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17.10.2016 | Original Contribution | Ausgabe 2/2018

European Journal of Nutrition 2/2018

Methylglyoxal treatment in lactating mothers leads to type 2 diabetes phenotype in male rat offspring at adulthood

European Journal of Nutrition > Ausgabe 2/2018
Flávio Andrade Francisco, Luiz Felipe Barella, Sandra da Silva Silveira, Lucas Paulo Jacinto Saavedra, Kelly Valério Prates, Vander Silva Alves, Claudinéia Conationi da Silva Franco, Rosiane Aparecida Miranda, Tatiane Aparecida Ribeiro, Laize Peron Tófolo, Ananda Malta, Elaine Vieira, Kesia Palma-Rigo, Audrei Pavanello, Isabela Peixoto Martins, Veridiana Mota Moreira, Júlio Cezar de Oliveira, Paulo Cezar de Freitas Mathias, Rodrigo Mello Gomes
Wichtige Hinweise
Paulo Cezar de Freitas Mathias and Rodrigo Mello Gomes have contributed equally to this work.



Environmental and nutritional disorders during perinatal period cause metabolic dysfunction in the progeny and impair human health. Advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are primarily produced during metabolism of excess blood glucose, which is observed in diabetes. Methylglyoxal (MG) is a precursor for the generation of endogenous AGEs, which disturbs the metabolism. This work aimed to investigate whether the maternal MG treatment during lactation programs the progeny to metabolic dysfunction later in life.


Female Wistar rats were divided into two groups: control group (C) treated with saline and MG group treated with MG (60 mg/kg/day) by gavage throughout the lactation period. Both mothers and offspring were fed a standard chow. At weaning, breast milk composition was analyzed and mothers euthanized for blood and tissue sample collections. At 90 days of age, offspring were submitted to glucose tolerance test (ivGTT) and euthanized for blood and tissue samples collection.


MG mothers showed increase in glucose and fructosamine levels; however, they showed low insulin levels and failure in β-cell function (p < 0.05). MG mothers also showed dyslipidemia (p < 0.05). Moreover, breast milk had elevated levels of glucose, triglycerides, cholesterol and fructosamine and low insulin (p < 0.05). Interestingly, MG offspring had increased body weight and adipose tissue at adulthood, and they also showed glucose intolerance and failure in β-cell function (p < 0.05). Besides, MG offspring showed dyslipidemia (p < 0.05) increasing cardiovascular diseases risk.


Maternal MG treatment negatively affects the male rat offspring, leading to type 2 diabetes and dyslipidemia in later life, possibly by changes in breast milk composition.

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