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Mol Nutr Food Res. 2015 Jan;59(1):180-4. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201400396. Epub 2014 Nov 14.

Increased risk of insulin resistance in rat offsprings exposed prenatally to white rice.

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Laboratory of Molecular Biomedicine, Institute of Bioscience, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia.


White rice (WR) is a major staple food for people in developing countries and it may be responsible for the growing incidence of type 2 diabetes. Nonpregnant Female Sprague Dawley rats fed with WR or brown rice (BR) for 8 weeks were mated with age-matched male rats maintained on normal pellet over the same period. Offsprings were fed normal pellet after weaning until 8 weeks postdelivery. Rats fed with WR and their offsprings showed worsened oral glucose tolerance test, lower serum adiponectin levels, and higher weights, homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance, serum retinol binding protein-4 levels, and leptin levels, compared with the normal and BR groups, suggesting an increased risk of insulin resistance. Furthermore, transcriptional levels of genes involved in insulin signaling showed different expression patterns in the liver, muscle, and adipose tissues of mothers and offsprings in both WR and BR groups. The results propose that the cycle of WR-induced insulin resistance in offsprings due to prenatal exposure, followed by their consumption of WR later in life may contribute to diabetes incidents. These findings are worth studying further.


Brown rice; Diabetes; Epigenetics; Insulin resistance; White rice

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