Early-Life Exposure to Dietary Large Phospholipid-Coated Lipid Droplets Improves Markers of Metabolic and Immune Function in Adipose Tissue Later in Life in a Mouse Model

Klein Hazebroek, Marlou; Baars, Annemarie; Mischke, Mona; Oosting, Annemarie; van Schothorst, Evert M.; Schipper, Lidewij


Scope: Human milk (HM) is considered optimal nutrition for infants, beneficially programming adult health outcomes including reduced obesity risk. Early life exposure to infant formula with lipid droplets closely resembling the structural properties of HM lipid globules (Nuturis) attenuated white adipose tissue (WAT) accumulation in mice upon adult western-style diet (WSD) feeding. Here, the study aims to elucidate underlying mechanisms. Methods and results: Mice are raised on control or Nuturis diets between postnatal days 16–42 followed by either standard diet or WSD for 16 weeks. While the adult body composition of mice on a standard diet is not significantly affected, Nuturis reduced adiposity in mice on WSD. Morphologically, mean adipocyte size is reduced in Nuturis-raised mice, independent of adult diet exposure, and WAT macrophage content is reduced, albeit not significantly. Transcriptomics of epididymal WAT indicate potential beneficial effects on energy metabolism and macrophage function by Nuturis. Conclusion: Reduced adult adiposity by early life exposure to Nuturis appears to be associated with smaller adipocytes and alterations in WAT immune and energy metabolism. These results suggest that early modulation of WAT structure and/or function may contribute to the protective programming effects of the early-life Nuturis diet on later-life adiposity.