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Marchioro, Linda; Geraghty, Aisling A.; Uhl, Olaf; Shokry, Engy; O’Brien, Eileen C.; Koletzko, Berthold and McAuliffe, Fionnuala M. (2019): Effect of a low glycaemic index diet during pregnancy on maternal and cord blood metabolomic profiles: results from the ROLO randomized controlled trial. In: Nutrition & metabolism, Vol. 16, 59 [PDF, 952kB]


Background Elevated post-prandial blood glucose during pregnancy has been associated with adverse pregnancy and offspring outcomes, such as maternal gestational diabetes and excessive foetal growth. The ROLO Study is a randomized controlled trial (RCT) investigating the effect of a low glycaemic index (GI) diet in pregnancy to prevent foetal macrosomia (birth weight > 4000 g). We described the impact of a low-GI diet on the maternal and feto-placental unit metabolism by studying how the ROLO intervention affected maternal and cord blood metabolomes. Methods Fasting maternal plasma samples pre- and post-intervention of 51 pregnant women and 132 cord blood samples were measured with a targeted metabolomics approach using liquid-chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry. The differences between RCT groups were explored via multivariate models with covariates correction. Significance was set at Bonferroni-corrected level of 0.05. Results A total of 262 metabolites species, sums and ratios were investigated. While no metabolite reached statistical significance after Bonferroni correction, many maternal phospholipids and acylcarnitines were elevated in the intervention group at uncorrected 0.05 alpha level. Most species contained saturated and monounsaturated fatty acid chains with 16 or 18 carbon atoms. In cord blood, no differences were identified between RCT groups. Conclusions A low-GI diet in pregnancy was associated with a trend to modest but consistent changes in maternal lipid and fatty acid metabolism. The intervention seemed not to affect foetal metabolism. Our exploratory findings may be used to direct further investigations about low GI diets before and during pregnancy, to improve patient care for pre-conceptional and pregnant women with lipid dysregulations and potentially modulate the offspring’s risk for future metabolic diseases.

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