Olatunji Anthony Akerele - March 11, 2019

Omega-3 fatty acids maintains maternal metabolic profile and fetal sustainability in C57BL/6 mice

Successful pregnancy relies on carefully regulated metabolic adaptations. Dyslipidemia, as well as disrupted balance of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines during pregnancy are known to elicit adverse pregnancy outcomes. Omega (n)-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) are important regulators of lipid metabolism and inflammation. However, there is paucity of evidence on the effect of diets differing in the amount of n-3 PUFA on maternal lipids profile and cytokines at different stages of pregnancy, and its influence on pregnancy outcomes. We investigated the effects of semi-purified maternal diets (20% w/w fat) containing recommended (9%), low (3%) or very-low (1%) n-3 PUFA (n-6:n-3 of 5:1, 20:1 and 40:1, respectively) on maternal metabolic profile during different stages of pregnancy and its impact on pregnancy sustainability using C57BL/6 mice. We also investigated the mechanisms through which maternal diet containing varying amounts of n-3 PUFA during pregnancy impact fetal development through cytokines regulation, and the propensity through which n-3 PUFA facilitate positive materno-fetal outcomes. Our findings show that a maternal diet containing recommended amount of n-3 PUFA maintained optimum lipids levels at different stages of pregnancy. The diet containing recommended n-3 PUFA also increased the incorporation of longer chain n-3 PUFA into maternal placenta and fetal brain to support fetal development during pregnancy. In contrast, the low and very-low n-3 PUFA diet increased lipogenesis to cause dyslipidemia, as well as increased the concentration of pro-inflammatory cytokines in maternal placenta; these coincided with an increase in the number of resorption sites at mid- and late-gestation. Our findings demonstrate that consuming the recommended amount of n-3 PUFA during pregnancy maintains maternal metabolic profile, with a concomitant positive influence on fetal sustainability.

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