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Open AccessArticle

Ontogeny of Sex-Related Differences in Foetal Developmental Features, Lipid Availability and Fatty Acid Composition

Subdirección General de Investigación y Tecnología, Instituto Nacional de Investigación y TecnologíaAgraria y Alimentaria, Madrid 28040, Spain
Faculty of Veterinary Sciences, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Madrid 28040, Spain
Micros Veterinaria, Leon 24007, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marica Bakovic
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(6), 1171;
Received: 13 February 2017 / Revised: 5 May 2017 / Accepted: 25 May 2017 / Published: 31 May 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrigenomics of Risk Factors for Disease)
Sex-related differences in lipid availability and fatty acid composition during swine foetal development were investigated. Plasma cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations in the mother were strongly related to the adequacy or inadequacy of foetal development and concomitant activation of protective growth in some organs (brain, heart, liver and spleen). Cholesterol and triglyceride availability was similar in male and female offspring, but female foetuses showed evidence of higher placental transfer of essential fatty acids and synthesis of non-essential fatty acids in muscle and liver. These sex-related differences affected primarily the neutral lipid fraction (triglycerides), which may lead to sex-related postnatal differences in energy partitioning. These results illustrate the strong influence of the maternal lipid profile on foetal development and homeorhesis, and they confirm and extend previous reports that female offspring show better adaptive responses to maternal malnutrition than male offspring. These findings may help guide dietary interventions to ensure adequate fatty acid availability for postnatal development. View Full-Text
Keywords: fatty-acids; foetus; lipids; metabolism; nutrition; sex fatty-acids; foetus; lipids; metabolism; nutrition; sex
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Garcia-Contreras, C.; Vazquez-Gomez, M.; Astiz, S.; Torres-Rovira, L.; Sanchez-Sanchez, R.; Gomez-Fidalgo, E.; Gonzalez, J.; Isabel, B.; Rey, A.; Ovilo, C.; Gonzalez-Bulnes, A. Ontogeny of Sex-Related Differences in Foetal Developmental Features, Lipid Availability and Fatty Acid Composition. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18, 1171.

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