Porvair Sciences has announced the addition of the novel Chromatrap chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assay range to its portfolio of products for epigenetics. Developed in conjunction with Department of Life Sciences at University of Swansea, UK, Chromatrap uses a solid phase porous polymer functionalized with protein A, allowing the chromatin capture to be more efficient than bead based methods.
Researchers say they have discovered specific chemical alterations in two genes that, when present during pregnancy, reliably predict whether a woman will develop postpartum depression. The epigenetic modifications, which alter the way genes function without changing the underlying DNA sequence, can apparently be detected in the blood of pregnant women during any trimester.
Scientists have long known that control mechanisms known collectively as "epigenetics" play a critical role in human development, but they did not know precisely how alterations in this extra layer of biochemical instructions in DNA contribute to development.
Very little has been known about the epigenetic events that occur prior to the invasive growth of head and neck squamous cell carcinomas and their spread to other parts of the body, or metastasis. Researchers discovered what could be a crucial step toward understanding the process that activates the cancer cells.
Scientists have identified patterns of epigenetic changes involved in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) by studying genetically identical twins who differ in autism traits. The study is the largest of its kind and may shed light on the biological mechanism by which environmental influences regulate the activity of certain genes and in turn contribute to the development of ASD and related behavior traits.
Specific DNA once dismissed as junk plays an important role in brain development and might be involved in several devastating neurological diseases, scientists have found. Their discovery in mice is likely to further fuel a recent scramble by researchers to identify roles for long-neglected bits of DNA within the genomes of mice and humans alike.
New research explains how certain traits can pass down from one generation to the next– at least in plants– without following the accepted rules of genetics.
Studies by U. S. Department of Agriculture-funded research molecular geneticist Robert A. Waterland are helping explain how the foods that soon-to-be-moms eat in the days and weeks around the time of conception—or what's known as periconceptional nutrition—may affect the way genes function in her children, and her children's health.