Impact of excess gestational and post-weaning energy intake on vascular function of swine offspring

Pardis Taheripour, Mark A. DeFord, Emily J. Arentson-Lantz, Shawn S. Donkin, Kolapo M. Ajuwon, Sean C. Newcomer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: The development of long-term vascular disease can be linked to the intrauterine environment, and maternal nutrition during gestation plays a critical role in the future vascular health of offspring. The purpose of this investigation was to test the hypothesis that a high-energy (HE) gestational diet, HE post-weaning diet, or their combination will lead to endothelial dysfunction in offspring. Methods: Duroc × Landrace gilts (n = 16) were assigned to either a HE (10,144 Kcal/day, n = 8) or normal energy (NE: 6721 Kcal/day, n = 8) diet throughout pregnancy. Piglets were placed on either a NE or HE diet during the growth phase. At 3 months of age femoral arteries were harvested from offspring (n = 47). Endothelial-dependent and -independent vasorelaxation was measured utilizing wire-myography and increasing concentrations of bradykinin (BK) and sodium nitroprusside (SNP), respectively. Results: BK and SNP induced vasorelaxation were significantly reduced in the femoral arteries of gestational HE offspring. However, no effect for the post-weaning diet on BK and SNP induced vasorelaxation was seen. This investigation demonstrates that a HE diet prenatally diminishes both BK and SNP induced vasorelaxation in swine. Conclusions: These findings suggest that a HE gestational diet can play a critical role in the development of offspring's vascular function, predisposing them to endothelial dysfunction. This dysfunction may lead to atherosclerotic disease development later in life.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number405
JournalBMC Pregnancy and Childbirth
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 12 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Atherosclerosis
  • Fetal programming
  • Gestational diet
  • High-energy diet
  • Postnatal diet

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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