Effects of maternal feed intake restriction during pregnancy on the expression of growth regulation, imprinting and epigenetic transcription-related genes in foetal goats

Citation

Li, X., Yan, Q., Tang, S., Tan, Z., Fitzsimmons, C.J., Yi, K. (2018). Effects of maternal feed intake restriction during pregnancy on the expression of growth regulation, imprinting and epigenetic transcription-related genes in foetal goats, 198 90-98. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.anireprosci.2018.09.005

Plain language summary

In mammals, maternal nutrition during gestation has a significant impact on the foetal epigenome. The epigenome consists of all the changes to the expression of genes and the characteristics or traits of an individual that can be passed down to one’s offspring, without any changes to the sequences of the gene themselves. This includes changes such as DNA methylation and genomic imprinting. Imprinting genes have important roles in regulating the growth, programming and development of the fetus. There, however, are limited data available on the effects of feed intake restriction on the expression of imprinting genes in pregnant goats. The present study, therefore, was conducted to assess the effects of maternal feed intake restriction on the relative abundance of mRNA for growth imprinting, DNA methyltransferase and epigenetic transcription-related genes in the liver and heart of foetal goats during gestation. Twenty-four pregnant goats were split into 2 groups and fed either a control diet (CG) or a restriction diet (RG), which was 40% less than that of the CG, during both early and late gestation. In early gestation, the weight of the fetus, body length, and the weight of foetal heart and liver were greater in the RG, DNA methylation in the foetal heart was less in the RG, and the relative abundance of mRNA of methyl-CpG-binding domain protein 2 (MBD2) and methyl-CpG-binding domain protein 3 (MBD3) genes in the foetal liver were greater in the RG. During late gestation, the foetal weight, heart weight and liver weight were less in the RG. The relative abundance of mRNA for the MBD2 gene in the foetal heart, and the ten-eleven translocation protein 1 gene in both the foetal heart and liver were greater in the RG. These results indicate feed intake restriction during gestation influenced the development and regulation of the relative abundance of mRNA for epigenetic transcription-related genes in the fetus.

Abstract

© 2018 Elsevier B.V.Maternal nutrition during gestation is a leading factor of modifying the foetal epigenome and phenotype for mammals. Imprinting genes have important roles in regulating foetal growth, programming and development. There, however, are limited data available on the effects of feed intake restriction on the expression of imprinting genes in pregnant goats. The present study, therefore, was conducted to assess the effects of maternal feed intake restriction on the relative abundance of mRNA for growth imprinting, DNA methyltransferase (DNMT) and epigenetic transcription-related genes in the liver and heart of foetal goats during gestation. A total of 24 Liuyang black goats (2.0±0.3 yr) with similar body weight (BW, 31.22±8.09 kg) and parity (2) were allocated equally to either a control group (CG) or a restriction group (RG) during both early (from 26 to 65 days) and late (from 96 to 135 days) gestation. All goats were fed a mixed diet and had free access to fresh water. The feed of the RG was 40% less than that of the CG. The early and late gestation goats were weighed, bled and slaughtered on days 65 and 135 of gestation, respectively. In early gestation, the foetal weight, body length, the weight of foetal heart and liver were greater (P < 0.05) in the RG. The CpG methylation of genomic DNA in the foetal heart was less (P = 0.0001) in the RG. The relative abundance of mRNA of methyl-CpG-binding domain protein 2 (MBD2) and methyl-CpG-binding domain protein 3 (MBD3) genes in the foetal liver were greater (P < 0.05) in the RG. During the late gestation, the foetal weight, heart weight and liver weight were less (P < 0.05) in the RG. The relative abundance of mRNA for the MBD2 gene (P = 0.043) in the foetal heart, and the ten-eleven translocation protein 1 (TET1) gene (P < 0.05) in both the foetal heart and liver were greater in the RG. These results indicate feed intake restriction during gestation influenced foetal development and regulated the relative abundance of mRNA for epigenetic transcription-related genes.

Publication date

2018-11-01

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