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Molecular characterization of transgenerational epigenetic phenomena after genistein exposure in quail

Abstract : Knowledge about transgenerational inheritance in birds is still poor. In a pilot study, we demonstrated that some effects induced by environmental stressors were transmitted over three generations, in Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica) [1]. Two "epilines" of quail (Epi + and Epi-) were produced using fertilized eggs from the same founder population, a quail line from a divergent selection on a behavioral trait, social motivation. A methylation modifier (Genistein) was injected (Epi +) or not (Epi-) before incubation. After 3 parallel generations of intra-line reproduction, without any other injection, several traits were affected by the ancestors treatment, including both reproduction (e.g. age at first egg delayed for 8 days) and behavioral traits. The mating strategy and the number of founders used allowed us to minimize the genetic variation between lines, which could have explained the phenotypic differences observed, and to test the existence of a transgenerational transmission of the effects of the environment. This study aims to complement the previous phenotypic analysis with molecular analyzes. The objective is to test the hypothesis of an epigenetic cause of the observed phenotypic variations, by characterizing the genomic regions with significant methylation differences between the animals derived from injected ancestors and the animals from control ancestors. A complementary analysis of the polymorphisms observed between the two epilines should make it possible to discern the epigenetic variability due to the treatment of the ancestors from that due to the possible genetic differences between the two epilines, these genetic variants being possibly linked to the initial treatment [2] or derived from genetic drift. The DNA was extracted from the blood of 24 G3 animals (6 males and 6 females per epiline) and analyzed by Whole Genome Bisulfite Sequencing (WGBS). An average of about 77 million reads per individual were obtained, corresponding to an average depth of 12X per position, per individual. Analyzes are underway with a pipeline based on standard tools (Bismark, methylKit, DSS). In parallel, the DNA of the same individuals was extracted from the gonads, in order to perform global methylation studies using the LUMA technique (LUminometric Methylation Assay). These analyzes did not show any difference in methylation levels between the two epilines but it showed a difference of the methylation rate between males and females.
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Submitted on : Friday, June 5, 2020 - 4:32:09 AM
Last modification on : Friday, August 5, 2022 - 2:38:10 PM


  • HAL Id : hal-02789041, version 1
  • PRODINRA : 483878


Sophie Leroux, Marie Jérémie, David Gourichon, Vincent Coustham, Tatiana Zerjal, et al.. Molecular characterization of transgenerational epigenetic phenomena after genistein exposure in quail. Epigenetic Inheritance Symposium 2019, Aug 2019, Zurich, Switzerland. ⟨hal-02789041⟩



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