The eyes are riched in long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFAs) such as arachidonic acid [ARA; 20:4 (n-6)] and docosahexaenoic acid [DHA; 22:6 (n-3)]. Despite their abundance in the eyes, ARA and DHA cannot be sufficiently synthesized de novo in mammals. During gestation, eye development is exceptionally rapid, and substantial amounts of LC-PUFAs are needed to ensure proper eye development. Here, we studied the influences of dietary LC-PUFAs in dams (C57BL/6 and C3H/He) on the eye morphogenesis and organogenesis of their pups. Intriguingly, fetuses and newborn mice from C57BL/6 dams fed an LC-PUFA (particularly ARA)-enriched diet displayed a much higher incidence of eye abnormalities such as microphthalmia (small eye) and corneal opacity than those from dams fed an LC-PUFA-poor diet. The effects of LC-PUFAs on eye anomalies were evident only in the female pups of C57BL/6 inbred mice, not in those of C3H/He mice or male C57BL/6 mice. These results demonstrate a gene-by-environment (GxE) interaction in eye development in mice. Furthermore, our molecular analysis suggested the potential roles of Pitx3 and Pax6 in the above interaction involving ARA.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications|
|Publication status||Published - 2010 Nov 12|
- Corneal opacity
- Gene expression
- GxE interaction
- Mouse inbred strain