Birthweight factors. . . and other stories

BMJ 2018; 361 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.k1945 (Published 10 May 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;361:k1945

The genetics of birthweight

High maternal levels of glucose during pregnancy stimulate fetal insulin secretion and have a strong influence on birthweight. Recent large scale genome-wide association studies have shown that fetal genetics makes a substantial contribution to birthweight too (Diabetes doi:10.2337/db17-1188). Data from more than 2000 mother-child pairs suggests that the two influences are largely independent. A fetal genetic score had an impact on birthweight at all levels of maternal glycaemia and was not associated with insulin or C-peptide levels in cord blood.

Paths to obesity

The rising trend in the prevalence of type 2 diabetes reflects the rising prevalence of obesity. But the route that people have taken to becoming obese makes some difference to …

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