EPICONCEPT
Epigenetics and Periconception Environment
COST Action FA1201
Fluorescent microscopy image of a blastocyst from horse. By courtesy of Katriens Smits, Ghent University, Belgium
 
 
Working Group 2:
Periconception Environment

Lead
Prof Kevin Sinclair

Deputy-Lead
Dr Anne Navarrete-Santos

Aims
To identify environmental factors that can lead to epigenetic modifications in gametes and pre-implantation mammalian embryos:
Parental diet
Environmental chemicals
Physical/emotional stressors
Parental health
Seasonal factors (eg photoperiod)
Gamete/embryo manipulations associated with assisted reproductive technology (ART)


To identify stages of development during the periconceptional period that are particularly sensitive to epigenetic modifications:
Germ-cell specification
Spermatogenesis/spermiogenesis
Oocyte growth/maturation
Fertilisation
Preimplantation development
Gastrulation

To characterise the nature of epigenetic modifications induced to:
DNA
RNA
DNA associated proteins

To understand the long-term developmental consequences of periconceptional epigenetic modifications:
Fetal development
Neonatal viability
Offspring growth and long-term health
Sexual dimorphic effects
Persistency and epigenetic inheritance
Ageing
Guide for COST Participation

Rules of Participation
Epiconcept
Epigenetics and Periconception Environment