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Background: The adverse effects on offspring of diabetic and/or obese mothers can be passed to the next generation. However, the mechanisms behind this are still unclear. Epigenetics may play a key role during this process.Methods: To confirm the hypothesis, we investigated the DNA methylation of several imprinted genes in spermatozoa of offspring from diabetic and/or obese mothers utilizing streptozotocin (STZ)- and high-fat-diet (HFD)-induced mouse models.Results: We found that the DNA methylation of Peg3 was significantly increased in spermatozoa of offspring of obese mothers compared to that in spermatozoa of offspring of normal mothers. The DNA methylation of H19 was significantly higher in spermatozoa of offspring of diabetic mothers than that in spermatozoa of offspring of non-diabetic mothers.Conclusions: These results indicate that pre-gestational diabetes and/or obesity can alter DNA methylation in offspring spermatozoa. © 2014 Ge et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Ge, Z. J., Liang, Q. X., Hou, Y., Han, Z. M., Schatten, H., Sun, Q. Y., & Zhang, C. L. (2014). Maternal obesity and diabetes may cause DNA methylation alteration in the spermatozoa of offspring in mice. Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology, 12(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/1477-7827-12-29