Maternal obesity associated with inflammation in their children

Karen L. Leibowitz, Reneé H. Moore, Rexford S. Ahima, Albert J. Stunkard, Virginia A. Stallings, Robert I. Berkowitz, Jesse L. Chittams, Myles S. Faith, Nicolas Stettler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: This study explored the association between maternal obesity during pregnancy and the inflammatory markers, tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-6 and high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), and the cytokine, adiponectin, in the offspring. Methods: Weight, height, Tanner stage and biomarkers were measured in thirty-four 12-year-old children, from the Infant Growth Study, who were divided into high risk (HR) and low risk (LR) groups based on maternal pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI). Results: The two groups differed markedly in their hs-CRP levels, but no group difference was found for the other three biomarkers. The odds ratio (OR) of HR children having detectable hs-CRP levels was 16 times greater than that of LR children after adjusting for confounding variables, including BMI z-score, Tanner stages and gender (OR: 16; 95% CI: 2-123). Conclusions: These results suggest that maternal obesity during pregnancy is associated with later development of elevated hs-CRP in the offspring, even after controlling for weight.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)76-79
Number of pages4
JournalWorld Journal of Pediatrics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Children
  • Inflammation
  • Maternal obesity
  • hs-C-reactive protein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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