Differential cardiac geometry during pregnancy in lean versus obese mice

Kayla Dudick, Chen Che, Robin Shoemaker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Pregnancy is a sensitive window where factors adversely affecting maternal cardiac health may leave women vulnerable to cardiovascular disease (CVD) later in life. However, it is not clear how cardiac changes during pregnancy influence long-term cardiovascular health. Obesity, an independent risk factor for CVD, promotes adverse cardiac remodeling. Effects of obesity-mediated cardiac remodeling concurrent with physiologic cardiac hypertrophy of pregnancy are not well-studied. Methods: Female C57BL/6J mice (8 weeks old) were fed a high fat (HF; 60% kcal from fat) or a control low fat (LF; 10% kcal from fat) diet for 8 weeks, then were crossed with male mice to become pregnant (P) or remained non-pregnant (NP) controls. After 18 days, cardiac morphology and function was quantified by echocardiography in LF and HF P and NP mice. Results: Lean mice had increased left ventricular (LV) mass and LV end-diastolic diameter with pregnancy. In contrast, although LV mass was greater with obesity, it was not augmented with pregnancy in obese mice. Further, pregnant obese mice had decreased LV chamber diameter and increased relative wall thickness compared to lean mice. Conclusions: We report a differential cardiac geometry during pregnancy in lean versus obese mice in a mouse model of diet-induced obesity. These data suggest obesity during pregnancy promotes concentric remodeling, versus eccentric remodeling in lean mice. Adverse effects of obesity on cardiac remodeling during pregnancy may be an important contributor to subsequent maternal cardiovascular risk.

Original languageEnglish
Article number040
JournalReviews in Cardiovascular Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 20 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Research was supported through the University of Kentucky Center of Research in Obesity and Cardiovascular Disease (COCVD), (a Center of Biomedical Research Excellence [COBRE]), an Institutional Development Award (IDeA) from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health under grant numbers P30 GM127211 and 3210001211 (RS).

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by IMR Press. This is an open access article under the CC BY 4.0 license.


  • Cardiac hypertrophy
  • Cardiac remodeling
  • Echocardiography
  • Maternal
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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