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Presentation Information

Penny Simkin

From Fetus to Adult: How Epigenetics and Pregnancy Events Influence One’s Lifespan

  • Speaker: Penny Simkin , PT, BA
  • Presentation Type:
  • Duration: 60 Mins
  • Credits: 1 CERP, 1 Nursing CEU, 1 CME, .1 Midwifery CEU

The exciting field of epigenetics contributes much to our understanding of the impact of intrauterine life on the child’s and adult’s physical and mental health, as well as the personality, stature and physical appearance. This presentation will give examples of historical events and discoveries that have led to today’s understanding that DNA – the genetic blueprint -- is only part of the equation that determines one’s life course. Epigenetics is the study of factors that foster or inhibit the expression of genes as dictated by DNA. Factors that interfere with optimal gene expression include maternal exposure to environmental toxins, violence or war, poor nutrition, emotional distress, racism, poverty and disease. The effects on the fetus can last a lifetime. The session ends with practical suggestions for institutions, individual birth workers and families to improve the maternal- fetal environment.