Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers link DDT, obesity

Date:
October 22, 2013
Source:
Washington State University
Summary:
Researchers say ancestral exposures to environmental compounds like the insecticide DDT may be a factor in high rates of obesity. The finding comes as DDT is getting a second look as a tool against malaria.

Washington State University researchers say ancestral exposures to environmental compounds like the insecticide DDT may be a factor in high rates of obesity. The finding comes as DDT is getting a second look as a tool against malaria.

"What your great-grandmother was exposed to during pregnancy, like DDT, may promote a dramatic increase in your susceptibility to obesity, and you will pass this on to your grandchildren in the absence of any continued exposures," says Michael Skinner, WSU professor and founder of its Center for Reproductive Biology. He and his colleagues document their finding in the current issue of the journal BMC Medicine.

When Skinner and his colleagues exposed gestating rats to DDT, they saw no altered rates of obesity in the parent or first generation of offspring. But the disease developed in more than half the third-generation males and females. The researchers say the insecticide may be affecting how genes are turned on and off in the offspring of an exposed animal, even though its DNA sequences remain unchanged.

This is called transgenerational epigenetic inheritance. In recent years, the Skinner lab has documented epigenetic effects from a host of environmental toxicants, including plastics, pesticides, fungicides, dioxins, hydrocarbons and the plasticizer bisphenol-A or BPA.

However, says Skinner, the frequency of DDT effects on obesity are far greater than other toxicants his lab has reviewed.

He notes that more than 50 years have passed since Rachel Carson's book "Silent Spring" documented many of DDT's effects on the environment. Use of DDT has since been banned in the U.S. However, says Skinner, "the third generation of people exposed in the 1950s is now of adult age and has a dramatic increase in diseases such as obesity."

Meanwhile, he says, groups like the U.S. Agency for International Development and the World Health Organization are backing use of DDT to control malaria in developing countries.

"The potential transgenerational actions of DDT need to be considered in the risk-benefit analysis of its use," says Skinner.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Washington State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Michael K Skinner, Mohan Manikkam, Rebecca Tracey, Carlos Guerrero-Bosagna, Muksitul Haque, Eric E Nilsson. Ancestral dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) exposure promotes epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of obesity. BMC Medicine, 2013; 11 (1): 228 DOI: 10.1186/1741-7015-11-228

Cite This Page:

Washington State University. "Researchers link DDT, obesity." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 October 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131022205119.htm>.
Washington State University. (2013, October 22). Researchers link DDT, obesity. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131022205119.htm
Washington State University. "Researchers link DDT, obesity." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131022205119.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 18, 2014) Researchers at The National University of Singapore have invented a new microneedle patch that could offer a faster and less painful delivery of drugs such as insulin and painkillers. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) The first nurse to be diagnosed with Ebola at a Dallas hospital walked down the stairs of an executive jet into an ambulance at an airport in Frederick, Maryland, on Thursday. Pham will be treated at the National Institutes of Health. (Oct. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) A Caribbean cruise ship carrying a Dallas health care worker who is being monitored for signs of the Ebola virus is heading back to Texas, US, after being refused permission to dock in Cozumel, Mexico. (Oct. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

AFP (Oct. 17, 2014) All four suspected Ebola cases admitted to hospitals in Spain on Thursday have tested negative for the deadly virus in a first round of tests, the government said Friday. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins