Home pageArticles - biotech and pharmacyMother's Diet Before Pregnancy Can Change Gene Function In...

Mother's Diet Before Pregnancy Can Change Gene Function In Offspring

Date: 11.10.2012 

Medical News Today 21 Sep 2012: It has long been known that nutrition during pregnancy affects the well-being of her child, but a new study suggests that what a woman eats before she becomes pregnant might also play a significant role. Credit: Jana Kupčáková

Published in The FASEB Journal, a study conducted with mice, has found that diet prior to pregnancy chemically alters the mother's DNA and passes these changes along to their offspring. These DNA modifications known as "epigenetic" changes considerably affect the metabolism of necessary fatty acids within the pups. As a result of these findings, diabetes, obesity, cancer, and other immune disorder research could be radically transformed.

Mihai Niculescu, M.D., Ph.D., study author from Nutrition Research Institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, in Chapel Hill, N.C., explains:

"As parents, we have to understand better that our responsibilities to our children are not only of a social, economical, or educational nature, but that our own biological status can contribute to the fate of our children, and this effect can be long-lasting."

An earlier study suggested even as the egg first leaves the ovary and begins to mature, it is subject to nutritional deficiencies in the mother that can profoundly affect its ability to grow. With this discovery and further insight into the topic of the biological relationship between mother and child, parents could potentially use their own biological tools to improve the lives of their offspring...


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