The journey of our genetic material
Classical genetics explains how genetic material is transmitted from one generation to the next. However, the environment also has a demonstrable influence on genetic information. Methyl groups that activate or repress individual genes play an important role in these epigenetic mechanisms
publication date14TH September 2021
INFOGRAPHIC MAXIMILIAN NERTINGER
Human DNA is located in the cell nucleus of stem cells, distributed over 46 chromosomes. The DNA strand in the x-shaped chromosomes is wound around protein coils, the histones, like a power cable around a cable drum. This is exactly where a fascinating process takes place under the influence of methyl groups: The docking or undocking of the methyl groups on the DNA decides whether environmental influences such as diseases or hunger remain in the genome of a person and are thus passed on through generations. But what exactly happens on the DNA strand? And why is it that some environmental influences shape the genome over the long term and some don’t? An explanatory video provides answers.
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