Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Epigenetics and Puberty

Current theories on the reaching of puberty involve the idea that adolescents need to reach a certain body weight or percent fat in order to trigger puberty, and the increasing weights of children can explain why the average age of puberty is decreasing.  This article introduces an epigenetic mechanism in which the expression of a gene Kiss1 is regulated by levels of PcG proteins which are in turn regulated by epigenetic mechanisms.  By interfering with this process, researchers were able to delay puberty in mice.  However, it might be some time before we can get excited over understanding the mechanism in humans or even non-human primate puberty regulation.

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