The Biology Study Program, FMIPA in collaboration with the Postgraduate Bioscience Study Program, Sebelas Maret State University held a Public Lecture with Dr. rer. grout. Wolfgang Nellen from Kassel University Germany on Thursday, February 18, 2016 in the Hall of Building B, FMIPA. The public lecture took the theme, Epigenetics: The Other Code.
Dr. rer. grout. Wolfgang Nellen is professor of genetics at Kassel University in Germany. In short, epigenetics is a study of the mechanism of making certain genes active (on) and inactive (off).
This science studies the changes that occur in gene expression due to environmental factors such as diet or stress. Epigenetics includes all aspects of the environment that have biological consequences and which characterize DNA through small changes in chemical groups, such as methylation or demethylation of nucleotides without affecting the sequence for the nucleotides themselves. These changes occur even before birth, i.e. the condition of the mother’s womb may involve epigenetic changes that will last throughout life and even generations will pass.
In other words, how our health and appearance in the future can be determined no matter how genetic (heredity) we are. If we have parents who suffer from certain diseases like cancer or whatever, we don’t have to have that disease one day. Or if we are born in a family that has obesity problems, we can choose to be slim, of course by changing our Genetic Expression.
This public lecture is expected to increase knowledge for students and the academic community of the Mathematics and Natural Sciences Faculty, Sebelas Maret State University, thereby increasing students’ motivation to study genetics more deeply. This was conveyed by Dr. Ratna Setyaningsih (Head of Biology Study Program) in her speech.