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Article

Alteration of the Early Development Environment by Maternal Diet and the Occurrence of Autistic-like Phenotypes in Rat Offspring

1
Department of Drug Addiction Pharmacology, Maj Institute of Pharmacology Polish Academy of Sciences, Smętna Street 12, 31-343 Kraków, Poland
2
Institute of Human Genetics, Polish Academy of Sciences, Strzeszyńska 32, 60-479 Poznań, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Nicoleta Andreescu, Atanas G. Atanasov and Barbara Benassi
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(18), 9662; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms22189662
Received: 27 July 2021 / Revised: 30 August 2021 / Accepted: 3 September 2021 / Published: 7 September 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research on Nutrigenetics and Nutrigenomics)
Epidemiological and preclinical studies suggest that maternal obesity increases the risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in offspring. Here, we assessed the effects of exposure to modified maternal diets limited to pregnancy and lactation on brain development and behavior in rat offspring of both sexes. Among the studied diets, a maternal high-fat diet (HFD) disturbed the expression of ASD-related genes (Cacna1d, Nlgn3, and Shank1) and proteins (SHANK1 and TAOK2) in the prefrontal cortex of male offspring during adolescence. In addition, a maternal high-fat diet induced epigenetic changes by increasing cortical global DNA methylation and the expression of miR-423 and miR-494. As well as the molecular changes, behavioral studies have shown male-specific disturbances in social interaction and an increase in repetitive behavior during adolescence. Most of the observed changes disappeared in adulthood. In conclusion, we demonstrated the contribution of a maternal HFD to the predisposition to an ASD-like phenotype in male adolescent offspring, while a protective effect occurred in females. View Full-Text
Keywords: autism spectrum disorder; ASD; epigenetics; high-fat diet; HFD; maternal diet; prefrontal cortex; pregnancy and lactation; offspring behaviors autism spectrum disorder; ASD; epigenetics; high-fat diet; HFD; maternal diet; prefrontal cortex; pregnancy and lactation; offspring behaviors
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MDPI and ACS Style

Gawlińska, K.; Gawliński, D.; Kowal-Wiśniewska, E.; Jarmuż-Szymczak, M.; Filip, M. Alteration of the Early Development Environment by Maternal Diet and the Occurrence of Autistic-like Phenotypes in Rat Offspring. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22, 9662. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms22189662

AMA Style

Gawlińska K, Gawliński D, Kowal-Wiśniewska E, Jarmuż-Szymczak M, Filip M. Alteration of the Early Development Environment by Maternal Diet and the Occurrence of Autistic-like Phenotypes in Rat Offspring. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2021; 22(18):9662. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms22189662

Chicago/Turabian Style

Gawlińska, Kinga, Dawid Gawliński, Ewelina Kowal-Wiśniewska, Małgorzata Jarmuż-Szymczak, and Małgorzata Filip. 2021. "Alteration of the Early Development Environment by Maternal Diet and the Occurrence of Autistic-like Phenotypes in Rat Offspring" International Journal of Molecular Sciences 22, no. 18: 9662. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms22189662

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