Population variations in placental micro-RNA expression by self identified maternal race
MetadataShow full item record
With differences in fetal growth patterns observed across racial demographics, interest in possible biological causes for these differences has increased. Prior works have studied the effects of insulin resistance in pregnancy on fetal fat deposition and growth in utero. One proposed mechanism to explain the physiological decrease in insulin sensitivity observed in normal pregnancy is the release of epigenetic factors such as placental miRNAs that have downstream effects on nutrient availability and fetal growth. The aim of this study was to identify placental miRNAs in women of different races and to establish expression patterns between these groups, specifically if expression patterns were related to measures of fetal growth and insulin resistance. Untargeted RNAseq and targeted RT-qPCR techniques were utilized for miRNA expression analysis and validation, respectively. Statistical modeling was used to interpret relationships between miRNA expression and maternal and neonatal body composition variables. qPCR results validated RNA sequencing data of differential miRNA expression between maternal racial groups. While miRNA-34c-5p and 192-5p fold changes were not correlated with maternal insulin resistance (as measured by HOMA-IR) in both non-Hispanic black and non-Hispanic white women, both miRNA-34c-5p and miRNA-192-5p were both positively correlated with neonatal body composition measures in neonates born to NHB women only. Further analysis of more miRNAs from additional RNAseq is planned.