Breaking News
February 20, 2019 - Self-reported sleep duration is a useful tool to measure sleep in children, study suggests
February 20, 2019 - T-cells play key role in how the body fights follicular lymphoma
February 20, 2019 - Study shows how 3D organization of genetic material helps perpetuate the species
February 20, 2019 - Researchers engineer stem cell with ‘suicide genes’ to induce cell death in all but beta cells
February 20, 2019 - Health Tip: Get Your Child to School on Time
February 20, 2019 - Shortcut strategy for screening compounds with clinical potentials for drug development
February 20, 2019 - Common acid reflux drugs tied to elevated risk for kidney disease
February 20, 2019 - Microbiome could be culprit when good drugs do harm
February 20, 2019 - Prenatal exposure to forest fires causes stunted growth in children
February 20, 2019 - Gene therapy restores hearing in mice with congenital genetic deafness
February 20, 2019 - First molecular test predicts treatment response for kidney cancer
February 20, 2019 - New method for improved visualization of single-cell RNA- sequencing data
February 20, 2019 - Researchers capture altered brain activity patterns of Parkinson’s in mice
February 20, 2019 - A possible blood test for detecting Alzheimer’s disease before symptoms show
February 20, 2019 - Primary care physicians associated with longevity, new research finds
February 19, 2019 - New study identifies many key lessons to establish sanctioned safe consumption sites
February 19, 2019 - Single CRISPR treatment can safely and stably correct genetic disease
February 19, 2019 - Multinational initiative to study familial primary distal renal tubular acidosis
February 19, 2019 - Breakthrough study highlights the promise of cell therapies for muscular dystrophy
February 19, 2019 - Subsymptom Threshold Exercise Speeds Concussion Recovery
February 19, 2019 - Midline venous catheters – infants: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia
February 19, 2019 - Searching for side effects
February 19, 2019 - Humanity is all right, probably, although human extinction remains quite possible, researcher says
February 19, 2019 - Having Anesthesia Once as a Baby Does Not Cause Learning Disabilities, New Research Shows
February 19, 2019 - Anti-cancer immunotherapy could be used to fight HIV
February 19, 2019 - Customized Micropatterning for Improved Physiological Relevance
February 19, 2019 - Unique gene therapy approach paves new way to tackle rare, inherited diseases
February 19, 2019 - Activating gene that helps excite neurons reverses depression in male mice
February 19, 2019 - Science Puzzling Out Differences in Gut Bacteria Around the World
February 19, 2019 - Cells that destroy the intestine
February 19, 2019 - On recovery, vulnerability and ritual: An exhibit in white
February 19, 2019 - Scientific Duo Gets Back To Basics To Make Childbirth Safer
February 19, 2019 - COPD patients need more support when understanding new chest symptoms
February 19, 2019 - Using light-based method for production of pharmaceutical molecules
February 19, 2019 - Scientists find link between inflammation and cancer
February 19, 2019 - The High Cost Of Sex: Insurers Often Don’t Pay For Drugs To Treat Problems
February 19, 2019 - Hearing impairment associated with accelerated cognitive decline with age
February 19, 2019 - Researchers identify multiple genetic variants associated with body fat distribution
February 19, 2019 - Influenza and common cold are completely different diseases, study shows
February 19, 2019 - Scientists untangle how microbes manufacture key antibiotic compound
February 19, 2019 - Greater primary care physician supply associated with longer life spans
February 19, 2019 - HIV-1 protein suppresses immune response more broadly than thought
February 19, 2019 - Brain imaging indicates potential success of drug therapy in depressive patients
February 19, 2019 - For 2020 Dem Hopefuls, ‘Medicare-For-All’ Is A Defining Issue, However They Define It
February 19, 2019 - Specialized lung cells appear in the developing fetus much earlier than previously thought
February 19, 2019 - KU professor discusses promise of brain-computer interface to aid, restore communication
February 19, 2019 - Highly effective solution for detecting onset of aggregation in nanoparticles
February 19, 2019 - Early marker of cardiac damage triggered by cancer treatment identified
February 19, 2019 - Antidepressant drug could save people from deadly sepsis, research suggests
February 19, 2019 - CRISPR technology creates pluripotent stem cells that are ‘invisible’ to the immune system
February 19, 2019 - New study establishes how stress favors breast cancer growth and spread
February 19, 2019 - Midlife Systemic Inflammation Linked to Later Cognitive Decline
February 19, 2019 - Therapy derived from parasitic worms downregulates proinflammatory pathways
February 19, 2019 - Antimicrobial reusable coffee cups are less likely to become contaminated with bacteria, study shows
February 19, 2019 - Harnessing the evolutionary games played by cancer cells to advance therapies
February 19, 2019 - AHA News: Heart Transplant Survivor Gets Wedding Proposal at Finish Line
February 19, 2019 - HIV hidden in patients’ cells can now be accurately measured
February 19, 2019 - Research finds reasons for sudden cardiac death in patients with stable ischemic disease
February 19, 2019 - New protocol could help physicians to rule out bacterial infections in infants
February 19, 2019 - Women experiencing miscarriage should be offered treatment choices
February 19, 2019 - New protocol can help identify febrile infants at low risk for serious bacterial infections
February 19, 2019 - Innovative way to block HIV runs into a roadblock
February 19, 2019 - Springer Nature with BCRF conduct pilot project to make their research datasets more accessible
February 19, 2019 - Study finds neuromelanin-sensitive MRI as potential biomarker for psychosis
February 19, 2019 - Improvements in cardiovascular care for elderly save billions in health care costs
February 19, 2019 - Chilean food regulations are changing food perceptions and purchasing habits, study suggests
February 19, 2019 - Index endoscopy results are crucial for assessment of Barrett’s patients
February 18, 2019 - Breast cancer screening age should be lowered to 35
February 18, 2019 - Brain synchronization depends on the language of communication
February 18, 2019 - Drug Company Payments Over Time May Influence Rx Practices
February 18, 2019 - Despite socioeconomic gains, black-white ‘health gap’ remains
February 18, 2019 - Researchers report progress in the treatment of aggressive brain tumors
February 18, 2019 - Scientists discover trigger that turns strep infections into devastating disease
February 18, 2019 - Scanning children’s teeth may predict future mental health issues
February 18, 2019 - Health Highlights: Feb. 14, 2019
February 18, 2019 - New knowledge could help predict and prevent depression
February 18, 2019 - More primary care physicians leads to longer life spans | News Center
February 18, 2019 - Study examines link between supply of primary care physicians and life expectancy
February 18, 2019 - New study assesses screen time in young children
February 18, 2019 - Patented IU discovery to treat ARDS has been optioned to Theratome Bio
Epigenetic link found between prenatal exposure to maternal smoking and offspring’s cardio-metabolic health

Epigenetic link found between prenatal exposure to maternal smoking and offspring’s cardio-metabolic health

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print

According to new research, epigenetic changes found in the offspring exposed to maternal smoking during pregnancy or in current smokers are linked to smoking-related diseases in adulthood.

The study identified lower DNA methylation at GFI1, a compelling smoking-related locus that associates with increased risk for adult BMI, blood lipids and blood pressure levels. This study arose from a large international collaboration between 17 research academic organizations, organized under the Global MethQTL and DynaHEALTH consortia, linking data from Europe, the US, and Australia. This collaborative effort from a long-lasting cooperation between the University of Oulu (Finland) and Imperial College London (United Kingdom) sheds light on our understanding of the multidimensional components of life-long health and development of chronic diseases. The new findings are published in the journal EBioMedicine, published by The Lancet.

Cigarette smoking accounts for nearly 6 million deaths annually and even former smokers are at long-term risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. Similarly, exposure to maternal smoking during pregnancy has undue immediate consequences (low birth weight, preterm birth etc.) as well as predisposing the child to risk for cardio-metabolic risk factors in later life. However, despite the known risk, worldwide 53% of women who smoke daily continue to smoke during pregnancy, with the highest prevalence in the European region over the last years.

The mechanisms underlying these long-term effects need better understanding, as they are very likely due to direct biological effects combined with inherited behavioral and psychosocial factors. Previous research has identified many smoking-related epigenetic markers. Epigenetic processes such as DNA methylation essentially regulate gene expression without altering the gene’s DNA structure. Changes in gene expression have implications on the development of diseases. This represents the largest study to discover the link between smoking related epigenetic markers and cardio-metabolic risk factors in adults.

For this study, researchers conducted meta-analysis on 22 studies, including methylation data on 18,212 adults aged from 16 to 81 years. Among these, 17% were found to be current smokers. Data since pregnancy was available on 4,230 offspring, of which 18% were exposed to maternal smoking during pregnancy. Lower DNA methylation at GFI1 was consistently observed among participants exposed to smoking, and, this molecular biomarker associated with cardio-metabolic risk factors attributed to smoking, including changes in body mass index, blood pressure levels and hypertriglyceridemia.

The findings highlight important clinical implications. Epigenetic changes associate with cardio-metabolic risk in later life even among non-smokers exposed to pre-natal maternal smoking. “Such epigenetic loci might serve as objective biomarkers of past environmental exposures that could be used for preventive health measures. This discovery provides a strong foundation for further work to unravel emerging smoking epigenetic markers with downstream detrimental health outcomes,” says lead author Priyanka Parmar from the University of Oulu.

Professor Marjo-Riitta Järvelin, group leader, points out “Our study shows compelling evidence that changes in epigenetic markers may persist over the life course of an individual. These findings are important for health policy makers to further draw attention towards increasing awareness on smoking cessation programmes and for better prevention strategies in maternity clinics and health centers.”

Dr. Sylvain Sebert, senior author from the University of Oulu highlights “This study also constitutes a proof-of-concept of the developmental and life-course complexity of health. Only 8 (out of 6000!) DNA methylation markers associated with prenatal exposure to maternal smoking were selected for this research. These represent only the tip of the iceberg where much research is needed to understand the molecular interactions, the causal pathways and the modifiable factors”.

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles