Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder is a collective term that represents fetal abnormalities associated with maternal alcohol consumption. Prenatal alcohol exposure and related anomalies are well characterized, but the molecular mechanism behind this phenomenon is not yet understood. Few insights have been gained from genetic and epigenetic studies of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. Our aim was to profile the important molecular regulators of ethanol-related alterations of the genome. For this purpose, we have analyzed the gene expression pattern of human carcinoma cell-derived embryoid bodies in the absence or presence of ethanol. A cDNA microarray analysis was used to profile mRNA expression in embryoid bodies at day 7 with or without ethanol treatment. A total of 493 differentially expressed genes were identified in response to 50 mM ethanol exposure. Of these, 111 genes were up-regulated, and 382 were down-regulated. Gene ontology term enrichment analysis revealed that these genes are involved in important biological processes: neurological system processes, cognition, behavior, sensory perception of smell, taste and chemical stimuli and synaptic transmission. Similarly, the enrichment of disease related genes included relevant categories such as neurological diseases, developmental disorders, skeletal and muscular disorders, and connective tissue disorders. Furthermore, we have identified a group of 26 genes that encode transcription factors. We validated the relative gene expression of several transcription factors using quantitative real time PCR. We hope that our study substantially contributes to the understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying the pathology of alcohol-mediated anomalies and facilitates further research. (C) 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.This work was supported by part of the Korean Alcohol Research Foundation, and by part of the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea Government (MSIP) (2013R1A1A3011026 to K.H.J, and 2011-0030049 to Y.G.C.)
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