Placenta expression of vitamin D and related genes in pregnant women with gestational diabetes mellitus

Yanyan Wang, Tian Wang, Yan Huo, Liu Li, Suxin Liu, Xiaoqian Yin, Runfang Wang, Xingshuang Gao
Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 2020 September 15, : 105754

OBJECTIVES AND METHODS: A total of 41 GDM and 40 normal glucose tolerance subjects were recruited. Through detecting the level of Serum vitamin D with electrochemical luminescence and vitamin D receptor (VDR) with Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) in maternal and cord blood, the expression leves of CYP24A1, CYP27B1, VDR protein and mRNA in placenta and umbilical cord with western blotting and RT-PCR, and the DNA methylation levels of CYP24A1 and CYP27B1 gene in placenta with methylation-specific PCR (MSP) and direct bisulfite sequencing (BSP) analysis to explore the potential role of the vitamin D and its related genes in gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM).

RESULTS: Serum vitamin D concentrations were significantly higher in normal pregnant than women with GDM in maternal blood (P < 0.01) and cord blood (P = 0.014). Compared to the control group, the expression levels of CYP24A1 protein (P < 0.01) and mRNA (P = 0.021) and VDR protein (P = 0.026) and mRNA (P = 0.023) in the GDM group were significantly higher in placenta and umbilical cord tissues (P = 0.015, P < 0.01, P = 0.028, P < 0.01, respectively), while that of CYP27B1 protein (P < 0.01) and mRNA (P = 0.042) was significantly lower (P = 0.022, P = 0.032, respectively). Moreover, partial DNA methylation of CYP24A1 and CYP27B1 genes was observed in both GDM and control groups.

CONCLUSIONS: Vitamin D deficiency participates in the pathogenesis of GDM, and changes in the expression of genes related to the vitamin D metabolic pathway are closely related to vitamin D levels in the pregnancy and fetus. However, DNA methylation of CYP24A1 and CYP27B1 might not be involved in the pathogenesis of GDM.

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