DNA methylation of a promoter region in different age groups - (Oct/05/2011 )
I am a undergrad student investigating if there are differences in DNA methylation of a gene promoter region in three distinct age group. My hypothesis is: DNA methylation will change (decrease) will increasing age. Although the best way to find out about this is to conduct a longitudinal study, however, this project is part of my Honours and so my aim was to establish a baseline into whether I could detect and measure methylation changes.
I am done with my lab work and found that there are changes in methylation patterns but they were not what I was expecting (eg. a decrease with age).
So does anyone know of any good studies that have investigated DNA methylation in the presenilin-1 gene and in at least one age group? Also, I didn't know much about epigenetics when I started and I bisulfite treated DNA extracted from whole blood (as oppose to lymphocytes and/or a specific type of WBCs). Has anyone seen significant differences in methylation between different types of WBCs? Lastly, I constructed a heat map to illustrate to my examiners that there were changes in methylation at CpG sites across my three age groups (young, middle and old). However, some of these changes included the middle age group showing the highest level of demethylation (e.g. conversion of Cs to Ts at CpG sites) compared to the old age group. Does anyone know what this means?
Thank you for you time and sorry for waffling!
Cindy there have been studies and will be studies that are coming out showing longitudinal DNA methylation changes globally. Google is your friend
Thanks for the reply methylnick.