Human and animal studies have revealed a strong association between periconceptional environmental factors, such as poor maternal diet, and an increased propensity for cardiovascular and metabolic disease in adult offspring. Previously, we reported cardiovascular and physiological effects of maternal low protein diet (LPD) fed during discrete periods of periconceptional development on 6-month-old mouse offspring. Here, we extend the analysis in 1 year aging offspring, evaluating mechanisms regulating growth and adiposity. Isocaloric LPD (9% casein) or normal protein diet (18% casein; NPD) was fed to female MF-1 mice either exclusively during oocyte maturation (for 3.5 days prior to mating; Egg-LPD, Egg-NPD, respectively), throughout gestation (LPD, NPD) or exclusively during preimplantation development (for 3.5 days post mating; Emb-LPD). LPD and Emb-LPD female offspring were significantly lighter and heavier than NPD females respectively for up to 52 weeks. Egg-LPD, LPD and Emb-LPD offspring displayed significantly elevated systolic blood pressure at 52 weeks compared to respective controls (Egg-NPD, NPD). LPD females had significantly reduced inguinal and retroperitoneal fat pad: body weight ratios compared to NPD females. Expression of the insulin receptor (Insr) and insulin-like growth factor I receptor (Igf1r) in retroperitoneal fat was significantly elevated in Emb-LPD females (P&0.05), whilst Emb-LPD males displayed significantly decreased expression of the mitochondrial uncoupling protein 1 (Ucp1) gene compared to NPD offspring. LPD females displayed significantly increased expression of Ucp1 in interscapular brown adipose tissue when compared to NPD offspring. Our results demonstrate that aging offspring body weight, cardiovascular and adiposity homeostasis can be programmed by maternal periconceptional nutrition. These adverse outcomes further exemplify the criticality of dietary behaviour around the time of conception on long-term offspring health.
Bibliographical note© 2011 Watkins et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Watkins, A. J., Lucas, E. S., Wilkins, A., Cagampang, F. R. A., & Fleming, T. P. (2011). Maternal periconceptional and gestational low protein diet affects mouse offspring growth, cardiovascular and adipose phenotype at 1 year of age. PLoS ONE, 6(12), [e28745]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0028745