‘Pollution’s dangers can be passed on to next generation’

New Delhi, Dec 06 (ANI): Parent’s exposure to dirty air before conceiving could have a negative impact on the heart health of the offspring later in life. Wondering about the possible health risks for children of people routinely exposed to highly polluted air, including soldiers and residents of some of the world’s largest cities, the researchers studied the effects of dirty air on mice. And they found an abundance of evidence of harm to the offspring of parents that routinely breathed dirty air prior to mating. Heart function was impaired. Inflammatory markers linked to increased heart disease risk were high. They had markers of oxidative stress, a condition in which levels of beneficial antioxidants are low. Calcium regulatory proteins, which are critical to the function of the beating heart, were altered. And these mice were young and otherwise healthy – comparable to 20-year-old humans. Researchers uncovered evidence of gene-related differences that might explain the cardiovascular changes they saw. They examined epigenetic regulators, which play an important role in the expression of genes – meaning that they have influence over predisposition to health problems, including cardiovascular disease.

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