Document Detail

Review: The placenta and developmental programming: balancing fetal nutrient demands with maternal resource allocation.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22154688     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The placenta evolved to support development of the fetus, and so potentially plays a key role in the aetiology of developmental programming through its impact on nutrient transfer. Placental transport efficiency depends on a variety of parameters, including surface area for exchange, thickness of the interhaemal membrane and density of transporter proteins inserted into the trophoblast membranes. Here, we review recent studies that tested whether adaptations of placental efficiency are induced in the mouse placenta when maternal nutrient supply and fetal demand are manipulated experimentally. Naturally small placentas, and those exposed to maternal undernutrition, displayed structural changes indicative of accelerated maturation at E16, with enlargement of the labyrinth exchange zone at the expense of the endocrine junctional zone. These changes were associated with increased transport of a non-metabolisable amino acid analogue per gram of placenta, and expression of genes encoding specific System A transporters. Up-regulation of transporters was also observed when a mismatch between placental size and fetal demand was generated through genetic manipulation of the Igf2/H19 axis. Conversely, overgrowth of the placenta induced by deletion of H19 resulted in reduced transport capacity and expression of transporter genes. We conclude that under conditions when the maternal nutrient supply or placental size may be limiting for normal fetal growth, the placenta adapts so as to increase its transport capacity. Hence, it ameliorates the effects of environmental cues that would otherwise lead to more extensive developmental programming. The P0 transcript of Igf2 appears to be a strong candidate as a mediator of these adaptations in the mouse.
G J Burton; A L Fowden
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Review     Date:  2011-12-10
Journal Detail:
Title:  Placenta     Volume:  33 Suppl     ISSN:  1532-3102     ISO Abbreviation:  Placenta     Publication Date:  2012 Feb 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-01-23     Completed Date:  2012-05-17     Revised Date:  2014-07-22    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8006349     Medline TA:  Placenta     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  S23-7     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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MeSH Terms
Fetal Development*
Malnutrition / physiopathology
Maternal Nutritional Physiological Phenomena*
Maternal-Fetal Exchange*
Nutritional Requirements
Placenta / physiology*,  physiopathology
Grant Support
BB/I011773/1//Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council; //Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council; //Medical Research Council

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