Friday, April 4, 2014

Epigenetics - Suicide Risk #5

A study has shown that childhood abuse (defined in this study as "sexual contact, severe physical abuse and/or severe neglect") leads to epigenetic modifications of glucocorticoid receptor expression, which play a role in hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) activity. Maternal care influences hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) function in the rat through epigenetic programming of glucocorticoid receptor expression. These findings translate previous results from rat to humans and suggest a common effect of parental care on the epigenetic regulation of hippocampal glucocorticoid receptor expression.  In humans, childhood abuse alters HPA stress responses and increases the risk of suicide. T

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