Altered pregnancy outcomes in mice following treatment with the hyperglycaemia mimetic, glucosamine, during the periconception period

Cheryl J. Schelbach, Rebecca L. Robker, Brenton D. Bennett, Ashley D. Gauld, Jeremy G. Thompson, Karen L. Kind

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13 Citations (Scopus)


Exposure of cumulus-oocyte complexes to the hyperglycaemia mimetic, glucosamine, during in vitro maturation impairs embryo development, potentially through upregulation of the hexosamine biosynthesis pathway. This study examined the effects of in vivo periconception glucosamine exposure on reproductive outcomes in young healthy mice, and further assessed the effects in overweight mice fed a high-fat diet. Eight-week-old mice received daily glucosamine injections (20 or 400mgkg-1) for 3-6 days before and 1 day after mating (periconception). Outcomes were assessed at Day 18 of gestation. Glucosamine treatment reduced litter size independent of dose. A high-fat diet (21% fat) for 11 weeks before and during pregnancy reduced fetal size. No additional effects of periconception glucosamine (20mgkg-1) on pregnancy outcomes were observed in fat-fed mice. In 16-week-old mice fed the control diet, glucosamine treatment reduced fetal weight and increased congenital abnormalities, but did not alter litter size. As differing effects of glucosamine were observed in 8-week-old and 16-week-old mice, maternal age effects were assessed. Periconception glucosamine at 8 weeks reduced litter size, whereas glucosamine at 16 weeks reduced fetal size. Thus, in vivo periconception glucosamine exposure perturbs reproductive outcomes in mice, with the nature of the outcomes dependent upon maternal age.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)405-416
Number of pages12
JournalReproduction, Fertility and Development
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 4 Feb 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • fetal development
  • hexosamine biosynthesis pathway.

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