Nutrition during fetal life is a critical factor contributing to diabetes development in adulthood. The aim of our study was to verify: 1) whether a high-fat (HF) diet in young adult mice induces alterations in beta-cell mass, proliferation, neogenesis, and apoptosis, as well as insulin sensitivity and secretion; 2) whether these alterations may be reversible after HF diet suspension; 3) the effects in a first (F1) and second generation (F2) of mice without direct exposure to a HF diet after birth. Type 2 diabetes developed in adult mice on a HF diet, in F1 mice that were HF diet-exposed during fetal or neonatal life, and in F2 mice whose mothers were HF diet-exposed during their fetal life. beta-cell mass, replication, and neogenesis were high in HF diet-exposed mice and decreased after diet suspension. beta-cell mass and replication remained high in F1 mice and decreased in F2 mice whose mothers were exposed to a HF diet. beta-cell neogenesis was present in adult mice on a HF diet and in F1 mice that were HF diet-exposed during fetal and/or neonatal life. We conclude that a HF diet during fetal life, particularly if combined with the same insult during the suckling period, can induce the type 2 diabetes phenotype, which can be directly transmitted to the progeny even in the absence of additional dietary insults.
- Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2
- Dietary Fats
- Insulin Resistance
- Insulin-Secreting Cells
- Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects