About Careers MedBlog Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Children Conceived During Dutch Famine Have Altered Regulation of Growth and Development Genes

by Dr. Trupti Shirole on December 4, 2014 at 7:04 PM
Font : A-A+

Children Conceived During Dutch Famine Have Altered Regulation of Growth and Development Genes

According to researchers at the Leiden University Medical Center, Harvard University, and Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, individuals conceived in the severe Dutch Famine, also called the Hunger Winter, were delivered with a normal birth weight but extensive research on the DNA of these children shows that the regulatory systems of their growth genes were altered, which may also explain why they appear to be at higher risk for metabolic disease in later life.

During the winter of 1944 -1945 the Western part of Netherlands was struck by a severe 6-month famine, during which rations provided were as low as a quarter of the daily energy requirements. Leiden University principal investigator Dr. Bas Heijmans said, "The different setting of the growth genes may have helped the Hunger Winter children to withstand the Famine conditions as compared with their unexposed siblings, but these changes may likewise be unfavorable for their metabolism as adults."

Advertisement

The research team compared the DNA of these children, now aged 60, at 1.2 million CpG methylation sites comparing them with same-sex siblings not exposed to famine. They noticed that the groups of genes involved in growth and development showed a different gene activity setting in these famine struck children as compared with their siblings with a similar genetic and familial background. The potential for a gene to become active is mainly determined in the crucial weeks post fertilization.

L.H. Lumey, MD, associate professor of Epidemiology at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health and senior author who collected the analyzed blood samples said, "Looking at the human genome we see systematic changes in gene regulation during early human development in response to the environment. The epigenetic revolution has given us the tools to investigate these changes and look at the impact for later life."

áThe study is published in the journal Nature Communications.



Source: Medindia
Advertisement

Advertisement
Advertisement

Recommended Reading

Latest Environmental Health

New Device Helps Measure Air Pollution
Air pollution is a major global threat. Scientists have developed a new device to measure the air quality.
Do Dry Cleaning Chemicals Trigger Parkinson's Disease?
Trichloroethylene (TCE), a common dry cleaning chemical is more likely to increase Parkinson's disease risk.
How to Prevent Powerful Epidemics in Turkey's Earthquake Zone?
Adopting strict measures against flu, COVID-19, plague, rabies and respiratory tract infections can help eliminate the threats of epidemics in Turkey's earthquake zone.
Tiny Plastic Particles in Mom's Food can Reach the Unborn Child: Here's How
Watch out: Tiny environmental plastic particles in mother's food can reach the growing fetus in the womb.
Mosquitoes Bite Humans with Tasty Blood: Here's How
Do mosquitoes prefer tasty blood? Yes, attractive odors in human skin could be the reason why mosquitoes bite some people more than others.
View All
This site uses cookies to deliver our services.By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use  Ok, Got it. Close
×

Children Conceived During Dutch Famine Have Altered Regulation of Growth and Development Genes Personalised Printable Document (PDF)

Please complete this form and we'll send you a personalised information that is requested

You may use this for your own reference or forward it to your friends.

Please use the information prudently. If you are not a medical doctor please remember to consult your healthcare provider as this information is not a substitute for professional advice.

Name *

Email Address *

Country *

Areas of Interests