Act pregnant before you get pregnant. These are all things we tell women to do before they get pregnant to have a healthy baby, but what about the guys? Kirtly Jones from obstetrics and gynecology at University of Utah Health and we're talking about men, sperm, and the babies they make on The Scope.
Covering all aspects of women's health. Kirtly Jones on The Scope. In the past 20 years, we've been learning about changes to genes that happen very early in development, very early.
As early as the first week after fertilization of the human egg. Before a woman even knows that she's pregnant, the environment that the developing embryo sees turns genes on, or off, or modifies the way they work. This continues through pregnancy and early childhood development and it's a process that's called epigenetic.
It means that the genes of the developing baby and child are not changed in their basic DNA, but the way the genes work. How they are transcribed to make proteins, that's how they're working, and that's changed. But we always thought that men just provided genetic material with sperm.