Dogs Exposed to BPA Give Us Epigenetic Clues About Our Own Wellbeing

Exposure to a widespread environmental chemical could cause changes to chemical tags on DNA, which can impact the expression of genes and potentially increase the risk for disease. Researchers studied one of our closest companions – dogs – and the epigenetic effect of bisphenol-A (BPA) found in canned dog food. Since these animals share our … Continue reading Dogs Exposed to BPA Give Us Epigenetic Clues About Our Own Wellbeing

The Consequences of a Poor Diet Could Epigenetically Persist Despite Improving Eating Habits

A majority of people know that improving your diet will lead to an improvement in your health. But not everyone knows that the consequences of eating poorly can actually persist even after you’ve changed your dietary habits for the better. New research on mice suggests that even following the treatment of atherosclerosis – the build-up … Continue reading The Consequences of a Poor Diet Could Epigenetically Persist Despite Improving Eating Habits

Jumping Enzyme Discovered in Nucleus Influences Epigenetic Regulation

A study led by a team of researchers at the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry at the University of Alberta sheds light on a new, interesting way metabolism is connected to DNA regulation. The discovery may add an important piece to the puzzle in scientists’ quest to understand diseases and their epigenetic basis. One such … Continue reading Jumping Enzyme Discovered in Nucleus Influences Epigenetic Regulation

DNA Methylation Solves Crimes

In an episode of the popular procedural drama Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, entitled ‘Perverted’, the show’s protagonist, Detective Olivia Benson, was accused of murder after her DNA was found to match DNA isolated from blood recovered from the murder weapon. Without alibi, Detective Benson was arrested, her reputation in jeopardy. As her colleagues worked … Continue reading DNA Methylation Solves Crimes

Histone Demethylation Plays a Role in Turning Stem Cells into Blood Vessel Cells

How stem cells become specific cell types is an intricate process, yet understanding the mechanisms that trigger this process may well prove to be beneficial for use in repairing and regenerating tissue.  In a recent study, scientists at the University of Illinois at Chicago investigated the molecular mechanism, histone demethylation, and how it plays an essential role … Continue reading Histone Demethylation Plays a Role in Turning Stem Cells into Blood Vessel Cells

Cancer Genes May Have Been Epigenetically Silenced Over Time

The factors contributing to the development of cancer in an individual are often complex and varied. Sometimes they are more straightforward, like when someone carries a specific gene known to indicate cancer risk; for example, specific mutations of BRCA1 or BRCA2 are linked to breast cancer. But usually, these risk factors are not so directly observable, making cancer … Continue reading Cancer Genes May Have Been Epigenetically Silenced Over Time

It’s not just what you eat that matters: WHEN you eat also plays a role when it comes to liver function

The importance of right timing when it comes to food intake was once again made evident in a recent study published in the journal Cell Reports. In it, researchers from Texas A&M University discovered that the time you eat has profound effects on the metabolic functions and rhythm of biological processes. Eating at the wrong time of the day, for instance, … Continue reading It’s not just what you eat that matters: WHEN you eat also plays a role when it comes to liver function

What You Eat Adjusts Your Gut Microbiota and Epigenetic Marks

We’ve long known that what we eat affects the microbes in our bodies. Right now, hundreds of different species of bacteria are churning in our stomachs, working to protect us as well as survive within us. New research is showing that the bacterial microbiota of the gut could place chemical tags on our DNA and … Continue reading What You Eat Adjusts Your Gut Microbiota and Epigenetic Marks

Can An Infection Alter Your Epigenome?

There are many examples of infectious agents that are capable of modifying the behavior of their host organism. Pathogens typically co-opt their host in ways that create an opportunity to spread into another host. For example, the rabies virus is transmitted through saliva, so the virus transforms its host into an unusually aggressive beast that … Continue reading Can An Infection Alter Your Epigenome?

The Epigenetics Behind the Flu

When the flu hits, it typically hits hard and fast. At first, you might only notice a slight cough and some sniffles and then, before you know it, you’re unable to get out of bed. The fever, sore throat, chills, muscle aches, and overall exhaustion take over your body and you’re done for — at … Continue reading The Epigenetics Behind the Flu