Fetal programming of neuropsychiatric disorders.

Abstract

Starting from the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) hypotheses proposed by David Barker, namely fetal programming, in the past years, there is a growing evidence of the major role played by epigenetic factors during the intrauterine life and the perinatal period. Furthermore, it has been assessed that these factors can affect the health status in infancy and even in adulthood. In this review, we focus our attention on the fetal programming of the brain, analyzing the most recent literature concerning the epigenetic factors that can influence the development of neuropsychiatric disorders such as bipolar disorders, major depressive disorders, and schizophrenia. The perinatal epigenetic factors have been divided in two main groups: maternal factors and fetal factors. The maternal factors include diet, smoking, alcoholism, hypertension, malnutrition, trace elements, stress, diabetes, substance abuse, and exposure to environmental toxicants, while the fetal factors include hypoxia/asphyxia, placental insufficiency, prematurity, low birth weight, drugs administered to the mother or to the baby, and all factors causing intrauterine growth restriction. A better comprehension of the possible mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of these diseases may help researchers and clinicians develop new diagnostic tools and treatments to offer these patients a tailored medical treatment strategy to improve their quality of life. Birth Defects Research (Part C) 108:207-223, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

DOI: 10.1002/bdrc.21139

Cite this paper

@article{Faa2016FetalPO, title={Fetal programming of neuropsychiatric disorders.}, author={Armando Faa and Mirko Manchia and Roberta Pintus and Clara Gerosa and Maria Antonietta Marcialis and Vassilios Fanos}, journal={Birth defects research. Part C, Embryo today : reviews}, year={2016}, volume={108 3}, pages={207-223} }