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Publication Detail

Title: Seasonally variant gene expression in full-term human placenta.

Authors: Clarkson-Townsend, Danielle A; Kennedy, Elizabeth; Everson, Todd M; Deyssenroth, Maya A; Burt, Amber A; Hao, Ke; Chen, Jia; Pardue, Machelle T; Marsit, Carmen J

Published In FASEB J, (2020 08)

Abstract: Seasonal exposures influence human health and development. The placenta, as a mediator of the maternal and fetal systems and a regulator of development, is an ideal tissue to understand the biological pathways underlying relationships between season of birth and later life health outcomes. Here, we conducted a differential expression (DE) analysis of season of birth in full-term human placental tissue to evaluate whether the placenta may be influenced by seasonal cues. Of the analyzed transcripts, 583 displayed DE between summer and winter births (False Discovery Rate [FDR] q < .05); among these, BHLHE40, MIR210HG, and HILPDA had increased expression among winter births (Bonferroni P < .05). Enrichment analyses of the seasonally variant genes between summer and winter births indicated overrepresentation of transcription factors HIF1A, VDR, and CLOCK, among others, and of GO term pathways related to ribosomal activity and infection. Additionally, a cosinor analysis found rhythmic expression for approximately 11.9% of all 17 664 analyzed placental transcripts. These results suggest that the placenta responds to seasonal cues and add to the growing body of evidence that the placenta acts as a peripheral clock, which may provide a molecular explanation for the extensive associations between season of birth and health outcomes.

PubMed ID: 32574425 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Adolescent; Adult; Circadian Clocks/genetics*; Circadian Rhythm/genetics; Female; Fetus; Gene Expression Profiling/methods; Gene Expression/genetics*; Humans; Male; Parturition/genetics*; Placenta/metabolism*; Pregnancy; Seasons; Young Adult

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