Research Article

Abnormalities in vascular arachidonic acid metabolism in the infant of the diabetic mother.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985; 290 doi: (Published 08 June 1985) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985;290:1700
  1. M J Stuart,
  2. S G Sunderji,
  3. R W Walenga,
  4. B N Setty


    The infant of the diabetic mother has an increased incidence of thromboses in utero and in the neonatal period. In the adult with diabetes a decrease in prostacyclin formation has been suggested as a cause for the atherothrombotic tendency. We therefore evaluated arachidonic acid metabolism in infants of diabetic mothers. Endogenous radioimmunoassayable 6-keto prostaglandin F1 alpha (PGF1 alpha) was normal in umbilical vessels obtained from the infants of diabetic mothers whose glucose homoeostasis was maintained when compared with control values. Nevertheless, a significant inhibition of vascular production of 6-keto PGF1 alpha was observed in infants born to mothers with raised HbA1C concentrations. A decrease in the concentration of plasma 6-keto PGF1 alpha was also seen in the infants of diabetic mothers when compared with control neonates. The correlation observed between plasma 6-keto PGF1 alpha concentrations and endogenous vascular prostacyclin formation in the infants of diabetic mothers indicates that the in vitro deficiency of prostacyclin formation reflects a concomitant in vivo abnormality.