Imprinted Genes, Postnatal Adaptations and Enduring Effects on Energy Homeostasis

  • Margalida Frontera
  • Benjamin Dickins
  • Antonius Plagge
  • Gavin Kelsey
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 626)


The effects of imprinted genes on fetal growth and development have been firmly established. By and large, their roles conform to a conflict over provision of limited maternal resources to offspring, such that paternally expressed imprinted genes in offspring generally promote growth of the fetus, while maternally expressed imprinted genes tend to restrict it. It is comparatively recently that the important effects of imprinted genes in postnatal physiology have begun to be demonstrated, although a similar conflict may apply. In this chapter, we shall review some of the genetic evidence for imprinted effects on obesity, consider the action of selected imprinted genes in the central and peripheral control of energy homeostasis and look in detail at the intriguing effects of imprinting at the Gnas locus. Finally, we shall discuss whether these observations fit expectations of the prevailing theory for the existence of imprinting in mammals and go on to consider imprinted genes as targets for developmental programming.


Adipose Tissue White Adipose Tissue Imprint Gene Energy Homeostasis Angelman Syndrome 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Landes Bioscience and Springer Science+Business Media 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Margalida Frontera
    • 1
  • Benjamin Dickins
    • 1
  • Antonius Plagge
    • 2
  • Gavin Kelsey
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Developmental Genetics and ImprintingThe Babraham InstituteCambridgeUK
  2. 2.Physiological Laboratory School of Biomedical SciencesUniversity of LiverpoolLiverpoolUK

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