Epigenetics is basically a system of turning genes on and off for the ultimate creation of a life.
The discovery of DNA enhanced the understanding of life and its great complexities. Further understanding of DNA has resulted in a new field of scientific study known as epigenetics; a simple example is how DNA is fixed in the nucleus of an egg but going forward as to how every cell comes into play to form the newborn chick.
To put it simply, a baby chick looks nothing like the egg from which it came. However diverse the cells might be, there is magnificent orchestration to arrive at the end result and commences at a point in how DNA is packed, resulting in the chick having genes that lead to the formation of fur, beak, muscle, etc. Another simple example clarifies how a pupa results in a magnificent butterfly.
Statistics reveal that a human being has 223.2 trillion feet of DNA that must be orchestrated to make you what you are, being complex in biblical in proportion.
A question arises whether this unique process can cause chaos. There is a perception that trauma can leave a chemical mark on a person’s genes, subsequently being passed on to future generations.
Identical twins often arouse interest and albeit that overall appearance does not differ but their eye colour may differ due to a modification of DNA. Similarly, when 79 pairs of identical twins were under scrutiny, one developed rheumatoid arthritis the other not once again due to changes in DNA and that changes might have damaging outcomes resulting in diseases like cancer brushing aside environmental issues like poor nutrition and unhealthy lifestyle.
Disregarding twins, it is common knowledge that one member of a reputable family turns out to be “a black sheep“ possibly due to environmental and emotional issues, interesting never the less!
Today, epigenetics is one of the hottest fields in life sciences and able to fill in some of the gaps in scientific questioning.This will continue to be a fascinating topic well into the future and perhaps give answers to many unsolved mysteries related to the human organism and other life.