In one of the sessions today there was a fantastic talk by Dr Dolinoy. Here are my notes with some explainations where needed:
Epigenetics (this is where you affect gene expression by means other than damaging DNA, messing with transcription or translation of DNA/RNA, for instance).
If you give murine dams (mice mothers) genestein (a phytoestrogen that is part of soy) that would be equivalent to the higher end of what asians get, it effects the color of the coat after birth (a black female is crossed with a blond male). Basically this means that the genestein is affecting how the genes express themselves. In this case it is through methylation changes. Hmmm…what other genes are being changed.
Discussed BPA shortly. Noted that 95% of academic and gov’t studies find harm at low levels. 0% of industry studies do. Elicits chuckles from half the audience. The other half are scowly. He he he.
Did the same thing as genestein with Bisphenol A (BPA) at 50 mg/kg in food. Same result. Uh oh. Again, Hmmm…what other genes are being changed. The effects are from very early in gestation as the effects are found in all germ lines (types of cells that give rise to different organs).
Did same thing again but added BPA to methyl donors (folic acid and such). This has a control effect (brings the treated group back closer to controls). So, folic acid should keep some of the adverse methylation effects from occuring.
Coming up with list of genes that possibly could be affected by this mechanism: imprintome.
Seriously, can we stop using the suffix -ome? It’s so 2000 and it’s friggin’ annoying. I have added imprintome to my annoyome.
Planning on doing low doses to see if effects persist.
AT thinks: So if Folic Acid rescues BPA-induced methylation, does that mean that BPA could have the same effect as folic acid deficiencies? The implication here is that BPA exposure could, at some level, counter act folic acid and lead to things like Spinal Bifida, which is caused by folic acid deficits. Seriously, if anyone is fishing around for a disseration project for grad school, I just offered one up. That would be a pretty exciting avenue of research.
Here are my notes on the next presetation, “The use of genetic variation to predict risk and efficacy during drug development”:
This guy is boring and slow.
I’m losing my will to live.
End of notes.