I'm eating for two: parental dietary effects on offspring metabolism

Cell. 2015 Mar 26;161(1):93-105. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2015.02.021.


It has long been understood that the pathogenesis of complex diseases such as diabetes includes both genetic and environmental components. More recently, it has become clear that not only does an individual's environment influence their own metabolism, but in some cases, the environment experienced by their parents may also contribute to their risk of metabolic disease. Here, we review the evidence that parental diet influences metabolic phenotype in offspring in mammals and provide a current survey of our mechanistic understanding of these effects.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Epigenesis, Genetic*
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Female
  • Genomic Imprinting
  • Humans
  • Maternal-Fetal Exchange
  • Metabolic Diseases / genetics*
  • Metabolic Diseases / pathology
  • Nutritional Status
  • Pregnancy