Epigenetic Gift of Gab: Could Chemical Tags on DNA Influence a Person’s Social Skills?

June 28, 2016 Bailey Kirkpatrick

Do you think of yourself as an extravert or introvert – or perhaps somewhere in between? Although the meaning behind these terms has shifted over time, we typically associate an extroverted person with being talkative and highly sociable, whereas introverts prefer quiet and are typically more reserved. But is there an underlying reason that explains human social behavior? Could these and many other personality traits originate in our genetic information, or do they form as a result of our environment [more…]

Exercise Linked to Epigenetic Benefits that Keep the Brain Healthy

June 21, 2016 Bailey Kirkpatrick

When was the last time you exercised? Was it yesterday, a few weeks ago… or maybe a few months ago? Well, you may want to tack on “epigenetics” to the long list of reasons why you should exercise more often. We all know exercise is beneficial, but the difficulty usually lies in trying to be motivated enough to actually do it. The CDC states that frequent physical activity is one of the most important things for your health. It can [more…]

Air Pollution Found to Alter Important Epigenetic Mark

June 14, 2016 Bailey Kirkpatrick

Air pollution is not only a significant threat to our environment, but also to our health. Ranging from vehicles to industrial facilities, common sources of air pollution are all around us. These pollutants are linked to serious health issues, such as respiratory disease, impaired lung function, asthma, cancer, chronic bronchitis, and increased morbidity. According to the WHO, outdoor air pollution was estimated to cause 3.7 million premature deaths worldwide in 2012. It’s most abundant in urban areas in Southeast Asia [more…]

Poor Socioeconomic Status May Leave Epigenetic Mark on Gene Linked to Depression

June 7, 2016 Bailey Kirkpatrick

Could there be connections between socio-economic status, epigenetics, and one’s likelihood of developing depression? Previous and current research has long revealed a relationship between poverty and depression, and now new research suggests that there could be an underlying epigenetic influence. This new finding may help mediate the association between lower socioeconomic status and the risk of developing the disease. The study, published in Molecular Psychiatry, utilizes epigenetics, brain imaging, and behavioral data of adolescents collected over three years as part [more…]