Background: The mechanism of diabetes-induced congenital malformation remains to be elucidated. It has been reported that α-lipoic acid (LA) prevents neural tube defects (NTDs) in offsprings of rats with streptozotocin-induced diabetes. Here, we evaluate the protective effect of LA against diabetic embryopathy, including NTDs, cardiovascular malformations (CVMs), and skeletal malformations, in mice. Methods: Female mice were rendered hyperglycemic using streptozotocin and then mated with normal male mouse. Pregnant diabetic or non-diabetic mice were treated daily with either LA (100 mg/kg body weight) or saline between gestational days 0 and 18. On day 18, fetuses were examined for congenital malformations. Results: Plasma glucose levels on day 18 were not affected by LA treatment. No congenital malformations were observed either in the saline-treated or LA-treated non-diabetic group. In the saline-treated diabetic group, 39% of fetuses had external malformations and 30% had NTDs. In the LA-treated diabetic group, the corresponding proportions were 11 and 8%, respectively. LA treatment also decreased the incidence of CVMs from 30-3% and of skeletal malformations from 29-6%. Conclusions: We conclude that LA can reduce NTDs, CVMs and skeletal malformations in the offspring of diabetic mice at term delivery.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism