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Mol Nutr Food Res. 2020 Feb 28:e1901178. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201901178. [Epub ahead of print]

Maternal Choline Intake Programs Hypothalamic Energy Regulation and Later-Life Phenotype of Male Wistar Rat Offspring.

Author information

1
Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Toronto, 1 King's College Circle, Rm. 5360, Toronto, Ontario, M5S1A8, Canada.
2
Division of Nutritional Sciences, Cornell University, 228 Savage Hall, Ithaca, NY, 14850, USA.
3
Department of Physiology, University of Toronto, 1 King's College Circle, Rm. 5360, Toronto, Ontario, M5S1A8, Canada.
4
Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning, Hospital for Sick Children, 686 Bay Street, Rm. 109705, Toronto, Ontario, M5G0A4, Canada.

Abstract

SCOPE:

High-folic-acid diets during pregnancy result in obesity in the offspring, associated with altered DNA-methylation of hypothalamic food intake neurons. Like folic acid, the methyl-donor choline modulates foetal brain development, but its long-term programing effects on energy regulation remain undefined. This study aims to describe the effect of choline intake during pregnancy on offspring phenotype and hypothalamic energy-regulatory mechanisms.

METHODS AND RESULTS:

Wistar rat dams are fed an AIN-93G diet with recommended choline (RC, 1 g kg-1 diet), low choline (LC, 0.5-fold), or high choline (HC, 2.5-fold) during pregnancy. Male pups are terminated at birth and 17 weeks post-weaning. Brain 1-carbon metabolites, body weight, food intake, energy expenditure, plasma hormones, and protein expression of hypothalamic neuropeptides are measured. HC pups have higher expression of the orexigenic neuropeptide-Y neurons at birth, consistent with higher cumulative food intake and body weight gain post-weaning compared to RC and LC offspring. LC pups have lower leptin receptor expression at birth and lower energy expenditure and activity during adulthood.

CONCLUSION:

Choline content of diets that are consumed by rats during pregnancy affects the later-life phenotype of offspring, associated with altered in utero programing of hypothalamic food intake regulation.

KEYWORDS:

choline; fetal programing; food intake regulation; hypothalamus; obesity; pregnancy

PMID:
32110848
DOI:
10.1002/mnfr.201901178

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