Lower maternal body condition during pregnancy affects skeletal muscle structure and glut-4 protein levels but not glucose tolerance in mature adult sheep

Reprod Sci. 2013 Oct;20(10):1144-55. doi: 10.1177/1933719113477494. Epub 2013 Feb 18.

Abstract

Suboptimal maternal nutrition and body composition are implicated in metabolic disease risk in adult offspring. We hypothesized that modest disruption of glucose homeostasis previously observed in young adult sheep offspring from ewes of a lower body condition score (BCS) would deteriorate with age, due to changes in skeletal muscle structure and insulin signaling mechanisms. Ewes were fed to achieve a lower (LBCS, n = 10) or higher (HBCS, n = 14) BCS before and during pregnancy. Baseline plasma glucose, glucose tolerance and basal glucose uptake into isolated muscle strips were similar in male offspring at 210 ± 4 weeks. Vastus total myofiber density (HBCS, 343 ± 15; LBCS, 294 ± 14 fibers/mm(2), P < .05) and fast myofiber density (HBCS, 226 ± 10; LBCS 194 ± 10 fibers/mm(2), P < .05), capillary to myofiber ratio (HBCS, 1.5 ± 0.1; LBCS 1.2 ± 0.1 capillary:myofiber, P < .05) were lower in LBCS offspring. Vastus protein levels of Akt1 were lower (83% ± 7% of HBCS, P < .05), and total glucose transporter 4 was increased (157% ± 6% of HBCS, P < .001) in LBCS offspring, Despite the reduction in total myofiber density in LBCS offspring, glucose tolerance was normal in mature adult life. However, such adaptations may lead to complications in metabolic control in an overabundant postnatal nutrient environment.

Keywords: glucose uptake; maternal body condition; myofibers; skeletal muscle; type 2 diabetes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Animals
  • Body Composition / physiology*
  • Female
  • Glucose / metabolism*
  • Glucose Tolerance Test / methods
  • Glucose Transporter Type 4 / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Muscle, Skeletal / metabolism*
  • Organ Culture Techniques
  • Pregnancy / metabolism*
  • Sheep
  • Up-Regulation / physiology

Substances

  • Glucose Transporter Type 4
  • Glucose