Early life experiences can have lasting effects on an individual’s physiology, health and behaviour. Professor David Clayton will discuss two studies his research group is doing with songbirds, to identify underlying epigenetic mechanisms for such effects. In the zebra finch, parental vocalizations are apparently heard by the embyro while still in the egg, and can lead to lasting changes in how the individual responds to heat stress in later life. In the juvenile starling, the regularity of parental feeding can have lasting effects on adult physiology and cognition. In both models, we are testing hypotheses that these early signals lead to changes in specific gene DNA methylation that persist into adulthood.
This seminar is open to all and no registration is necessary.