alexa Homocysteine and DNA methylation: a review of animal and human literature.
Reproductive Medicine

Reproductive Medicine

Journal of Fertilization: In Vitro - IVF-Worldwide, Reproductive Medicine, Genetics & Stem Cell Biology

Author(s): Mandaviya PR, Stolk L, Heil SG

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Abstract Homocysteine (Hcy) is a sulfur-containing non-protein forming amino acid, which is synthesized from methionine as an important intermediate in the one-carbon pathway. High concentrations of Hcy in a condition called hyperhomocysteinemia (HHcy) are an independent risk factor for several disorders including cardiovascular diseases and osteoporotic fractures. Since Hcy is produced as a byproduct of the methyltransferase reaction, alteration in DNA methylation is studied as one of the underlying mechanisms of HHcy-associated disorders. In animal models, elevated Hcy concentrations are induced either by diet (high methionine, low B-vitamins, or both), gene knockouts (Mthfr, Cbs, Mtrr or Mtr) or combination of both to investigate their effects on DNA methylation or its markers. In humans, most of the literature involves case-control studies concerning patients. The focus of this review is to study existing literature on HHcy and its role in relation to DNA methylation. Apart from this, a few studies investigated the effect of Hcy-lowering trials on restoring DNA methylation patterns, by giving a folic acid or B-vitamin supplemented diet. These studies which were conducted in animal models as well as humans were included in this review. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. This article was published in Mol Genet Metab and referenced in Journal of Fertilization: In Vitro - IVF-Worldwide, Reproductive Medicine, Genetics & Stem Cell Biology

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