JOURNAL ARTICLE

Prenatal caffeine ingestion induces transgenerational neuroendocrine metabolic programming alteration in second generation rats

Hanwen Luo, Zixin Deng, Lian Liu, Lang Shen, Hao Kou, Zheng He, Jie Ping, Dan Xu, Lu Ma, Liaobin Chen, Hui Wang
Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology 2014 February 1, 274 (3): 383-92
24321341
Our previous studies have demonstrated that prenatal caffeine ingestion induces an increased susceptibility to metabolic syndrome with alterations of glucose and lipid metabolic phenotypes in adult first generation (F1) of intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) rats, and the underlying mechanism is originated from a hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis-associated neuroendocrine metabolic programming alteration in utero. This study aims to investigate the transgenerational effects of this programming alteration in adult second generation (F2). Pregnant Wistar rats were administered with caffeine (120mg/kg·d) from gestational day 11 until delivery. Four groups in F2 were set according to the cross-mating between control and caffeine-induced IUGR rats. F2 were subjected to a fortnight ice water swimming stimulus on postnatal month 4, and blood samples were collected before and after stress. Results showed that the majority of the activities of HPA axis and phenotypes of glucose and lipid metabolism were altered in F2. Particularly, comparing with the control group, caffeine groups had an enhanced corticosterone levels after chronic stress. Compared with before stress, the serum glucose levels were increased in some groups whereas the triglyceride levels were decreased. Furthermore, total cholesterol gain rates were enhanced but the high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol gain rates were decreased in most caffeine groups after stress. These transgenerational effects were characterized partially with gender and parental differences. Taken together, these results indicate that the reproductive and developmental toxicities and the neuroendocrine metabolic programming mechanism by prenatal caffeine ingestion have transgenerational effects in rats, which may help to explain the susceptibility to metabolic syndrome and associated diseases in F2.

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