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Gestational diabetes mellitus and infant adiposity at birth: A systematic review and meta-analysis of therapeutic interventions


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Herath, M, Beckett, J ORCID: 0000-0002-2911-0313, Hills, AP ORCID: 0000-0002-7787-7201, Byrne, NM ORCID: 0000-0001-5310-6640 and Ahuja, KDK ORCID: 0000-0002-0323-4692 2021 , 'Gestational diabetes mellitus and infant adiposity at birth: A systematic review and meta-analysis of therapeutic interventions' , Journal of Clinical Medicine, vol. 10, no. 4 , pp. 1-26 , doi: 10.3390/jcm10040835.

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Exposure to untreated gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) in utero increases the risk ofobesity and type 2 diabetes in adulthood, and increased adiposity in GDM-exposed infants is suggested as a plausible mediator of this increased risk of later-life metabolic disorders. Evidence isequivocal regarding the impact of good glycaemic control in GDM mothers on infant adiposity atbirth. We systematically reviewed studies reporting fat mass (FM), percent fat mass (%FM) andskinfold thicknesses (SFT) at birth in infants of mothers with GDM controlled with therapeutic interventions (IGDMtr). While treating GDM lowered FM in newborns compared to no treatment,there was no difference in FM and SFT according to the type of treatment (insulin, metformin, glyburide). IGDMtr had higher overall adiposity (mean difference, 95% confidence interval) measuredwith FM (68.46 g, 29.91 to 107.01) and %FM (1.98%, 0.54 to 3.42) but similar subcutaneous adipositymeasured with SFT, compared to infants exposed to normal glucose tolerance (INGT). This suggeststhat IGDMtr may be characterised by excess fat accrual in internal adipose tissue. Given that intraabdominal adiposity is a major risk factor for metabolic disorders, future studies should distinguishadipose tissue distribution of IGDMtr and INGT.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Herath, M and Beckett, J and Hills, AP and Byrne, NM and Ahuja, KDK
Keywords: gestational diabetes mellitus, treatment, adiposity, fat mass, skinfold thickness, newborns, infants
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Clinical Medicine
Publisher: MDPI AG
ISSN: 2077-0383
DOI / ID Number: 10.3390/jcm10040835
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2021 the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.This article is an open access articledistributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (

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