Higher Oily Fish Consumption in Late Pregnancy is Associated With Reduced Aortic Stiffness in the Child at Age 9 Years
Rationale: Higher pulse wave velocity (PWV) reflects increased arterial stiffness and is an established cardiovascular risk marker associated with lower long-chain n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid intake in adults. Experimentally, maternal fatty acid intake in pregnancy has lasting effects on offspring arterial stiffness.
Objective: To examine the association between maternal consumption of oily fish, a source of long-chain n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, in pregnancy and child's aortic stiffness age 9 years.
Methods and Results: In a mother-offspring study (Southampton Women's Survey) the child's descending aorta PWV was measured at age 9 years using velocity-encoded phase contrast magnetic resonance imaging and related to maternal oily fish consumption assessed prospectively during pregnancy. Higher oily fish consumption in late pregnancy was associated with lower childhood aortic PWV (sex-adjusted β=-0.084 m/s /portion/week, [95% CI -0.137 to -0.031], p=0.002, n=226). Mother's educational attainment was independently associated with child's PWV. PWV was not associated with the child's current oily fish consumption.
Conclusions: Level of maternal oily fish consumption in pregnancy may influence child's large artery development, with potential long-term consequences for later cardiovascular risk.
- Received August 29, 2014.
- Revision received February 16, 2015.
- Accepted February 19, 2015.