Vaccines “altering” human genes? Low levels of mercury exposure found to alter gene expression while causing extreme neurological disorders

Thursday, August 24, 2017
By Paul Martin

by: Tracey Watson
Thursday, August 24, 2017

Pregnant women, those who are trying to get pregnant, breastfeeding mothers, and young children, are all routinely cautioned against consuming fish like king mackerel, bigeye tuna, marlin, orange roughy, shark, swordfish and tilefish from the Gulf of Mexico, which are known to contain high levels of mercury. Studies have found that even small amounts of this neurotoxin are enough to “cause restricted brain development or other health problems for humans who eat them.” This damage is both severe and irreversible.

While several studies have been conducted to examine the toxicity of mercury in fish higher up the food chain, a recent study by the University of Geneva (UNIGE), published in the journal Scientific Reports, has more closely examined the effect of this heavy metal on the lower levels of the food chain, at the microalga level.

A UNIGE research team led by Professor Vera Slaveykova, vice-president of the School of Earth and environmental sciences at the university’s Faculty of Sciences, examined several samples of green Chlamydomonas reinhardtii microalga. These microalgae were selected because theirs are among the few genomes which have been fully sequenced at that level of the food chain. This information made it possible to compare how the gene expression of the microalgae changed when exposed to varying concentrations of mercury.

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