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31 Maternal Obesity Causes Sex Specific Long-Term Hematopoietic and Metabolic Defects

Program: Oral and Poster Abstracts
Type: Oral
Session: 501. Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cells and Hematopoiesis: Basic and Translational: Inflammation, Metabolism, and Stress
Hematology Disease Topics & Pathways:
Research, Fundamental Science
Saturday, December 9, 2023: 9:30 AM

Merve Denizli, M.D.1*, James Ropa, BS, MSc, PhD2, Lindsay Beasley, MS2*, Kelli DeVanna, M.S.1*, Laura S. Haneline, M.D.3*, Kok Lim Kua, M.D.1* and Maegan L Capitano, PhD2

1Department of Pediatrics-Neonatal Medicine, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN
2Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN
3Department of Pediatrics, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN

Maternal obesity is increasingly common and can negatively impact offspring health. Children born to obese mothers are at higher risk of developing diseases involved with metabolic health (e.g., type 2 diabetes). Many of these diseases are associated with abnormalities within the hematopoietic system such as atypical immune profiles or hematopoiesis. Interestingly, disease incidence and/or severity is often dependent on the offspring’s gender. This suggests that there may be sex-specific reprogramming of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) during immune cell development. This study aims to test the hypothesis that offspring of obese mice exhibit sex-differences in HSPC function that affect offspring’s metabolic health. To test this, C57BL/6 (CD45.2+) dams were fed standard chow (2018SX, Envigo, IN) or western-style diet (TD.88137, Envigo, IN) for four weeks prior to mating, through pregnancy, and the lactating period. At postnatal day 21, HSPCs (Lineage negative, Sca1 positive, cKit positive cells) were flow-sorted from bone marrow (BM) of offspring from dams fed chow (Con) or western-style diet (MatOb) and used for competitive transplant (Boy/J BM competitor cells; CD45.1+) into same-sex lethally irradiated C57BL/6 x Boy/J F1 (CD45.1+CD45.2+) recipient mice (8-10 weeks of age) or for RNA-sequencing analysis. Secondary transplants were performed to look at long-term engraftment potential of HSPCs. Body weight, body adiposity, fasting insulin, glucose tolerance test (GTT), and pancreatic β and α-cell area were assessed on male and female recipients of both primary and secondary transplants. Compared to mice that received male Con HSPCs, recipient mice that received male MatOb HSPCs had significantly lower donor chimerism in the blood and BM post-secondary transplantation. This was associated with a significant reduction in donor hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) numbers in the BM 16 weeks post-secondary transplant, indicating male MatOb HSPCs had decreased long-term engraftment capability due to an exhaustion of the HSC pool. This reduction in HSPC engraftment seen between male MatOb versus Con HSPCs was not seen when using HSPCs from female offspring. Next, metabolic parameters of our recipient mice was examined. Sixteen weeks after primary transplant, there were no differences detected in body weight and adiposity in the Con and MatOb HSPC recipient mice. Compared to sex-matched controls, we found that recipients transplanted with male MatOb HSPCs developed glucose intolerance, increased fasting serum insulin concentrations, and decreased β-cell area, supporting the presence of impaired glucose metabolism due to a combination of insulin resistance and lower β-cell mass. There was no difference in recipients of HSPCs from female Con and female MatOb pups. RNA-seq of BM HSPCs at time of transplant (p21) from Con or MatOb revealed 100 differentially expressed genes (DEG) in male MatOb HSPCs and 1788 DEG in female MatOb HSPCs. There were more and higher magnitude of differential gene expression in female mice than male, despite the long-term phenotypic differences being evident in males but not females, and the majority of genes changed in males were also altered in females. This suggests that the gene programs responsible for the observed phenotypes may be altered by maternal obesity in both male and female offspring, but that female offspring have a transcriptomic profile that confers protection on the HSPC population. One of the most striking findings from the transcriptomic analysis was a marked enrichment in gene programs associated with immune response, interferon signaling, and cytokine production in female MatOb offspring compared to sex matched controls that is not seen in male MatOb offspring. Pathway analysis identified upregulation of programs involving both IFNγ and IL-10 in the female MatOb HSPCs when compared to sex-mated Con HSPCs which correlated with an increase in IL-10 concentrations in the serum of p21 female MatOb mice. These pathways were downregulated or unaltered in males with no change in systemic IL-10 concentration. Our results demonstrate that maternal obesity results in sex-specific changes in offspring HSPC function and a novel role HSPCs may play in regulating glucose metabolism in the offspring of obese dams.

Disclosures: No relevant conflicts of interest to declare.

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