Studies on parental aging are a very attractive field, although it is poorly understood how parental age affects embryonic development and adult traits of the offspring. In this study, we used the turquoise killifish Nothobranchius furzeri, as is the vertebrate with shortest captive lifespan and an interesting model. The embryos of N. furzeri can follow two distinct developmental pathways either entering diapause or proceeding through direct development. Thus, this embryonic plasticity allows this model to be used to study different factors that could affect their embryonic development, including parental age. The first goal of the present study was to investigate whether parental aging could affect the embryo development. To do this, we collected F1 embryos from two breeder groups (old parents and young parents). We monitored the duration of embryonic development and analyzed genes involved in dorsalization process. The second goal was to investigate if embryonic developmental plasticity could be modulated by an epigenetic process. To this end, the expression of DNMTs genes was examined. Our data support the hypothesis that diapause, occurring more frequently in embryos from old parents, is associated with increased expression of DNMT3A and DNMT3B suggesting an epigenetic control. Finally, we analyzed whether parental age could affect metabolism and growth during adult life. Morphometric results and qPCR analysis of genes from IGF system showed a slower growth in adults from old breeders. Moreover, a gender-specificity effect on growth emerged. In conclusion, these results may contribute to the better understanding of the complex mechanism of aging.

Effects of Parental Aging During Embryo Development and Adult Life: The Case of Nothobranchius furzeri

Terzibasi, Eva;Cellerino, Alessandro;
2018

Abstract

Studies on parental aging are a very attractive field, although it is poorly understood how parental age affects embryonic development and adult traits of the offspring. In this study, we used the turquoise killifish Nothobranchius furzeri, as is the vertebrate with shortest captive lifespan and an interesting model. The embryos of N. furzeri can follow two distinct developmental pathways either entering diapause or proceeding through direct development. Thus, this embryonic plasticity allows this model to be used to study different factors that could affect their embryonic development, including parental age. The first goal of the present study was to investigate whether parental aging could affect the embryo development. To do this, we collected F1 embryos from two breeder groups (old parents and young parents). We monitored the duration of embryonic development and analyzed genes involved in dorsalization process. The second goal was to investigate if embryonic developmental plasticity could be modulated by an epigenetic process. To this end, the expression of DNMTs genes was examined. Our data support the hypothesis that diapause, occurring more frequently in embryos from old parents, is associated with increased expression of DNMT3A and DNMT3B suggesting an epigenetic control. Finally, we analyzed whether parental age could affect metabolism and growth during adult life. Morphometric results and qPCR analysis of genes from IGF system showed a slower growth in adults from old breeders. Moreover, a gender-specificity effect on growth emerged. In conclusion, these results may contribute to the better understanding of the complex mechanism of aging.
IGF system; diapause; embryo development plasticity; killifish; transgenerational effects
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11384/68869
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