Introduction to the Special Section on Epigenetics.

Journal Article

Epigenetics provides the opportunity to revolutionize our understanding of the role of genetics and the environment in explaining human behavior, although the use of epigenetics to study human behavior is just beginning. In this introduction, the authors present the basics of epigenetics in a way that is designed to make this exciting field accessible to a wide readership. The authors describe the history of human behavioral epigenetic research in the context of other disciplines and graphically illustrate the burgeoning of research in the application of epigenetic methods and principles to the study of human behavior. The role of epigenetics in normal embryonic development and the influence of biological and environmental factors altering behavior through epigenetic mechanisms and developmental programming are discussed. Some basic approaches to the study of epigenetics are reviewed. The authors conclude with a discussion of challenges and opportunities, including intervention, as the field of human behavioral epigenetics continue to grow.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Lester, BM; Conradt, E; Marsit, C

Published Date

  • 2016

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 87 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 29 - 37

PubMed ID

  • 26822440

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC4943839

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1467-8624

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1111/cdev.12489


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States