In two recent studies, researchers have found that a father’s diet affects the levels of specific small RNAs in his sperm, which in turn can affect gene regulation in offspring.
These results add to the growing list of ways in which a male’s lifestyle can influence his offspring, including through the sperm epigenome, microbiome transfer and seminal fluid signaling.
The first study conducted on mice, researchers from American Association for the Advancement of Science suggested that RNAs from sperm of HFD males contain the information to induce glucose intolerance, but not insulin resistance.
Meanwhile, the results of the second study conducted on mice demonstrated how RNA in sperm can be affected by diet, and that this can cause changes in gene regulation of offspring and associated metabolic disorder.
The research is published in the journal ‘Science.’