Environment and genes: Are we masters of world perception?

There is a pregnant woman in front of me. I look at her and she fills me with tenderness. I was move by the hope, excitement, and love. Imagine new life beating inside you. There are also the amazing shifts and changes happening every moment that make pregnancy a miracle. However, as a researcher, I know the importance of environment and genes. I’m also intereste in the non-obvious: a mother not only provides shelter and food for her children. It also conveys your emotions, from your happiness to your stress. What’s more: Today we know that the mother also transmits her vision of the world, her environment, and the life that awaits her. This perception can leave its mark on the newborn. Environment and genes: Are we masters of world perception? You may be wondering how this is possible. You might also think that your genes, the genes you inherit from your parents, are set in stone. This is not the case: in fact, they only predetermine us, rather than determine us.

Our environment will promote so-called epigenetic modifications

Changes in the way certain genes function. The first epigenetic modifications are already present in our first environment: the maternal uterus. It’s simple: if our mothers suffered pain or pleasure during pregnancy, our genes won’t express Iran Mobile Database the same way. A mother’s emotional state during pregnancy leaves an imprint on us and prepares us for life. Biochemical signals are passe from mother to offspring, and by changing the expression of genes, they communicate to the child the type of world they will live in. There are many studies devoted to uncovering how stress in pregnant mothers leads to epigenetic changes. The starting point is that the prenatal period is a critical window for ontogeny. Environmental influences play a leading role. From there, we see how different stressful situations can ultimately impact a child’s future health. For example, in different studies it was found that children whose mothers experienced stress during pregnancy had fewer cortisol receptors in their hippocampus. It has its logic.

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Let’s go back to the pregnant mother

I mentioned at the beginning of this article. Let’s imagine that you are stressed out and full of worries. What are you passing on to your children? “Be prepared, because life is tough. Stay alert and be ready to fight.” The idea is to give you Nigeria Phone Number List an advantage in the face of adversity. In fact, if you were born into a war environment, alarm programming could save your life. Now, if you were born into a more peaceful environment, this programming would cause you to see life’s small problems as constant dangers. The same goes for humans. Moshe Szyf is a pioneer in epigenetics. In his work, he studies how organisms reprogram their genomes in response to social factors such as stress and lack of food. Their fascinating research reveals things like how we are hard-wired to know our place in society. Whether our social status is falling or rising; whether we are pawns or bosses. This knowledge leaves a genetic imprint on our DNA. These types of studies, where stress is induced during pregnancy or offspring are at birth, obviously cannot be done in humans.

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