New Studies on the Temporal Dynamics of Gene Expression

Highlights from a Nature Reviews Neuroscience (12/2011) writeup

  • Eighty percent “of the genes examined are differentially regulated across brain regions (reflecting anatomical differences) and/or over time.”
  • “[T]he greatest regional differences in expression occur during prenatal development.”
  • The authors were able to use their data set “generate spatio-temporal expression trajectories of genes associated with particular developmental processes or diseases, such as schizophrenia or autism spectrum disorder.”
  • In a second study, researchers were able to note “significant changes in expression throughout development and identify a consistent architecture of transcription across subjects from different races, despite the large number of genetic polymorphisms among them.”
  • Rate of gene expression increase again after age 50 “when it rises again mirroring the changes in gene expression that are seen in early postnatal life.”


This entry was posted in Gene expression by Constance A. Cummings. Bookmark the permalink.

About Constance A. Cummings

Constance A. Cummings, PhD, is Project Director of the non-profit Foundation for Psychocultural Research, which supports and advances interdisciplinary research and scholarship at the intersection of brain, mind, culture, and mental health and illness. She is co-editor (with Carol Worthman, Paul Plotsky, and Dan Schechter) of Formative Experiences: The Interaction of Caregiving, Culture, and Developmental Psychobiology (Cambridge University Press, 2010) and (with Laurence Kirmayer and Rob Lemelson) the forthcoming Re-Visioning Psychiatry: Cultural Phenomenology, Critical Neuroscience, and Global Mental Health (Cambridge, 2015). She received her doctorate in theoretical linguistics from New York University.

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