Father's lasting influence: Molecular foundations of intergenerational transmission of the paternal environment

Published: 22 April 2015
Laval and McGill researchers team up with Health Canada and international researchers from Africa, Italy, Copenhagen and Greenland to investigate the impact of environmental exposures on the hertibale information coded in the fathers sperm and the health of offspring.  The research team includes Professor Sarah Kimmins of the Department of Animal Science and is funded for $1.5 million by the Institute of Aboriginal Health, and the Institute of Gender and Health. The role of toxicant exposures such as those found in Canada’s north and in regions sprayed with DDT in Africa will be assessed for their impact on the heritable information in the sperm epigenome and the consequences of offspring health.  Birth defects and chronic disease in toxicant exposed regions (PCBs and pesticides, including DDT) may be linked to paternal exposures and the team will explore routes of prevention including the possibility that paternal folate supplementation may serve to palliate the effects of exposures.
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