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Dr. M’s SPA Newsletter Audiocast Volume 14 Issue 19

The Book that I never published. It is time for me to take another look at the mother child story in book form. In 2019, I embarked on a project of writing a book about maternal health and WHY it matters tremendously that we address the issues driving offspring dysregulation. The time since has ushered in an era of podcast guests that in some instances have solidified my beliefs on knowns while also shattering some beliefs leading to new ideas. Over the coming weeks, I am going to relook at this topic.
Part of this project is going to be taking a page out of the Derek Sivers’ book writing style, brevity and meaning are paramount. I am naturally hyper verbose and my writing style follows this reality. Thus, I am going to fight my natural style and desires in an effort to make this book shorter, much shorter and still powerful in delivery.
Here goes!
WHY?
The story of normal maternal health and how we are disrupting it in modern America…….Also a Literature review and recipe of the week!
Enjoy,
Dr. M

Dr. M’s Women and Children First Podcast #60 – Moshe Szyf, Ph.D. – Hope and Epigenetics Part 2

This week’s guest is Professor Moshe Szyf.
This is the second story of hope for us as a species. We have a level of control over our outcome that is baked into our DNA.
Dr. Moshe Szyf joins the show today to discuss the social programming of the epigenome. Dr. Szyf and his colleague Dr. Meaney proposed over two decades ago the first set of evidence that the “social environment” early in life can alter DNA methylation launching the emerging field of “social epigenetics”. He also has illustrated that DNA methylation is a prime therapeutic target in cancer and other diseases to be explored and potentially manipulated for health.
“Together, they discovered that our genetic code, the actual sequential structure of our DNA, can pretty much shrug off the influence of any external environmental factors, short of massive radiation. However, the expression of individual genes within that sequence can be permanently altered by such seemingly innocuous influences as diet or how others treat us. Once triggered, a group of molecules called a methyl group attaches itself to the control centre of a gene, permanently switching on or off the manufacture of proteins that are essential to the workings of every cell in our body. In most tumours, this DNA methylation pattern has been knocked awry, leading to a gene being completely deactivated or triggered to abnormally high activity.” (McGill Reporter)
Dr. Szyf received his Ph. D from the Hebrew University and did his postdoctoral fellowship in Genetics at Harvard Medical School before he joined the department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. He currently holds the James McGill Professorship in Pharmacology. He is the founding co-director of the Sackler Institute for Epigenetics and Psychobiology at McGill and is a Fellow of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research Experience-based Brain and Biological Development program. Szyf has been the founder of the first “Pharma” to develop epigenetic pharmacology “Methylgene Inc.” and the first journal in epigenetics “Epigenetics”.
Please enjoy my conversation with Dr. Moshe Szyf,
Enjoy,
Dr. M

Dr. M’s Women and Children First Podcast #59 – Randy Jirtle, Ph. D. – The Imprintome and Hope

Randy Jirtle, Ph.D.
This week’s guest is Professor Randy Jirtle.
Dr. Randy Jirtle joins the show for the second time today to discuss his new research on the imprintome, the regulatory regions that at the earliest stages of fetal development control our epigentic and thus our genetic outcome. This is the Hope locus.
Time Magazine nominated him for person of the year in 2007 and had this to say about him: “Dr. Jirtle’s pioneering work in epigenetics and genomic imprinting has uncovered a vast territory in which a gene represents less of an inexorable sentence and more of an access point for the environment to modify the genome. His trailblazing discoveries have produced a far more complete and useful understanding of human development and diseases” — Time Magazine. This interview is ground zero for the Women and Children First Podcast as we discuss the underpinnings or mechanisms of disease risk for all humans as it relates to the environmental inputs of our lives that are driving health or disease at both the pregnancy and post natal periods. We look specifically at how maternal nutrition and later chemical exposure directly affected the health of the agouti mouse offspring. This experiment was the first of its kind and paved the way for a complete shift in human disease understanding. For parents, this podcast is really the beginning of everything that I am trying to convey regarding a healthy pregnancy and childhood. Without this interview, the following interviews will be more difficult to understand. The picture becomes very clear once his research is cemented in our minds.
His biography is as follows: Professor of Epigenetics at the Department of Biological Sciences, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC, and a Senior Scientist at McArdle Laboratory for Cancer Research at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI. He was previously professor of radiation oncology and associate professor of pathology at Duke University, Durham, NC, where he had been a faculty member since 1977. He graduated with a B.S. degree in nuclear engineering in 1970 and a Ph.D. degree in radiation biology in 1976, from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His awards list is long but the key to Dr. Jirtle is that he is a curious thinker and we are grateful for this.
Please enjoy my conversation with Dr. Randy Jirtle,
Enjoy,
Dr. M