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Maternal obesity increases the risk of metabolic dysregulation in rodent offspring, especially when offspring are exposed to a high-fat (HF), obesogenic diet later in life. We previously demonstrated that maternal choline supplementation (MCS) in HF-fed mouse dams during gestation prevents fetal overgrowth and excess adiposity. In this study, we examined the long-term metabolic influence of MCS. C57BL/6J mice were fed a HF diet with or without choline supplementation prior to and during gestation. After weaning, their pups were exposed to either a HF or control diet for 6 weeks before measurements. Prenatal and post-weaning dietary treatments led to sexually dimorphic responses. In male offspring, while post-weaning HF led to impaired fasting glucose and worse glucose tolerance (p < 0.05), MCS in HF dams (HFCS) attenuated these changes. HFCS (versus maternal normal fat control) appeared to improve metabolic functioning of visceral adipose tissue during post-weaning HF feeding, preventing the elevation in leptin and increasing (p < 0.05) mRNA expression of insulin receptor substrate 1 (Irs1) that promotes peripheral insulin signaling in male offspring. In contrast, MCS had minimal effects on metabolic outcomes of female offspring. In conclusion, MCS during HF feeding in mice improves long-term blood glucose homeostasis in male offspring when they are faced with a postnatal obesogenic environment.


This article was originally published in Nutrients, available at doi:10.3390/nu12010144.

This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (



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