The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism Journal Article

Gestational Diabetes and Human Amniocytes

October 19, 2020
 

Sara E Pinney, Apoorva Joshi, Victoria Yin, So Won Min, Cetewayo Rashid, David E Condon, Paul Zhipang Wang
The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, Volume 105, Issue 10, 1 October 2020, dgaa466
https://doi.org/10.1210/clinem/dgaa466

Abstract

Context

Gestational diabetes (GDM) has profound effects on the intrauterine metabolic milieu and is linked to obesity and diabetes in offspring, but the mechanisms driving these effects remain largely unknown. Alterations in DNA methylation and gene expression in amniocytes exposed to GDM in utero represent a potential mechanism leading to metabolic dysfunction later in life.

Objective

To profile changes in genome-wide DNA methylation and expression in human amniocytes exposed to GDM.

Design

A nested case-control study (n = 14 pairs) was performed in amniocytes matched for offspring sex, maternal race/ethnicity, maternal age, gestational age at amniocentesis, and gestational age at birth. Sex-specific genome-wide DNA methylation analysis and RNA-sequencing were completed and differentially methylated regions (DMRs) and gene expression changes were identified. Ingenuity pathway analysis identified biologically relevant pathways enriched after GDM exposure. In silico high-throughput chromosome conformation capture (Hi-C) analysis identified potential chromatin interactions with DMRs.

Results

Expression of interferon-stimulated genes was increased in GDM amniocytes, accounting for 6 of the top 10 altered genes (q < 0.05). Enriched biological pathways in GDM amniocytes included pathways involving inflammation, the interferon response, fatty liver disease, monogenic diabetes, and atherosclerosis. Forty-two DMRs were identified in male GDM-exposed amniocytes and 20 in female amniocyte analysis (q < 0.05). Hi-C analysis identified interactions between DMRs and 11 genes with significant expression changes in male amniocytes and 9 in female amniocytes (P < .05).

Conclusion

In a unique repository of human amniocytes exposed to GDM in utero, transcriptome analysis identified enrichment of inflammation and interferon-related pathways and novel DMRs with potential distal regulatory functions.

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