DNA methylation

Epigenome-Wide Association Study of Systemic Effects of Obesity Susceptibility in Human Twins

The current study was designed to use an epigenome-wide association approach (EWAS) to identify potential systemic DNA methylation alterations that are associated with obesity using 22 discordant twin pairs. Buccal cells (from a cheek swab) were used as a non-obesity relevant purified marker cell for the epigenetic analysis. Analysis of differential DNA methylation regions (DMRs) […]

Epigenome-wide association study of physical activity and physiological parameters in discordant monozygotic twins

An epigenome-wide association study (EWAS) was performed on buccal cells from monozygotic-twins (MZ) reared together as children, but who live apart as adults. Cohorts of twin pairs were used to investigate associations between neighborhood walkability and objectively measured physical activity (PA) levels. Due to dramatic cellular epigenetic sex differences, male and female MZ twin pairs […]

Transcriptomic and methylomic features in asthmatic and non-asthmatic twins

Asthma is the most prevalent chronic lung inflammatory disorder characterized by reversible airflow obstruction, affecting 358 million people worldwide, with aggravating factors like obesity, attention‐deficit/hyperactivity disorder, socioeconomic status like poor healthcare affordability and facility, smoking and alcohol intake. RNA sequencing (RNA‐seq) in atopic asthma, childhood asthma and adult‐onset severe asthma has improved our understanding of cellular and […]

Genome-wide profiling of DNA methylome and transcriptome in peripheral blood monocytes for major depression: A Monozygotic Discordant Twin Study

DNA methylation plays an important role in major depressive disorder (MDD), but the specific genes and genomic regions associated with MDD remain largely unknown. Here we conducted genome-wide profiling of DNA methylation (Infinium MethylationEPIC BeadChip) and gene expression (RNA-seq) in peripheral blood monocytes from 79 monozygotic twin pairs (mean age 38.2 ± 15.6 years) discordant on lifetime […]

Study Design and Rationale for the Mood and Methylation Study: A Platform for Multi-Omics Investigation of Depression in Twins

Major depression is a complex disorder with no single, direct causal mechanism. Morbidity has been linked to genetic processes, developmental history, and unique environmental exposures. Epigenetic mechanisms, especially DNA methylation, are also likely important factors in the pathogenesis of major depressive disorder (MDD). A community-based twin sample has many advantages for epigenetic studies, given the […]

DNA methylation associated with healthy aging of elderly twins

Variation in healthy aging and lifespan is ascribed more to various non-genetic factors than to inherited genetic determinants, and a major goal in aging research is to reveal the epigenetic basis of aging. One approach to this goal is to find genomic sites or regions where DNA methylation correlates with biological age. Using health data […]

Childhood Trauma, DNA Methylation of Stress-related Genes, and Depression: Findings from Two Monozygotic Twin Studies

Objective: DNA methylation has been associated with both early life stress and depression. This study examined the combined association of DNA methylation at multiple CpG probes in five stress-related genes with depressive symptoms and tested whether these genes methylation mediated the association between childhood trauma and depression in two monozygotic (MZ) twin studies. Methods: The current analysis […]

Transcriptional Signatures of Sleep Duration Discordance in Monozygotic Twins

Introduction: Habitual short sleep duration is associated with adverse metabolic, cardiovascular, and inflammatory effects. Co-twin study methodologies account for familial (eg, genetics and shared environmental) confounding, allowing assessment of subtle environmental effects, such as the effect of habitual short sleep duration on gene expression. Therefore, we investigated gene expression in monozygotic twins discordant for actigraphically phenotyped […]

Mitochondrial DNA Copy Number in Sleep Duration Discordant Monozygotic Twins

Study objectives: Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number is an important component of mitochondrial function and varies with age, disease, and environmental factors. We aimed to determine whether mtDNA copy number varies with habitual differences in sleep duration within pairs of monozygotic twins. Setting: Academic clinical research center. Participants: 15 sleep duration discordant monozygotic twin pairs (30 twins, 80% […]