Epigenetic disturbances caused by bisphenol-A associated with psychiatric disorders

BDNF DNA methylation in the blood may represent a novel clinical epigenetic biomarker for the early detection of psychopathology

psychiatric-disorders
This study provides evidence in support of the role of epigenetic mechanisms in the neurodevelopmental toxicity of BPA and reveals BDNF as a target gene of this environmental toxicant. Image @Robin_Mesnage.

Abstract

Researchers previous study showed that environmentally relevant doses of BPA given to female mice during pregnancy induce lasting epigenetic disruption in the prefrontal cortex and hypothalamus of the offspring and that these changes are sex-specific.

Early-life adversity increases the risk for psychopathology in later life. The underlying mechanism(s) is unknown, but epigenetic variation represents a plausible candidate. Early-life exposures can disrupt epigenetic programming in the brain, with lasting consequences for gene expression and behavior. This evidence is primarily derived from animal studies, with limited study in humans due to inaccessibility of the target brain tissue. In humans, although there is evidence for DNA methylation changes in the peripheral blood of psychiatric patients, a fundamental question remains as to whether epigenetic markers in the blood can predict epigenetic changes occurring in the brain.

DNA methylation of BDNF as a biomarker of early-life adversity, PNAS doi: 10.1073/pnas.1408355111, August 25, 2014.

We used in utero bisphenol A (BPA) exposure as a model environmental exposure shown to disrupt neurodevelopment and exert long-term effects on behavior in animals and humans. We show that prenatal BPA induces lasting DNA methylation changes in the transcriptionally relevant region of the Bdnf gene in the hippocampus and blood of BALB/c mice and that these changes are consistent with BDNF changes in the cord blood of humans exposed to high maternal BPA levels in utero. Our data suggest that BDNF DNA methylation in the blood may be used as a predictor of brain BDNF DNA methylation and gene expression as well as behavioral vulnerability induced by early-life environmental exposure. Because BDNF expression and DNA methylation are altered in several psychiatric disorders that are associated with early-life adversity, including depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and autism, BDNF DNA methylation in the blood may represent a novel biomarker for the early detection of psychopathology.

Author: DES Daughter

Activist, blogger and social media addict committed to shedding light on a global health scandal and dedicated to raise DES awareness.

2 thoughts on “Epigenetic disturbances caused by bisphenol-A associated with psychiatric disorders”

  1. This is very interesting. I am not a scientist so pls forgive the question, but is the thesis here that DES might have s similar effect to BPA?

    1. Short answer is yes, since both BPA and DES are endocrine disruptors ; in many aspects BPA and DES are very similar…
      I have listed many studies about DES and psychological health here (2nd paragraph).

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