develop autism, according to a UC Davis MIND Institute study. The findings from the study may hold clues for early autism diagnosis and intervention. (2020-10-22)

Highly effective tumor detection strategy for common childhood brain tumors
A team of scientists at Texas A&M University, Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children's Hospital have developed a way to more accurately both detect and monitor a common type of pediatric brain cancer, setting the stage for giving clinicians a real-time view into how the cancer responds to treatment. (2020-10-21)

Pancreatic cancer: Subtypes with different aggressiveness discovered
To date, no targeted personalized therapies for pancreatic cancer exist. Heidelberg Scientists have now succeeded for the first time in defining two differently aggressive molecular subtypes of pancreatic carcinoma. This provides new insights into the origin of the tumors. In the more aggressive group of tumors, a phenomenon known as 'viral mimicry' leads to a cancer-promoting inflammatory reaction. This could possibly be the basis for the development of a targeted, subtype-oriented therapy. (2020-10-15)

Anti-convulsant drug can modify DNA conformation and interact with chromosome proteins
Brazilian research group shows that valproic acid (VPA), used to treat epilepsy since the 1960s, modulates gene expression in tumor gene models and acts on DNA conformation and the histones in chromatin. (2020-09-28)

Epigenetics linked to genetic differences between domesticated and wild chickens
Some of the genetic differences that have arisen between domesticated chickens and their wild ancestors, the red junglefowl, are linked to epigenetic changes, according to a new study published in Nature Ecology & Evolution. Scientists at Linköping University, Sweden, have discovered a small number of ''hotspots'' in the DNA that control epigenetic changes at hundreds of other locations throughout the genome. (2020-09-21)

Your cells look young for their age, compared to a chimp's
Many humans live to see their 80s, some even reach 100. But chimpanzees rarely make it past 50, despite sharing 99% of our genetic code. While modern medicine has added years to human lifespans, a study points to a more ancient explanation why humans are the long-lived primate. Part of the secret to human longevity may lie in chemical changes to our DNA that slowed the rate of aging after human ancestors diverged from chimps. (2020-09-20)

Metformin for type 2 diabetes patients or not? Researchers now have the answer
Metformin is the first-line drug that can lower blood sugar levels in type 2 diabetes patients. One third of patients do not respond to metformin treatment and 5 per cent experience serious side effects, which is the reason many choose to stop medicating. Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have now identified biomarkers that can show in advance how the patient will respond to metformin treatment via a simple blood test. (2020-09-17)

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