October 15


Epigenetics, Twins, And Why Eyes Don't Grow Out Of Your Arms | Breakthrough Junior Challenge 2019

By heheals

October 15, 2020

So much to learn and talk about, yet so little time. This mini-intro to Epigenetics is the first ‘real’ video I’ve produced. Hope you enjoy it and thank you for watching!

Note: Yes, eyes growing out of your arms is a reference to Danzo. Cells have the same DNA but differentiate thanks to epigenetics. I was hoping to animate it with the Sharingan and all, but alas, not enough time.

Epigenetics is really fascinating. The studies, the experiments, the theories, and the findings, all made the research for this video really fun. However, I decided to focus on the concepts I learned instead. I hope this video entices you to learn more. Some points I found interesting:

– Exaptation and how epigenetic mechanisms are involved in memory formation
– how pre-natal experiences affect you
– trans-generational epigenetic inheritance
– Links between cancer and epigenetics
– The agouti mouse model


Stuff I read before making this video and/or would like to read for the future:

– The Developing Genome by David S. Moore
– The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddartha Mukherjee
– The Epigenetics Revolution by Nessa Carey
– Epigenetics, Second Edition by CSHL Press https://www.cshlpress.com/link/epigen.htm

– https://ocw.mit.edu/courses/biology/7-347-epigenetic-regulation-of-stem-cells-spring-2014/syllabus/
– https://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/epigenetics/

– https://www.nature.com/articles/nrg.2017.57
– https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6380351/pdf/nihms-1005669.pdf
– https://www.futuremedicine.com/doi/10.2217/epi-2016-0162?url_ver=Z39.88-2003&rfr_id=ori%3Arid%3Acrossref.org&rfr_dat=cr_pub%3Dwww.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov&
– https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2822875/

About BJC
The Breakthrough Junior Challenge is an annual global competition for students to inspire creative thinking about science. Students ages 13 to 18 from countries across the globe are invited to create and submit original videos (3:00 minutes in length maximum) that bring to life a concept or theory in the life sciences, physics or mathematics.

Photos of twins and background images are from Unsplash and Pexels.

DNA Methylation Illustration by Christoph Bock, Max Planck Institute for Informatics

Photos of the Human Genome Project in print form reproduced with the permission of the awesome https://twitter.com/SuseJohnston and

Music from https://filmmusic.io:
“Magic Scout Cottages” by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com)
Licence: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)

Illustration of DNA/Histones/Nucleosomes/Chromatin adapted from https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fncel.2018.00078/full

And also a huge thanks to all the awesome people who made this video possible with their feedback and terrific support.




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