Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Contents:

Information:

  • Access

Actions:

      • Send article to Kindle

        To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

        Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

        Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

        Maternal protein supplementation differentially promotes uncoupling protein 1 expression in the fetus that is dependent on the time of gestation
        Available formats
        ×

        Send article to Dropbox

        To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

        Maternal protein supplementation differentially promotes uncoupling protein 1 expression in the fetus that is dependent on the time of gestation
        Available formats
        ×

        Send article to Google Drive

        To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

        Maternal protein supplementation differentially promotes uncoupling protein 1 expression in the fetus that is dependent on the time of gestation
        Available formats
        ×
Export citation

Maternal nutrient restriction during critical stages of gestation (e.g. mid-gestation, coincident with maximal placental growth) compromises fetal growth and development( Footnote 1 ). However, late gestational protein supplementation in twin-bearing pregnancies improves lamb vigour, immune competence and colostrum production( Footnote 2 ). The extent to which nutritional supplementation of the mother with protein in the form of fishmeal can promote expression of the thermogenic brown adipose tissue-specific uncoupling protein (UCP) 1 is unknown. Thus, the present study aimed to determine whether protein supplementation of the maternal diet at defined stages of gestation promotes the fetal growth or the regulation of mitochondrial protein abundance in brown adipose tissue.

Twenty-eight twin-bearing sheep of similar body weight and parity were randomly allocated into four feeding groups from 10 d of gestation. Each animal was fed a standard control diet, which was supplemented with fishmeal (66% (w/w) crude protein plus an equal amount of molasses to aid palatability) and fed to each of the three treatment groups during early (10–40 d; n 7), mid- (40–70 d; n 7) or late (110 d; n 7) gestation. Each mother was then humanely killed with an overdose of barbiturate (100 mg pentobarbital sodium/kg; Euthanal) at 140 d of gestation to enable fetal tissue sampling. mRNA and protein abundances were determined using fully-validated real-time RT–PCR techniques and antibodies respectively. Results, in arbitrary units (au), are expressed as a percentage of a reference sample present on all quantitative PCR plates and SDS–PAGE gels. Significant differences in relation to nutritional supplementation were determined by GLM analysis.

Protein supplementation had no effect on fetal body, placental or organ weights. UCP1 expression of the protein (but not mRNA) was increased in offspring supplemented during mid-gestation (control 79 (se 10) au v. 126 (se 140 au; P<0.05) despite a reduction in total mitochondrial protein. UCP2, PPARγ, PPARγ co-activator-1a (PGC-1a), glucocorticoid receptor (GR), 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (11β HSD)-1 and -2, β-adrenergic receptor 3 (β-AR 3) and AMP-activated protein kinase α2 (AMPK α2) mRNA levels were all unaffected by fishmeal supplementation.

Increased UCP1 expression with protein supplementation specifically during mid-gestation is likely to improve thermogenesis in the newborn. However, this adaptation appears unrelated to sympathetic activation or glucocorticoid stimulation and is, therefore, likely to be mediated by translational modification and/or stabilisation of UCP1.

1. Heasman, L, Clarke, L, Stephenson, TJ & Symonds, ME (1999) Proc Nutr Soc 58, 283–288.

2. Robinson, JJ, Sinclair, KD & McEvoy, TG (1999) Anim Sci 68, 315331.