Biological marks of early-life socioeconomic experience is detected in the adult inflammatory transcriptome

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Title: Biological marks of early-life socioeconomic experience is detected in the adult inflammatory transcriptome
Authors: Castagné, R
Kelly-Irving, M
Campanella, G
Guida, F
Krogh, V
Palli, D
Panico, S
Sacerdote, C
Tumino, R
Kleinjans, J
De Kok, T
Kyrtopoulos, SA
Lang, T
Stringhini, S
Vermeulen, R
Vineis, P
Delpierre, C
Chadeau-Hyam, M
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Consistent evidence is accumulating to link lower socioeconomic position (SEP) and poorer health, and the inflammatory system stands out as a potential pathway through which socioeconomic environment is biologically embedded. Using bloodderived genome-wide transcriptional profiles from 268 Italian participants of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohort, we evaluated the association between early life, young and later adulthood SEP and the expression of 845 genes involved in human inflammatory responses. These were examined individually and jointly using several inflammatory scores. Our results consistently show that participants whose father had a manual (as compared to nonmanual) occupation exhibit, later in life, a higher inflammatory score, hence indicating an overall increased level of expression for the selected inflammatory-related genes. Adopting a life course approach, these associations remained statistically significant upon adjustment for later-in-life socioeconomic experiences. Sensitivity analyses indicated that our findings were not affected by the way the inflammatory score was calculated, and were replicated in an independent study. Our study provides additional evidence that childhood SEP is associated with a sustainable upregulation of the inflammatory transcriptome, independently of subsequent socioeconomic experiences. Our results support the hypothesis that early social inequalities impacts adult physiology.
Issue Date: 9-Dec-2016
Date of Acceptance: 10-Nov-2016
ISSN: 2045-2322
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
Journal / Book Title: Scientific Reports
Volume: 6
Copyright Statement: © 2016 The Authors. Published by Nature Publishing Group. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit
Sponsor/Funder: Commission of the European Communities
Funder's Grant Number: 633666
Publication Status: Published
Conference Place: England
Article Number: 38705
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Medicine
Epidemiology, Public Health and Primary Care

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