JOURNAL OF SHANGHAI JIAOTONG UNIVERSITY (MEDICAL SCIENCE) ›› 2021, Vol. 41 ›› Issue (8): 1120-1124.doi: 10.3969/j.issn.1674-8115.2021.08.021

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Research progress of DNA methylation in gestational diabetes mellitus

Dan WU(), Li-ping GE()   

  1. Department of Obstetrics, Nanning Red Cross Hospital, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Nanning 530012, China
  • Online:2021-08-28 Published:2021-07-28
  • Contact: Li-ping GE;
  • Supported by:
    Nanning Scientific Research and Technology Development Plan(ZS20150088)


Gestational diabetes mellitus refers to patients with normal glucose metabolism before pregnancy and getting abnormal glucose tolerance during pregnancy. It is characterized by decreased insulin sensitivity of adipose and muscle tissues and abnormal blood glucose levels in the body. This disease can seriously affect the maternal and fetal health, and the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus and other metabolic diseases in the postpartum period and the offsprings significantly increased. It has been found that epigenetic modifications such as DNA methylation can be involved in the pathogenesis of gestational diabetes mellitus and the occurrence of maternal and fetal complications. The differences in gene methylation levels appear in the various clinical specimens of patients with gestational diabetes mellitus, such as placentas, umbilical cord blood, peripheral blood and adipose tissues. It can also affect all the lives of the offsprings through “fetal programming”. In this paper, the research progress of DNA methylation in gestational diabetes mellitus is reviewed.

Key words: gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), epigenetic modification, DNA methylation, fetal programming, metabolic pattern

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