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Prenatal exposure to IL-1beta results in disturbed skeletal growth in adult rat offspring

Journal article
Authors Diana Swolin-Eide
Cecilia Nilsson
Agneta Holmäng
Claes Ohlsson
Published in Pediatr Res
Volume 55
Issue 4
Pages 598-603
Publication year 2004
Published at Wallenberg Laboratory
Institute of Internal Medicine, Dept of Medicine
Institute of Internal Medicine
Institute for the Health of Women and Children, Dept of Paediatrics
Pages 598-603
Language en
Keywords Animals, Bone Density, *Bone Development/drug effects/physiology, *Bone and Bones/anatomy & histology/physiology, Eating, Female, Fetus/*anatomy & histology/*drug effects, Gestational Age, Interleukin-1/*pharmacology, Male, Pregnancy, *Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects, Random Allocation, Rats, Rats, Wistar
Subject categories Medical and Health Sciences


Events occurring early in life or prenatally are able to play important roles in the pathogenesis of diseases in adult life. Different sorts of stress or hormonal influences, during particular periods of pregnancy, may result in persistent or transient changes in physiology. IL-1 is a multifunctional cytokine that is involved in bone metabolism. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether exposure to IL-1beta during fetal life has any effect on skeletal growth or bone mineral density in adult rat offspring. Pregnant rats were given intraperitoneal injections of IL-1beta, 1 microg/rat, or saline on days 8, 10, and 12 of gestation. Male IL-1-exposed offspring showed reduced height, areal bone mineral density, and bone mineral content at vertebra L5. Tibial length was reduced in both male and female offspring. Peripheral quantitative computed tomography analyses revealed reduced cortical bone mineral content caused by a decreased cortical cross-sectional area as a result of a decreased cortical thickness, whereas there was no reduction in the amount of trabecular bone in the tibia of male offspring. Our results demonstrate that prenatal exposure to IL-1 can induce specific programming of skeletal tissue. In conclusion, prenatal IL-1 exposure results in decreased skeletal growth and a reduced amount of cortical bone but unchanged trabecular bone mineral density in adult rat offspring.

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