Dr. Redei’s NIAAA study on Genetic Imprinting and FASD
Dr. Eva E. Redei, PhD, David Lawrence Stein Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Physiology at the Feinberg School of Medicine, in collaboration with Dr. Laura B.K Herzing, PhD, Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics in the Children’s Memorial Research Center, have started a new project titled “Epigenetic Consequences of Prenatal Alcohol Exposure”.
The study, funded by NIAAA, utilizes an animal model of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) that emulate many of the neurobehavioral deficits observed in children of alcohol consuming mothers. Dr. Redei and her team hypothesize that aberrant genetic imprinting in response to prenatal alcohol exposure contribute to the neurodevelopmental deficits observed in FASD, and that these alterations are transgenerationally inherited. Findings of the study have multiple implications from the significance of FASD treatment alternatives to the sociological consequences of multigenerational dysfunction.
Laura Sittig, a NUIN graduate student working in the lab of Dr. Redei, was recently awarded an NRSA (National Research Service Award) from NIAAA. Her project titled “Hormonal Programming and Epigenetic Imprinting in FAE”, aims to elucidate the contribution of alcohol-induced epigenetic effects in the fetal brain to the developmental susceptibility to depression and anxiety disorders seen after fetal alcohol exposure. Laura Sittig and the Redei lab presented their recent findings at the June 2009 annual meeting of the Endocrine Society in Washington DC, where the abstract was selected for press release. Further details of this presentation can be found at: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090610124426.htm
Dr. Redei was also awarded an American Recovery Act Administrative Supplement from NIAAA for her project titled “Prenatal alcohol: Hormone-regulated Genes and Behavior”. This supplement allows for the purchase of a much needed automated behavioral testing equipment.