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J Agric Food Chem. 2014 Feb 19;62(7):1590-601. doi: 10.1021/jf405161e. Epub 2014 Feb 6.

Maternal fat supplementation during late pregnancy and lactation influences the development of hepatic steatosis in offspring depending on the fat source.

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Molecular Biology, Nutrition and Biotechnology (Nutrigenomics), University of the Balearic Islands (UIB) and Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Fisiopatología de la Obesidad y Nutrición (CIBERobn) , Carretera de Valldemossa Km 7.5, Palma de Mallorca 07122, Spain.


In this study we investigate the effects of maternal supplementation with different fat sources (margarine, olive oil, or butter) during pregnancy and lactation on offspring metabolic health in adulthood and under obesogenic conditions. In adulthood and under a high-fat (HF) diet, the margarine group showed lower body fat content than the butter group and was also protected against the increase in hepatic lipid content occurring in the other groups, whereas the butter group showed signs of more advanced hepatic steatosis. Under an HF diet, all fat-supplemented animals showed greater hepatic expression levels of fatty acid oxidation-related genes compared to their normal-fat diet counterparts, with higher levels in the margarine group. Under these conditions, the margarine group also showed higher white adipose tissue mRNA levels of adipogenic genes than the other fat-supplemented groups. Thus, compared to other fat sources, offspring from margarine-supplemented dams seem to be more protected from metabolic alterations related to the HF diet, particularly concerning hepatic fat accumulation.

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