Placental Adaptive Changes to Protect Function and Decrease Oxidative Damage in Metabolically Healthy Maternal Obesity
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Author/sSantos-Rosendo, Celeste; Bugatto, Fernando; González-Domínguez, Álvaro; Lechuga-Sancho, Alfonso; Mateos Bernal, Rosa María; Visiedo-García, Francisco M.
DepartmentBiología; Biomedicina, Biotecnología y Salud Pública; Materno-Infantil y Radiología
SourceAntioxidants 2020, 9(9), 794
Pregnancy-related disorders, including preeclampsia and gestational diabetes, are characterized by the presence of an adverse intrauterine milieu that may ultimately result in oxidative and nitrosative stress. This scenario may trigger uncontrolled production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) such as superoxide anion (OBLACK CIRCLE-) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS) such as nitric oxide (NO), along with an inactivation of antioxidant systems, which are associated with the occurrence of relevant changes in placental function through recognized redox post-translational modifications in key proteins. The general objective of this study was to assess the impact of a maternal obesogenic enviroment on the regulation of the placental nitroso-redox balance at the end of pregnancy. We measured oxidative damage markers-thiobarbituric acid-reacting substances (TBARS) and carbonyl groups (C=O) levels; nitrosative stress markers-inducible nitric oxide synthase, nitrosothiol groups, and nitrotyrosine residues levels; and the antioxidant biomarkers-catalase and superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity and expression, and total antioxidant capacity (TAC), in full-term placental villous from both pre-pregnancy normal weight and obese women, and with absence of metabolic complications throughout gestation. The results showed a decrease in C=O and TBARS levels in obese pregnancies. Although total SOD and catalase concentrations were shown to be increased, both activities were significantly downregulated in obese pregnancies, along with total antioxidant capacity. Inducible nitric oxide sintase levels were increased in the obese group compared to the lean group, accompanied by an increase in nitrotyrosine residues levels and lower levels of nitrosothiol groups in proteins such as ERK1/2. These findings reveal a reduction in oxidative damage, accompanied by a decline in antioxidant response, and an increase via NO-mediated nitrative stress in placental tissue from metabolically healthy pregnancies with obesity. All this plausibly points to a placental adaptation of the affected antioxidant response towards a NO-induced alternative pathway, through changes in the ROS/RNS balance, in order to reduce oxidative damage and preserve placental function in pregnancy.