Lactation Leads to Modifications in Maternal Renin-Angiotensin System in Later Life

Mauricio La Rosa, Talar Kechichian, Gayle Olson, George Saade, Egle Bytautiene Prewit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The objective of this study was to evaluate whether the renin-angiotensin system (RAS) is associated with maternal cardioprotective phenotype observed in post-lactated mice later in life. Following the delivery, CD-1 female mice were randomized to one of the following groups: lactated (nursed pups for 3 weeks, n = 10) or non-lactated (pups were removed after birth, n = 10). The mice were sacrificed 6 months after the delivery, and tissues were collected. Protein levels of angiotensinogen, angiotensin type 1 and 2 receptors (AT1R, AT2R), angiotensin converting enzymes (ACE, ACE2), and MAS receptor were determined using Western blot. Results were analyzed using Student’s t-test and Mann-Whitney test as appropriate (significance: P < 0.05). Angiotensinogen levels were significantly lower in the liver (P = 0.0002), and ACE was significantly decreased in the lungs (P = 0.04) and kidney (P = 0.001) from lactated mice as compared to non-lactated. The levels of AT2R in the kidney (P = 0.02) and visceral adipose tissue (VAT, P = 0.04), the ACE 2 in the VAT (P = 0.03) and heart (P = 0.04), and MAS receptor in VAT (P = 0.02) were significantly elevated in tissues from lactated mice. No other differences were found. Lactation led to the upregulation and downregulation of selected RAS components in lactated mice as compared to non-lactated group and may be a contributing factor to maternal cardioprotective phenotype later in life. Further studies are needed to dissect the mechanisms between lactation and the long-term maternal cardiometabolic benefits, which could lead to the therapies to prevent cardiovascular disease in women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)260-266
Number of pages7
JournalReproductive Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020


  • Angiotensin
  • Lactation
  • Long-term effect
  • Murine model
  • Renin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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