Journal Article

Aberrant Epigenetic Regulation Could Explain the Relationship of Paternal Age to Schizophrenia

Mary C. Perrin, Alan S. Brown and Dolores Malaspina

in Schizophrenia Bulletin

Published on behalf of Maryland Psychiatric Research Center

Volume 33, issue 6, pages 1270-1273
Published in print November 2007 | ISSN: 0586-7614
Published online September 2007 | e-ISSN: 1745-1701 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/schbul/sbm093
Aberrant Epigenetic Regulation Could Explain the Relationship of Paternal Age to Schizophrenia

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The causal mechanism underlying the well-established relation between advancing paternal age and schizophrenia is hypothesized to involve mutational errors during spermatogenesis that occur with increasing frequency as males age. Point mutations are well known to increase with advancing paternal age while other errors such as altered copy number in repeat DNA and chromosome breakage have in some cases also been associated with advancing paternal age. Dysregulation of epigenetic processes may also be an important mechanism underlying the association between paternal age and schizophrenia. Evidence suggests that advancing age as well as environmental exposures alter epigenetic regulation. Errors in epigenetic processes, such as parental imprinting can have serious effects on the offspring both pre- and postnatally and into adulthood. This article will discuss parental imprinting on the autosomal and X chromosomes and the alterations in epigenetic regulation that may lead to such errors.

Keywords: methylation; imprinting; X-chromosome inactivation; schizophrenia

Journal Article.  2174 words. 

Subjects: Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

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