Fetal hypoglycaemia consequent on food withdrawal for 48 h in sheep in late pregnancy is accompanied by an increase in fetal PGE2 plasma concentrations and myometrial contractility. To assess the contribution of fetal hypoglycaemia and related cellular glucopenia in the increased production of fetal PGE2 we studied the effect of 48 h insulin infusion to the fetus. Fetal whole blood glucose was lowered from 19 ± 2 to 9 ± 1 mg.dl-1. This experimental regimen maintains glucose availability to those fetal cells in which insulin increases glucose uptake. Fetal umbilical venous and femoral arterial PGE2 concentrations and umbilical veno-arterial PGE2 difference were unchanged, but maternal uterine veno-arterial difference for PGFM increased during the insulin induced fetal hypoglycaemia. Myometrial activity was also unchanged. We conclude that the increased fetal PGE concentration previously reported during food withdrawal is due to a deficiency of glucose to specific insulin dependent cells within vascular beds served by the fetal cardiovascular system. In addition, the findings suggest a need for a supply of glucose of fetal origin for cells that are responsible for increased PGFM concentrations in the maternal uteroplacental circulation.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Journal of Developmental Physiology|
|State||Published - 1991|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental Biology