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Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2016;56(1):82-91. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2012.745477.

Pregnancy and Infants' Outcome: Nutritional and Metabolic Implications.

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a Unit of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences, Hospital 'L. Sacco', and Center for Fetal Research Giorgio Pardi , University of Milan , Milan , Italy.
b Department of Clinical Sciences and Community Health, University of Milan, Fondazione IRCCS Cà Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico , Milan , Italy.
c Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology , Medical University of Graz , Graz , Austria.
d Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology , University Hospitals K.U. Leuven , Leuven , Belgium.
e Centre for Child & Adolescent Health, School of Social & Community Medicine , University of Bristol , Bristol , United Kingdom.
f Research Center, Dr. von Hauner Children's Hospital, Klinikum der Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München , Munich , Germany.
g Else Kroener-Fresenius-Centre for Nutritional Medicine, Klinikum rechts der Isar , Technical University of Munich , Munich , Germany.
h Unit of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Universidad San Pablo CEU , Madrid , Spain.
i Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology , University Hospital of Basel , Basel , Switzerland.
j Comprehensive Pneumology Center, Ludwig Maximilians University Hospital , Munich , Germany.
k Helmholtz Zentrum München , Munich , Germany.
l Centre for Fetal Programming, Statens Serum Institut , Copenhagen , Denmark.
m Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology , Berlin Center for Diabetes & Pregnancy, St. Joseph Hospital , Berlin , Germany.
n Fetal Maternal Unit, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology , University of Munich , Munich , Germany.
o The Early Life Nutrition Research Unit, Academic Child Health, School of Clinical Sciences, University Hospital of Nottingham , Nottingham , United Kingdom.
p Dr. von Hauner Children's Hospital , University of Munich Medical Centre , Munich , Germany.


Pregnancy is a complex period of human growth, development, and imprinting. Nutrition and metabolism play a crucial role for the health and well-being of both mother and fetus, as well as for the long-term health of the offspring. Nevertheless, several biological and physiological mechanisms related to nutritive requirements together with their transfer and utilization across the placenta are still poorly understood. In February 2009, the Child Health Foundation invited leading experts of this field to a workshop to critically review and discuss current knowledge, with the aim to highlight priorities for future research. This paper summarizes our main conclusions with regards to maternal preconceptional body mass index, gestational weight gain, placental and fetal requirements in relation to adverse pregnancy and long-term outcomes of the fetus (nutritional programming). We conclude that there is an urgent need to develop further human investigations aimed at better understanding of the basis of biochemical mechanisms and pathophysiological events related to maternal-fetal nutrition and offspring health. An improved knowledge would help to optimize nutritional recommendations for pregnancy.


Fetal nutrition; fatty acids; maternal body mass index; maternal diabetes; placental transport

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