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Maternal betaine supplementation attenuates glucocorticoid-induced hepatic lipid accumulation through epigenetic modification in adult offspring rats

Zhao, Nannan, Yang, Shu, Jia, Yimin, Sun, Bo, He, Bin, Zhao, Ruqian
The Journal of nutritional biochemistry 2018 v.54 pp. 105-112
DNA methylation, adults, betaine, dexamethasone, diet, epigenetics, fatty liver, females, genes, intraperitoneal injection, progeny, rats, triacylglycerols
There are lots of reports about alleviation of NAFLD by dietary supplements of betaine. However, it remains unclear whether maternal betaine supplementation can also ameliorate NAFLD in offspring. Hence, twenty pregnant rats were fed with a basal diet with or without betaine (1%), and then the female offspring rats were raised at 3 months of age followed by 3 weeks of physiological saline or dexamethasone in a dose of 0.1 mg/kg body mass every day via intraperitoneal injection. In this study, maternal betaine supplementation significantly (P<.05) reduced the increase of hepatic triglycerides concentration in dexamethasone-induced rats, which is associated with the expression of hepatic lipogenic genes (ACC1, FASN and SCD1). Moreover, the hypomethylation of lipogenic genes in dexamethasone-induced rats were reserved by prenatal betaine exposure. Furthermore, the increase of hepatic GR or SP1 content in dexamethasone-injected rats were significantly decreased (P<.05), which were in line with the binding of GR or SP1 to lipogenic genes, in betaine -exposed rats. Together, these results suggest that maternal betaine supplementation attenuates dexamethason-induced fatty liver in the female adult offspring rats, which may be attributed to DNA methylation and GR or SP1-mediated the regulation of lipogenic genes.