Navigation Links
Babies Born to Obese Mothers May Have Low Iron: Study

THURSDAY, July 12 (HealthDay News) -- Obese women who become pregnant may give birth to babies with low levels of iron, a new study reveals.

The findings suggest that overproduction of an iron-regulating hormone, known as hepcidin, can interfere with the transfer of iron from an obese woman to her unborn child.

Children born with iron deficiency are at greater risk for developmental delays in their motor and thinking skills, the researchers noted.

The study was released online in advance of publication in an upcoming print issue of the Journal of Perinatology.

"The data on the impact of low maternal iron levels on the fetus comes from undernourished populations," the study's first author, Dr. Sarbattama Sen, a neonatologist at Tufts Medical Center and an assistant professor of pediatrics at Tufts University School of Medicine, said in a university news release. "To the best of our knowledge, ours is the first study to demonstrate that obesity might hamper iron transfer from mother to child and offers some insight into the mechanism of how it occurs."

During pregnancy, a woman's hepcidin levels remain low to improve the transfer of iron to her unborn baby. Obese adults, however, have been shown to produce higher levels of hepcidin than people with a normal weight. Too much of this hormone, the study authors noted, can interfere with the transfer of iron from a mother to her developing fetus.

The research, from the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University and The Mother Infant Research Institute at Tufts Medical Center, examined 15 obese pregnant women and 15 pregnant women with a normal weight. The investigators conducted blood tests on the women during their second trimester. They also used cord blood to assess the iron status of their newborns.

Being born to an obese mother with high levels of hepcidin was associated with lower iron status at birth, the researchers found.

"When there is excess hepcidin in a cell, it binds to and inhibits the function of ferroportin, the protein that allows iron to pass through the cell membrane and into the bloodstream," senior study author Simin Nikbin Meydani, director of Tufts' Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, explained in the release.

The study's first author, Maria Carlota Dao, a doctoral student at the center, added: "The chronic low-grade inflammation that can result from being obese triggers an abnormal immune response, increasing production of proteins that increase hepcidin levels."

However, the authors added that more research is needed to investigate the link between obesity and hepcidin levels and the iron status of newborns before any changes are made to the dietary recommendations for obese pregnant women.

"During pregnancy, women should try to eat a varied, healthy diet while taking the standard prenatal vitamins recommended by their doctors," Sen said. "Weight-gain goals should be based on a woman's BMI prior to becoming pregnant." BMI, or body mass index, is a measurement that takes into account height and weight.

While the study found an association between maternal obesity and infants' iron levels, it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.

More information

The American Academy of Family Physicians has more about iron deficiency in infants.

-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas

SOURCE: Tufts University, news release, July 9, 2012

Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Babies With Pets Not Dogged by Colds: Study
2. 5 Million Test Tube Babies Born to Date
3. Kernicterus Brain Damage in Babies Linked to Medical Malpractice
4. Small Babies Can Be Sign of Heart Problems in Mother
5. Standing at Work All Day While Pregnant Linked to Smaller Babies
6. Blood test for pregnant women could predict risk of having dangerously small babies
7. C-Section Babies May Be More Likely to Fail First Hearing Test
8. Save the Children report shows global health funding often ignores newborn babies
9. Scientists discover gene which causes rare disease in babies
10. Overweight Moms More Apt to Have Large Babies, Study Says
11. Babies susceptibility to colds linked to immune response at birth
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Babies Born to Obese Mothers May Have Low Iron: Study 
(Date:11/27/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... the largest, most successful and prominent nonprofit healthcare organizations in the country. They ... involvement with various organizations, and helped advance the healthcare industry as a whole ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... Patients at ... Michigan, have come together on Thanksgiving Day to share the things that they ... on the Serenity Point YouTube channel, patients displayed what they wrote on index ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... The Catalent Applied Drug ... need to integrate dose form selection in early phase drug development. The first ... supporting and bringing together the UK’s emerging life sciences companies, corporate partners, and ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... CA (PRWEB) , ... November 26, 2015 , ... ... a new set of retro-fused, self-animating trailer titles with ProTrailer: Vintage. This newly ... options. These classically-influenced trailer titles work with any font, giving users limitless opportunities ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... As part of ... Empowerment ™ attracts volunteers together who want to combine talents and resources to ... stakeholders in the process. The non-profit launched its first major fundraiser on November ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... -- The total global healthcare industry is expected to grow at ... America has the highest projected growth at 12.7%, ... ), is second with growth projected at 11.5%. ... expenditure. In 2013-2014, total government funded healthcare was nearly 68%. ... 41.2% in 2013-2014. In real terms, out of pocket expenditure ...
(Date:11/25/2015)...  The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), American ... March of Dimes cheered today,s signature into law ... of 2015 (S.799), which takes much-needed strides ... to drugs, such as opioids, and to improve ... organizations have worked together leading advocacy efforts for ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... Nov. 25, 2015 AAIPharma Services Corp./Cambridge ... of at least $15.8  Million to expand its ... NC . The expansion will provide additional ... the growing demands of the pharmaceutical and biotechnology ... expansion will provide up to 40,000 square feet ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: