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Moinak, Banerjee (2019) Genetics of epigenome might hold the clue for determining the threshold of environmental impact. Epigenomics, 11 (9). pp. 983-986. ISSN 1750-192X

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To determine the epigenetic basis of any disease one needs to identify the epigenetic landscape of the environment that drives the pathology. The epigenetic landscape of a disease can be determined by evaluating the alteration in DNA methylation, histone modifications and noncoding RNA expression. These molecular parameters of epigenomics have been monitored in response to the environment as a whole, while the role of genetics that govern these epigenomic parameters have often been ignored. We know that schizophrenia can be caused by a variety of environmental risk factors starting at early life complications and adding up with later life stressors. The early life events include prenatal infections, fetal hypoxia, prenatal maternal nutrition, maternal life stressors, birth season and location, while late life events include psychological stress, personality traits and substance abuse. There is no one to one correlation of these environmental risk factors in relation to epigenetic landscape. When schizophrenia arises, this could be due to the influence of many of these early and late life events and the epigenetic landscape might be the signature or combination of some of the risk factors. Therefore, monitoring each environmental factor or their combinations (risk or nonrisk) over a continuous time interval, and then relating them to shifts and balances in epigenetic landscape can be very challenging, as these factors are very dynamic and will also impact the epigenome dynamically [1]. The dynamics of environmental factors is difficult to control but how the host responds to these environmental factors might be relatively simpler as they are governed by the genetic factors that govern the epigenome. Today, we have precise understanding of the molecular indicators of the epigenome but correlating these molecular indicators to a specific environmental risk factor seems to be an enigma. Due to lack of this knowledge on the environmental correlates and its epigenetic indicators one often finds contrasting observations on the patterns of DNA methylation, histone modifications and noncoding RNA expression for any given complex disease like schizophrenia [2]. It is known that DNA sequence variations, epigenetic regulations and environmental cues act stochastically to contribute in the etiopathogenesis of schizophrenia [3]. Therefore, one of the simplest methods of epigenetic stratification would be to identify the genetic correlates of these epigenetic modifiers and modulators and stratify the study population genetically. This important aspect relating the genetic correlates of epigenetic modifiers and modulators has often been ignored when addressing the epigenetic indicators of health and disease.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Human Molecular Genetics
Depositing User: Rgcb Library
Date Deposited: 14 Jan 2020 06:30
Last Modified: 14 Jan 2020 06:30
URI: http://rgcb.sciencecentral.in/id/eprint/921

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