Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

In mice, obese dads produce heavier daughters with epigenetically altered breast tissue

Date:
April 4, 2014
Source:
Georgetown University Medical Center
Summary:
Obese male mice and normal weight female mice produce female pups that are overweight at birth and in childhood, and have increased number of 'terminal end buds' in their breast tissue -- the site where breast cancer often develops in rodents. 'Researchers traditionally study the maternal link to weight and cancer risk. This unusual study demonstrates a potential paternal link as well,' says the study author.

Obese male mice and normal weight female mice produce female pups that are overweight at birth and in childhood, and have increased number of "terminal end buds" in their breast tissue -- the site where cancer often develops in rodents.

The findings, presented by a Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center researcher at the AACR Annual Meeting 2014, come from one of the first animal studies to examine the impact of paternal obesity on future generations' cancer risk.

In addition, the researchers say they've found evidence that obesity could change the microRNA (miRNA) signature -- epigenetic regulators of gene expression -- in both the dad's sperm and the daughter's breast tissue, suggesting that miRNAs may carry the epigenetic information from obese dads to their daughters.

The miRNAs identified are known to regulate insulin receptor signaling, which is linked to alterations in body weight, and others molecular pathways that are associated with breast cancer development such as estrogen receptor signaling.

Obesity seems to sometimes run in families, as does some breast cancers. Maternal obesity is believed to influence both conditions in humans -- a woman who is heavy in pregnancy can produce larger babies, who may have increased risk of breast cancer later in life. But few if any studies have looked at the influence of dad's obesity on his offspring's cancer risk.

"This study provides evidence that, in animals, a fathers' body weight at the time of conception affects both their daughters' body weight both at birth and in childhood and likely their risk of breast cancer later in life," says the study's lead investigator, Sonia de Assis, PhD, an assistant professor in the Department of Oncology at Georgetown Lombardi. "Of course our study was done in mice, but it would be very interesting to know if the same associations hold for daughters of human fathers who were obese at the time of conception," she says.

De Assis and colleagues have previously found that pregnant rats that ate a high fat diet increased breast cancer risk in their female daughters and "granddaughters." That same risk was passed down from the son of the high-fat fed mother to the son's daughter.

"Researchers traditionally study the maternal link to weight and cancer risk. This unusual study demonstrates a potential paternal link as well," de Assis says. "Until we know about this association in men, we should stick to what we all know is good advice: women -- and men -- should eat a balanced diet not only for their own benefit but also to give their offspring's the best chances of being healthy."


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

Georgetown University Medical Center. "In mice, obese dads produce heavier daughters with epigenetically altered breast tissue." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 April 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140404140201.htm>.
Georgetown University Medical Center. (2014, April 4). In mice, obese dads produce heavier daughters with epigenetically altered breast tissue. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140404140201.htm
Georgetown University Medical Center. "In mice, obese dads produce heavier daughters with epigenetically altered breast tissue." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140404140201.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

Newsy (July 20, 2014) Cynthia Robinson claims R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company hid the health and addiction risks of its products, leading to the death of her husband in 1996. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Newsy (July 19, 2014) Research on plaque from ancient teeth shows that our prehistoric ancestor's had a detailed understanding of plants long before developing agriculture. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

AFP (July 18, 2014) Contaminated water in South Africa's northwestern town of Bloemhof kills three babies and hospitalises over 500 people. The incident highlights growing fears over water safety in South Africa. Duration: 02:22 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:
from the past week

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