A mouse study led by Kristin Stanford, a physiology and cell biology researcher at Ohio State University College of Medicine at Wexner Medical Center, provides new ways to determine how maternal and paternal exercise improves metabolic health in offspring .
Laurie Goodyear of the Joslin Diabetes Center and Harvard Medical School co-led the study, published online in the journal Diabetes.
This study used mice to assess how their lifestyle—eating fatty foods versus healthy and exercising versus not—affected metabolites in their offspring.
Metabolites are substances made or used when the body breaks down foods, drugs or chemicals, or its own fat or muscle tissue. This process, called metabolism, produces energy and the materials necessary for growth, reproduction and the maintenance of health. Metabolites can serve as disease markers, especially for type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
“Tissue metabolites contribute to overall metabolism, including glucose or fatty acid metabolism, and thus to systemic metabolism. We have previously shown that maternal and paternal exercise improves offspring health. Tissue and serum metabolites play a fundamental role in the health of an organism, but how parental exercise affects offspring tissues and serum metabolites has not yet been studied.These new data contribute to how maternal or paternal exercise might improve offspring metabolism,” Stanford said.
Other studies have linked the development of type 2 diabetes and impaired metabolic health to poor parental nutrition. In this study, researchers investigated the beneficial effects of parental physical training in the presence of a high-fat diet on offspring metabolic health.
They used targeted metabolomics – the study of metabolites – to determine the impact of maternal exercise, paternal exercise and the combination of maternal and paternal exercise on the metabolite profile in the liver, muscle skeletal and blood serum levels of the offspring.
“We have long been interested in the role of parental exercise in improving metabolic health in offspring. These data are a next step in learning the mechanisms of how this works,” said Stanford, member of the Dorothy M. Davis Heart and Lung of Ohio State. Diabetes and Metabolism Research Institute and Center.
This study found that all forms of parental exercise improved offspring whole-body glucose metabolism in adulthood, and metabolomic profiling of offspring serum, muscle, and liver reveals that the Parental exercise results in widespread effects on all classes of metabolites in all of these offspring tissues. .
“Any insights into how these tissue metabolites might be regulated could help us understand how tissue metabolism works and provide ideas for benefiting or improving tissue metabolism of glucose or fatty acids. This could eventually lead to the development of new therapeutic tools or new targets to improve metabolism. said Goodyear.
Future studies will elucidate the specific role of exercise in mediating these metabolites and determine their role in improving offspring health, particularly in muscle and liver.
Funding from the National Institutes of Health supported this research.