A prenatal trigger for postnatal obesity

During pregnancy, the health of the mother and the intrauterine environment can have dramatic and lasting effects on the child. Intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP) is a liver disease that affects 0.5-2% of pregnant women and is characterized by increased bile acid levels in the maternal serum.

In this issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Catherine Williamson and colleagues at Imperial College London studied the long term impact of ICP in a cohort of Finnish families.

They found that as teenagers, individuals born to women with ICP had altered metabolic profiles and increased BMI. To further understand this effect, Williams and colleagues developed a mouse model of ICP and found that offspring of ICP mothers were more susceptible to metabolic disease and diet-induced obesity.

In the companion commentary, Susan Murphy of Duke University points out that the mouse model of ICP may also be useful in identifying other factors that predispose individuals to metabolic syndrome.

More information: Cholestatic pregnancy programmes metabolic disease in the offspring, J Clin Invest. 2013;123(7):3172–3181. doi:10.1172/JCI68927

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New marker for raised intracranial pressure

Sep 11, 2008

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) measurements of the thickness of the optic nerve sheath are a good marker for raised intracranial pressure (ICP). New research published today in BioMed Central's open access journal Critical Ca ...

Inflammation may link obesity and adverse pregnancy outcomes

Jan 10, 2012

A number of different immunological mechanisms ensure the successful establishment and maintenance of pregnancy. Imbalance in these mechanisms is associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes. In a review published in Advances in ...

Recommended for you

Abdominal obesity ups risk of hip fracture

50 minutes ago

(HealthDay)—Abdominal obesity is associated with increased risk of hip fracture, according to a study published in the March issue of the Journal of Internal Medicine.

Does traffic noise increase the risk of obesity?

1 hour ago

There is an association between road traffic noise and the risk of obesity among people who are particularly sensitive to noise, according to a study from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

Impact of a supermarket on children's diets

23 hours ago

Locating full-service supermarkets within neighborhoods considered to be "food deserts" may not result in healthful dietary habits or reductions in childhood obesity—at least in the short term, according to a new study ...

Seeking solutions for the impact of obesity stigma

Feb 26, 2015

Arizona State University medical anthropologist and President's Professor Alexandra Brewis Slade says that even as more and more Americans find themselves carrying extra weight, the stigma attached to being ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.