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Trauma your parents experienced may still be hurting you

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New York’s Mount Sinai hospital found that gene changes stemming from Nazi torture and trauma can be passed down to offspring. Evidence supporting that genetic changes from environmental factors can be passed down to children (aka epigenetic inheritance) is the first of its kind.

The genes of 32 Jewish men and women who had been in a Nazi concentration camp during WWII and their children were analyzed and compared with those who were residing outside of Europe at the time of the war.

The research team focused their efforts in a region of a gene associated with stress hormone regulation. They found a correlation of epigenetic tags in the Holocaust survivors and their children, but none in the control group. It was also ruled out that the epigenetic tags were ones derived from the trauma that the children had survived themselves.

More research, however, is needed to identify how these epigenetic tags came to be inherited by the children, as genetic information is not influenced by the environment and it is thought that epigenetic  tags were wiped clean soon after the fertilization of the egg.

Source: The Guardian