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No association of maternal gestational weight gain with offspring blood pressure and hypertension at age 18 years in male sibling-pairs: a prospective register-based cohort study
Karolinska Institutet.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7295-7341
Karolinska Institutet.
University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark.
University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark / Frederiksberg Hospital, Copenhagen, The Capital Region, Denmark / Bristol University, Bristol, United Kingdom.
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2015 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 10, no 3, e0121202Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND: Maternal gestational weight gain (GWG) is associated with birth weight, obesity, and possibly blood pressure (BP) and hypertension in the offspring. These associations may however be confounded by genetic and/or shared environmental factors. In contrast to previous studies based on non-siblings and self-reported data, we investigated whether GWG is associated with offspring BP and hypertension, in a register-based cohort of full brothers while controlling for fixed shared effects.

METHODS: By using Swedish nation-wide record-linkage data, we identified women with at least two male children (full brothers) born 1982-1989. Their BP was obtained from the mandatory military conscription induction tests. We adopted linear and Poisson regression models with robust variance, using generalized estimating equations to analyze associations between GWG and BP, as well as with hypertension, within and between offspring sibling-pairs.

RESULTS: Complete data on the mothers' GWG and offspring BP was obtained for 9,816 brothers (4,908 brother-pairs). Adjusted regression models showed no significant associations between GWG and SBP (β = 0.03 mmHg per 1-kg GWG difference, [95% CI -0.08, 0.14], or DBP (β = -0.03 mmHg per 1-kg GWG difference [95% CI -0.11, 0.05]), or between GWG and offspring's risk of hypertension (relative risk = 1.0 [95% CI 0.99, 1.02], neither within nor between siblings.

CONCLUSIONS: In this large sibling-pair study, we did not find any significant association between GWG and offspring BP or the risk of hypertension at 18y, when taking genetic and environmental factors shared within sibling pairs into account. Further large sibling studies are required to confirm a null association between GWG and other cardiovascular risk factors.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 10, no 3, e0121202
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:rkh:diva-2401DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0121202PubMedID: 25794174OAI: oai:DiVA.org:rkh-2401DiVA: diva2:1095924
Available from: 2017-05-16 Created: 2017-05-16 Last updated: 2017-05-17Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Pregnancy weight gain: family studies on the effects on offspring’s body size and blood pressure
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Pregnancy weight gain: family studies on the effects on offspring’s body size and blood pressure
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Introduction: Increasing maternal weight gain during pregnancy, gestational weight gain (GWG), is associated with several adverse outcomes in the child, e.g. high birth weight, childhood overweight and obesity, as well as adult blood pressure (BP). Studies have also shown that specific periods of pregnancy might be more sensitive in terms of influencing these outcomes. However, the aforementioned associations could be explained by genetic and/or environmental factors which are shared between the mother and child. As far as we know, no studies have examined to what extent these genetic and environmental factors explain the variation in GWG.

Aims: The overall aim of this PhD thesis was therefore to investigate the possible associations between GWG and the children’s birth weight and body mass index (BMI) during childhood (study 2), and BP during early adulthood (study 3), while taking environmental and genetic factors shared between the mother and child into account (within the twin/sibling pairs). The current thesis also aimed at exploring how much of the variation in GWG which is determined by genetic (the heritability) and both unique and common environmental factors (study 1).

Methods and Results: Study 1 was a register-based twin study with Swedish female monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twin pairs with children born 1982-1989 and 1992- 2010. Genetic factors accounted for 43% of the variation in GWG in the first pregnancy (N = 694 twin mother-pairs) and 26% in the second pregnancy (N = 465 twin mother-pairs). Unique environmental factors explained the remaining variation in GWG. Studies 2 and 3 were both prospective cohort studies, where study 2 was based on a data-collection of Swedish MZ twin mothers born 1962 to 1975 and their children (N = 82 twin mother-pairs), and study 3 was register-based and included Swedish male sibling pairs born 1982-1989 (N = 4908 brother pairs). In study 2, the results indicated that total, and possibly also second and third trimester weight gain, were associated with birth weight in the offspring within the twin pairs in the fully adjusted model. In terms of GWG and offspring weight and BMI during infancy and childhood, no associations were found. In study 3, no significant associations were found between GWG and systolic BP, or diastolic BP, or the offspring’s risk of hypertension, neither within nor between the sibling pairs.

Conclusions: This thesis shows that the total GWG, and specifically weight gain during the second and third trimester, seem to be positively associated with offspring birth weight, but no effects were seen for BMI during infancy and childhood. However, due to the limited sample size, this requires further investigation. Moreover, no association was found between total GWG and the male sibling pairs’ BP at the age of 18 years. The variation in GWG seems to be largely explained by the mother’s unique environment during pregnancy and to a smaller degree by genetic factors.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Karolinska Institutet, 2016
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:rkh:diva-2402 (URN)978-91-7676-355-1 (ISBN)
Available from: 2017-05-17 Created: 2017-05-17 Last updated: 2017-05-17Bibliographically approved

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