Maternal dietary intake of essential fatty acids affects adipose tissue growth and leptin mRNA expression in suckling rat pups
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2002
We have previously shown that maternal intake of essential fatty acids during late gestation and lactation affects the level of serum leptin in pups. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of dietary essential fatty acids on leptin content in the milk of rat dams and leptin expression in white adipose tissue of pups during the suckling period. During late gestation and throughout lactation, rats were fed a control or an essential fatty acid-deficient (EFAD) diet. Milk of the EFAD dams contained more saturated and less polyunsaturated fatty acids compared with the control dams. Milk leptin levels were higher in the EFAD dams than in the control dams at 3 wk of lactation. The weight of inguinal white adipose tissue depots and the serum leptin levels of the EFAD pups were significantly lower than in the control pups during the whole suckling period. In addition, semiquantitative reverse transcriptase-PCR analysis of leptin mRNA levels in inguinal white adipose tissue showed a reduction in the EFAD pups compared with the control pups at 3 wk of age. We conclude that maternal dietary essential fatty acid intake affects serum leptin levels in pups by regulating both the amount of adipose tissue and the leptin mRNA expression.