How Genetics Can Affect Reproduction
by Gay Ben Tré
What does the science of genetics reveal about the blueprint we have inherited for the complex, orderly, predictable unfolding of physiological events that are required for reproduction? How can we use the latest research findings to our advantage?
Each one of the developmental events is the result of signaling of the DNA and RNA in the cells of the parents and child. The DNA/RNA must be signaled to turn on, and when the next stage of development is ready to occur, the DNA/RNA must be signaled to turn off, or silence, so the next stage can be signaled. If these signals are not given and the sequence of events is disrupted, the results can be seen in infertility, miscarriage, preeclampsia, prolonged or difficult labor, premature birth, defects in the brain, spine or spinal cord of the baby, and certain developmental or neurological delays that may include autism and downs syndrome. This list is far from exhaustive.
Geneticists have identified a particular group of genes, including the MTHFR, which are key in the signaling. When a parent has a mutation (SNP) in one or more of these genes, the signaling is disrupted. In the last century, folic acid supplementation was added to prenatal supplements and processed foods to help insure healthy signaling. Studies have measured a decrease in birth defects, in particular. However, the latest research shows that if a woman has one or more mutations in these key genes, she may be unable to completely break down and absorb the folic acid. In fact, this synthetic form of folate may well accumulate and create toxicity for mom and baby.
And for women who rely on whole food supplements, these same genetic mutations prevent the breaking down and absorbing of folate. This means that neither folic acid nor whole food folate adequately supply mom and baby. Estimates vary that between 20 percent and as many as 50 percent of Americans have these mutations.
Dr. Gay Ben Tré is a doctor of acupuncture, a master of Chinese herbal medicine and a registered nurse. For more than three decades, she has specialized in supporting the health of women and children. Her practice is located at 2 Richmond Square, Ste. 105, Providence. For more information, call 401-207-4670 or visit DrGayBenTre.com.
Free Genetic Screening for Women Seeking Pregnancy or Already Pregnant
During the month of May, Dr. Gay Ben Tré will offer free screening for the MTHFR, MTRR and MTR mutations to women seeking to become pregnant and for women already pregnant. She will conduct screenings at her office on the East Side, in Providence, between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., May 20, or by appointment on selected other days. To sign up, contact Ben Tré at [email protected] Type “Goldilocks Solution” in the email subject line.