Diverse Epigenetic Epidemiology Partnership (DEEP)

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The CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CSIR-CCMB), Hyderabad, is set to be part of the Diverse Epigenetic Epidemiology Partnership (DEEP).

About Diverse Epigenetic Epidemiology Partnership (DEEP)

  • It is a ground-breaking integrated genomics and epigenomics study to understand the genetics behind Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in diverse populations, including South Asians.
  • The project is to uncover the effects of genomic and environmental diversity in disease risk observed in people across the world, including those in Asia, Africa and North and South America.
  • It is a five-year international project.
  • Researchers will be studying individuals representing diverse genetic and environmental contexts and learn which DNA methylation patterns contribute to their disease risk in each context
  • The study will develop software and infrastructure and conduct advanced statistical analyses to build new resources.
  • These new resources will sit alongside international health and genetics databases to look at trends in variation in DNA methylation.
  • Significance of this initiative
  • This research will enable identification of disease-causing mechanisms that are common worldwide and those which are unique to particular groups or regions.
  • It will help with answering questions such as whether medicines developed in one part of the world will be effective for all.
  • Ultimately the DEEP study hopes to enable targeted interventions or treatments and reduce global health disparity and inequity.

What is DNA methylation?

  • It is a process where chemical groups attach to DNA in order to help to turn genes on and off.
  • It is a type of epigenetic modification, helps the body to respond to environmental signals and ultimately contributes to whole system health and disease status.
  • Understanding relationships between DNAm, genetics and environment is essential for understanding pathways of health, disease and consequences.

Q1: What is Epidemiology ?

It is the scientific study of how diseases and health-related conditions spread within populations and how they can be controlled or prevented. Epidemiologists are public health professionals who investigate patterns, causes, and effects of diseases in communities.

Source: CSIR-CCMB study to understand genetics behind diseases