Background: Increased fat intake is associated with obesity and may make obese individuals uniquely susceptible to the effects of lipophilic aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) ligands. Objectives: We investigated the consequences of high-fat diet (HFD) and AHR ligands on body composition, mammary development, and hepatic P450 expression. Methods: Pregnant C57BL/6J (B6) and DBA/2J (D2) dams, respectively expressing high- or low-responsive AHR, were dosed at mid-gestation with TCDD. At parturition, mice were placed on an HFD or a low-fat diet (LFD). Body fat of progeny was measured before dosing with 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA). Fasting blood glucose was measured, and liver and mammary glands were analyzed. Results: Maternal TCDD exposure resulted in reduced litter size in D2 mice and, on HFD, reduced postpartum survival in B6 mice. In D2 mice, HFD increased body mass and fat in offspring, induced precocious mammary gland development, and increased AHR expression compared with mice given an LFD. Maternal TCDD exposure increased hepatic Cyp1a1 and Cyp1b1 expression in offspring on both diets, but DMBA depressed Cyp1b1 expression only in mice fed an HFD. In D2 progeny, TCDD exposure decreased mammary terminal end bud size, and DMBA exposure decreased the number of terminal end buds. Only in D2 progeny fed HFD did perinatal TCDD increase blood glucose and the size of mammary fat pads, while decreasing both branch elongation and the number of terminal end buds. Conlusions: We conclude that despite having a low-responsive AHR, D2 progeny fed a diet similar to that consumed by most people are susceptible to TCDD and DMBA exposure effects blood glucose levels, mammary differentiation, and hepatic Cyp1 expression.
- 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD)
- Aryl hydrocarbon receptor
- Fetal loss
- Gene-environment interactions
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health