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Socioeconomics, Obesity, and Early-Life Nutrition on the Role of DNA Methylation in Biological Embedding

  • Christiana A. DemetriouEmail author
  • Karin van Veldhoven
  • Caroline Relton
  • Silvia Stringhini
  • Kyriacos Kyriacou
  • Paolo Vineis
Reference work entry

Abstract

Early-life socioeconomic conditions, childhood obesity, and early-life nutrition are factors that have been associated with chronic disease in adult life.

The synthesis of current research relating to the biological embodiment of early-life exposures through DNA methylation provides some support to the involvement of DNA methylation in biological embedding and provides evidence for a mechanism through which early-life exposures can affect disease risk later in life.

More specifically, several studies on early-life socioeconomic conditions, childhood overweight/obesity, and early-life nutrition show DNA methylation effects that can, in some cases, persist for years after the exposure. The results of these studies are reviewed here.

This review highlights the plethora of proxies used for these exposures; the small differences observed in methylation, questioning their biological significance; and the lack of clarity regarding the direction and/or the size of some of the effects. In addition, and perhaps most importantly, publication bias cannot be ruled out, and the lack of replication of these results, especially given the lack of overlap between target regions, requires that these results are interpreted cautiously.

Keywords

Biological embedding Thrifty phenotype hypothesis Developmental plasticity DNA methylation Epigenetics Exposome Early-life nutrition Early-life socioeconomic status Childhood obesity Childhood overweight Chronic disease 

List of Abbreviations

ABCA1

ATP-binding cassette, subfamily A (ABC1), member 1

ADIPOQ

Adiponectin, C1Q, and collagen domain containing

BOLA3

BolA family member 3

CASP10

Caspase 10

CCL28

Chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 28

CDK1C

Cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1C

CpG

5′ – C – phosphate – G3′, cytosine and guanine separated by only one phosphate

DHA

Docosahexaenoic acid

DLK1

Delta-like 1 homolog

DMRs

Differentially methylated regions

eNOS

Nitric oxide synthase 3 (NOS3) or constitutive NOS (cNOS)

EPHA

Erythropoietin-producing hepatoma receptor

FAIM2

Fas apoptotic inhibitory molecule 2

FGF12

Fibroblast growth factor 12

FKBP5

FK506-binding protein 5

FLJ20433

FLJ20433 gene

GNASAS

GNAS antisense RNA (nonprotein coding)

GR

Glucocorticoid receptor

H19

H19 gene for a long noncoding RNA

HIF3A

Hypoxia-inducible factor 3A

HLA

Human leukocyte antigen

HSD11B2 or HSD2

Hydroxysteroid (11-beta) dehydrogenase 2

IGF1

Insulin-insulin-like growth factor 1

IGF2

Insulin-like growth factor 2 (somatomedin A)

IL10

Interleukin 10

IL17F

Interleukin 17F

INS-IGF

Insulin-insulin-like growth factor 2 read-through

iPS

Induced pluripotent stem cells

LEP

Leptin

LINE-1

Long interspersed nuclear elements 1

LUMA

Luminometric methylation assay

MBL2

Mannose-binding lectin 2

MEG3

Maternally expressed 3 (nonprotein coding)

NID1

Nidogen 1

NNAT1

Natterin-1

NR3C1

Nuclear receptor subfamily 3 group C member 1

PAX8

Paired box gene 8

PEG10

Paternally expressed 10

PLAGL1 or ZAC1

Pleomorphic adenoma gene-like 1

POMC

Pro-opiomelanocortin gene

PRR5L

Proline rich 5 like

RBC

Red blood cells

RXRA

Retinoid X receptor alpha

Sat2

Satellite 2 tandemly repeating, noncoding DNA

SES

Socioeconomic status

SLC6A4

Solute carrier family 6 member 4

SLITRK1

SLIT- and NTRK-like family member 1

SNRPN

Small nuclear ribonucleoprotein polypeptide N

SGCE

Sarcoglycan epsilon

TACSTD2

Tumor-associated calcium signal transducer 2

TGFBI

Transforming growth factor beta induced

TIMP3

TIMP metallopeptidase inhibitor 3

TLE1

Transducin-like enhancer of split 1 gene

TLR2

Toll-like receptor 2

TLSP

Thymic stromal lymphopoietin

WDR5

WD repeat domain 5

ZFYVE28

Zinc finger FYVE-type containing 28

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christiana A. Demetriou
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Karin van Veldhoven
    • 3
  • Caroline Relton
    • 4
    • 5
  • Silvia Stringhini
    • 6
  • Kyriacos Kyriacou
    • 7
  • Paolo Vineis
    • 3
  1. 1.Neurology Clinic DThe Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics, Ayios DhometiosNicosiaCyprus
  2. 2.The Cyprus School of Molecular MedicineThe Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics, Ayios DhometiosNicosiaCyprus
  3. 3.Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public HealthImperial College LondonLondonUK
  4. 4.MRC Integrative Epidemiology Unit, School of Social and Community MedicineUniversity of BristolBristolUK
  5. 5.Institute of Genetic MedicineNewcastle UniversityNewcastle upon TyneUK
  6. 6.Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine (IUMSP)Lausanne University HospitalLausanneSwitzerland
  7. 7.Department of Electron Microscopy/Molecular PathologyThe Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics, The Cyprus School of Molecular Medicine, The Cyprus School of MolecularNicosiaCyprus

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