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Gene expression in breastmilk cells is associated with maternal and infant characteristics.

Twigger AJ, Hepworth AR, Lai CT, Chetwynd E, Stuebe AM, Blancafort P, Hartmann PE, Geddes DT, Kakulas F - Sci Rep (2015)

Bottom Line: Genes exerting similar functions, such as either stem cell regulation or milk production, were found to be closely associated.Infant gestational age at delivery and changes in maternal bra cup size between pre-pregnancy and postpartum lactation were associated with expression of genes controlling stemness as well as milk synthesis.Our findings highlight the heterogeneity of breastmilk cell content and its changes associated with characteristics of the breastfeeding dyad that may reflect changing infant needs.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Faculty of Science, The University of Western Australia, 35 Stirling Highway, Crawley WA 6009, Australia.

ABSTRACT
Breastmilk is a rich source of cells with a heterogeneous composition comprising early-stage stem cells, progenitors and more differentiated cells. The gene expression profiles of these cells and their associations with characteristics of the breastfeeding mother and infant are poorly understood. This study investigated factors associated with the cellular dynamics of breastmilk and explored variations amongst women. Genes representing different breastmilk cell populations including mammary epithelial and myoepithelial cells, progenitors, and multi-lineage stem cells showed great variation in expression. Stem cell markers ESRRB and CK5, myoepithelial marker CK14, and lactocyte marker α-lactalbumin were amongst the genes most highly expressed across all samples tested. Genes exerting similar functions, such as either stem cell regulation or milk production, were found to be closely associated. Infant gestational age at delivery and changes in maternal bra cup size between pre-pregnancy and postpartum lactation were associated with expression of genes controlling stemness as well as milk synthesis. Additional correlations were found between genes and dyad characteristics, which may explain abnormalities related to low breastmilk supply or preterm birth. Our findings highlight the heterogeneity of breastmilk cell content and its changes associated with characteristics of the breastfeeding dyad that may reflect changing infant needs.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Graphical representation of gene associations found amongst breastmilk samples using sparse principle components.
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f2: Graphical representation of gene associations found amongst breastmilk samples using sparse principle components.

Mentions: Using principal component analysis (PCA), interactions for most genes tested were found to be within the first four components explaining 85.1% of the total variance within our gene expression profiles (Fig. 2). The first principal component (PC1) explained 52.6% of the variation in gene expression. Largely weighted α-LA and EPCAM clustered together and were in opposition to similarly weighted genes PTEN and NOGGIN. Within the second principal component (PC2) (Fig. 2), which explained a further 20.1% of the variation, the variance for ESRRB was opposite to the genes KLF4 and REX1. In the third principal component (PC3) (Fig. 2), which explained 6.5% of variation, OCT4, SOX2 and NANOG clustered together with similar weighting. In the forth and final principal component (PC4), which explained 5.9% of the variation, CK14 and CK5 clustered together with strong loadings with CK18, which had a weaker loading by comparison (Fig. 2).


Gene expression in breastmilk cells is associated with maternal and infant characteristics.

Twigger AJ, Hepworth AR, Lai CT, Chetwynd E, Stuebe AM, Blancafort P, Hartmann PE, Geddes DT, Kakulas F - Sci Rep (2015)

Graphical representation of gene associations found amongst breastmilk samples using sparse principle components.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4542700&req=5

f2: Graphical representation of gene associations found amongst breastmilk samples using sparse principle components.
Mentions: Using principal component analysis (PCA), interactions for most genes tested were found to be within the first four components explaining 85.1% of the total variance within our gene expression profiles (Fig. 2). The first principal component (PC1) explained 52.6% of the variation in gene expression. Largely weighted α-LA and EPCAM clustered together and were in opposition to similarly weighted genes PTEN and NOGGIN. Within the second principal component (PC2) (Fig. 2), which explained a further 20.1% of the variation, the variance for ESRRB was opposite to the genes KLF4 and REX1. In the third principal component (PC3) (Fig. 2), which explained 6.5% of variation, OCT4, SOX2 and NANOG clustered together with similar weighting. In the forth and final principal component (PC4), which explained 5.9% of the variation, CK14 and CK5 clustered together with strong loadings with CK18, which had a weaker loading by comparison (Fig. 2).

Bottom Line: Genes exerting similar functions, such as either stem cell regulation or milk production, were found to be closely associated.Infant gestational age at delivery and changes in maternal bra cup size between pre-pregnancy and postpartum lactation were associated with expression of genes controlling stemness as well as milk synthesis.Our findings highlight the heterogeneity of breastmilk cell content and its changes associated with characteristics of the breastfeeding dyad that may reflect changing infant needs.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Faculty of Science, The University of Western Australia, 35 Stirling Highway, Crawley WA 6009, Australia.

ABSTRACT
Breastmilk is a rich source of cells with a heterogeneous composition comprising early-stage stem cells, progenitors and more differentiated cells. The gene expression profiles of these cells and their associations with characteristics of the breastfeeding mother and infant are poorly understood. This study investigated factors associated with the cellular dynamics of breastmilk and explored variations amongst women. Genes representing different breastmilk cell populations including mammary epithelial and myoepithelial cells, progenitors, and multi-lineage stem cells showed great variation in expression. Stem cell markers ESRRB and CK5, myoepithelial marker CK14, and lactocyte marker α-lactalbumin were amongst the genes most highly expressed across all samples tested. Genes exerting similar functions, such as either stem cell regulation or milk production, were found to be closely associated. Infant gestational age at delivery and changes in maternal bra cup size between pre-pregnancy and postpartum lactation were associated with expression of genes controlling stemness as well as milk synthesis. Additional correlations were found between genes and dyad characteristics, which may explain abnormalities related to low breastmilk supply or preterm birth. Our findings highlight the heterogeneity of breastmilk cell content and its changes associated with characteristics of the breastfeeding dyad that may reflect changing infant needs.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus