Folia Histochemica Et Cytobiologica / Polish Academy of Sciences, Polish Histochemical and Cytochemical Society
The insulin-like growth factor-2 (Igf2)-H19 locus encodes important paternally imprinted genes that govern normal embryonic development. While Igf-2 encodes IGF2, which is an autocrine/paracrine mitogen,† transcription of H19 gives rise to non-coding mRNA that is a precursor of several microRNAs (miRNAs) that negatively affect cell proliferation.
The transfer and persistence of fetal progenitor cells into the mother throughout pregnancy has sparked considerable interest as a trafficking stem cell and immunological phenomenon. Indeed, the intriguing longevity of semi-allogeneic fetal microchimeric cells (FMC) in parous women raises questions over their potential clinical implications. FMC have been associated with both immune-modulatory roles and participation in maternal tissue repair.
Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are one of widely used nanomaterials in industry and biomedicine. The potential impact of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) was evaluated using Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) as a toxicological animal model. SWCNTs are extremely hydrophobic to form large agglomerates in aqueous solutions. Highly soluble amide-modified SWCNTs (a-SWCNTs) were therefore used in the present study so that the exact impact of SWCNTs could be studied. No significant toxicity was observed in C. elegans due to the amide modification.
Experimental studies demonstrated that maternal exposure to certain environmental and dietary factors during early embryonic development can influence the phenotype of offspring as well as the risk of disease development at the later life. DNA methylation, an epigenetic phenomenon, has been suggested as a mechanism by which maternal nutrients affect the phenotype of their offspring in both honeybee and agouti mouse models.
In the past decade, the growing field of telomere science has opened exciting new avenues for understanding the cellular and molecular substrates of stress and stress-related aging processes over the lifespan. Shorter telomere length is associated with advancing chronological age and also increased disease morbidity and mortality. Emerging studies suggest that stress accelerates the erosion of telomeres from very early in life and possibly even influences the initial (newborn) setting of telomere length.
Melanocytes, the pigmented cells of the skin, and the glial Schwann cells lining peripheral nerves are developmentally derived from an early and transient ectodermal structure of the vertebrate embryo, the neural crest, which is also at the origin of multiple neural and non-neural cell types. Besides melanocytes and neural cells of the peripheral nervous system, the neural crest cells give rise to mesenchymal cell types in the head, which form most of the craniofacial skeleton, dermis, fat tissue and vascular musculo-connective components.
Acquisition and maintenance of cell fate and potential are dependent on the complex interplay of extracellular signaling, gene regulatory networks and epigenetic states. During embryonic development, embryonic stem cells become progressively more restricted along specific lineages, ultimately giving rise to the diversity of cell types in the adult mammalian organism. Recent years have seen major advances in our understanding of the mechanisms that regulate the underlying transcriptional programmes during development.
BACKGROUND: Maternal smoking during pregnancy (MSDP) is associated with early and long-term neurobehavioral deficits; however mechanisms remain unknown. We tested the hypothesis that MSDP programs the hypothalamic pituitary adrenocortical (HPA) axis of the offspring leading to adverse outcomes. In an intensive, prospective study, we investigated associations between MSDP and infant cortisol stress response and explored whether alterations in cortisol response were mediated by epigenetic modulation of the placental glucocorticoid receptor gene (NR3C1).
Much controversy surrounds the idea of transgenerational epigenetics. Recent papers argue that epigenetic marks acquired through experience are passed to offspring, but as in much of the field of epigenetics, there is lack of precision in the definitions and perhaps too much eagerness to translate animal research to humans. Here, we review operational definitions of transgenerational inheritance and the processes of epigenetic programing during early development.
AIM: To investigate the embryotoxicity of dihydroartemisinin (DHA), the main active metabolite of artemisinin, in zebrafish, and explore the corresponding mechanisms. METHODS: The embryos of wild type and TG (flk1:GFP) transgenic zebrafish were exposed to DHA. Developmental phenotypes of the embryos were observed. Development of blood vessels was directly observed in living embryos of TG (flk1:GFP) transgenic zebrafish under fluorescence microscope.