Degree Type

Creative Component

Semester of Graduation

Spring 2020


Biomedical Sciences

First Major Professor

Dr. Michael Lyons

Second Major Professor

Dr. Thimmasettappa Thippeswamy


Master of Science (MS)


Biomedical Sciences


As modernization and sedentary lifestyles are significantly increasing, the direction in which neurological evolution takes place may be startling. The development of a larger brain allowed humans to differentiate from primates with our more complex brain development and cognition. This transition has previously been solely quantified through the nucleotide sequence alterations and behavioral analysis. However, the discovery of epigenetics gives rise to the contribution of environmental factors on heritable ways through which our DNA is expressed. The methods by which methylation and histone modification are inherited are varied, and few studies have been published analyzing the transgenerational effect of exercise. Transgenerational inheritance (F0-F2 offspring) requires differentiation from intergenerational effects (F0-F1 offspring), removing the contribution of the environmental stimuli altering DNA via embryologic exposure. Few groups have investigated the transgenerational contributions of parental exercise. This review will briefly discuss the molecular mediators which can measure evolutionary development of the brain and how the sudden transition to modernization and sedentary lifestyles could affect the future evolution of our brain.

Copyright Owner

Gardner, Cara

File Format


Included in

Evolution Commons