Located at the feto-maternal interface, the placenta is involved in exchange, endocrine and immune functions, which impact fetal development. In contact with the maternal environment, this organ is sensitive to metabolic disorders as over-nutrition, obesity or diabetes. The alteration of blood parameters associated with these pathologies affects placental histology, vascularization and nutrient transfers and, according to the types of troubles, induces local inflammation or hypoxia. These placental changes lead to disturbance of development and fetal growth, which increase the risk of pathologies in offspring in adulthood. The placenta thus appears as a crucial player in the fetal programming.
© 2016 médecine/sciences – Inserm.