• The association between TNF-α and insulin resistance in euglycemic women.

      Walsh, Jennifer M; McGowan, Ciara A; Byrne, Jacinta A; Rath, Ann; McAuliffe, Fionnuala M; UCD Obstetrics and Gynaecology, School of Medicine and Medical Science, University College Dublin, Ireland; National Maternity Hospital, Dublin, Ireland. Electronic address: msjenniferwalsh@gmail.com. (2013-10)
      Chronic low levels of inflammation have links to obesity, diabetes and insulin resistance. We sought to assess the relationship between cytokine tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α) and insulin resistance in a healthy, euglycemic population. This is a prospective study of 574 non-diabetic mother and infant pairs. Maternal body mass index (BMI), TNF-α, glucose and insulin were measured in early pregnancy and at 28 weeks. Insulin resistance was calculated by HOMA index. At delivery birthweight was recorded and cord blood analysed for fetal C-peptide and TNF-α. In a multivariate model, maternal TNF-α in early pregnancy was predicted by maternal insulin resistance at the same time-point, (β=0.54, p<0.01), and maternal TNF-α at 28 weeks was predicted by maternal insulin resistance in early pregnancy (β=0.24, p<0.01) and at 28 weeks (β=0.39, p<0.01). These results, in a large cohort of healthy, non-diabetic women have shown that insulin resistance, even at levels below those diagnostic of gestational diabetes, is associated with maternal and fetal inflammatory response. These findings have important implications for defining the pathways of fetal programming of later metabolic syndrome and childhood obesity.
    • Fetal metabolic influences of neonatal anthropometry and adiposity.

      Donnelly, Jean M; Lindsay, Karen L; Walsh, Jennifer M; Horan, Mary; Molloy, Eleanor J; McAuliffe, Fionnuala M (BioMed Central, 2015)
      Large for gestational age infants have an increased risk of obesity, cardiovascular and metabolic complications during life. Knowledge of the key predictive factors of neonatal adiposity is required to devise targeted antenatal interventions. Our objective was to determine the fetal metabolic factors that influence regional neonatal adiposity in a cohort of women with previous large for gestational age offspring.
    • Maternal Nutrition and Glycaemic Index during Pregnancy Impacts on Offspring Adiposity at 6 Months of Age--Analysis from the ROLO Randomised Controlled Trial.

      Horan, Mary K; McGowan, Ciara A; Gibney, Eileen R; Byrne, Jacinta; Donnelly, Jean M; McAuliffe, Fionnuala M (MDPI AG, 2016-01-04)
      Childhood obesity is associated with increased risk of adult obesity and metabolic disease. Diet and lifestyle in pregnancy influence fetal programming; however the influence of specific dietary components, including low glycaemic index (GI), remains complex. We examined the effect of a maternal low GI dietary intervention on offspring adiposity at 6 months and explored the association between diet and lifestyle factors in pregnancy and infant body composition at 6 months. 280 6-month old infant and mother pairs from the control (n = 142) and intervention group (n = 138), who received low GI dietary advice in pregnancy, in the ROLO study were analysed. Questionnaires (food diaries and lifestyle) were completed during pregnancy, followed by maternal lifestyle and infant feeding questionnaires at 6 months postpartum. Maternal anthropometry was measured throughout pregnancy and at 6 months post-delivery, along with infant anthropometry. No difference was found in 6 months infant adiposity between control and intervention groups. Maternal trimester three GI, trimester two saturated fats and trimester one and three sodium intake were positively associated with offspring adiposity, while trimester two and three vitamin C intake was negatively associated. In conclusion associations were observed between maternal dietary intake and GI during pregnancy and offspring adiposity at 6 months of age.
    • The molecular mechanisms of offspring effects from obese pregnancy.

      Dowling, Daniel; McAuliffe, Fionnuala M; UCD Obstetrics & Gynaecology, School of Medicine and Medical Science, University College Dublin, National Maternity Hospital, Dublin, Ireland. (2013)
      The incidence of obesity, increased weight gain and the popularity of high-fat / high-sugar diets are seriously impacting upon the global population. Billions of individuals are affected, and although diet and lifestyle are of paramount importance to the development of adult obesity, compelling evidence is emerging which suggests that maternal obesity and related disorders may be passed on to the next generation by non-genetic means. The processes acting within the uteri of obese mothers may permanently predispose offspring to a diverse plethora of diseases ranging from obesity and diabetes to psychiatric disorders. This review aims to summarise some of the molecular mechanisms and active processes currently known about maternal obesity and its effect on foetal and neonatal physiology and metabolism. Complex and multifactorial networks of molecules are intertwined and culminate in a pathologically synergistic manner to cause disruption and disorganisation of foetal physiology. This altered phenotype may potentiate the cycle of intergenerational transmission of obesity and related disorders.