Effect of paternal folate deficiency on placental folate content and folate receptor ${\alpha}$ expression in rats

  • Kim, Hye-Won ;
  • Choi, Yun-Jung ;
  • Kim, Ki-Nam ;
  • Tamura, Tsunenobu ;
  • Chang, Nam-Soo
  • Received : 2011.02.07
  • Accepted : 2011.04.05
  • Published : 2011.04.28


We investigated the effect of paternal folate status on folate content and expression of the folate transporter folate receptor ${\alpha}$ ($FR{\alpha}$) in rat placental tissues. Rats were mated after males were fed a diet containing 0 mg of folic acid/kg of diet (paternal folate-deficient, PD) or 8 mg folic acid/kg of diet (paternal folate-supplemented, PS) for 4 weeks. At 20 days of gestation, the litter size, placental weight, and fetal weight were measured, and placental folate content (n=8/group) and expression of $FR{\alpha}$ (n=10/group) were analyzed by microbiological assay and Western blot analysis, respectively. Although there was no difference observed in litter size or fetal weight, but significant reduction (10%) in the weight of the placenta was observed in the PD group compared to that in the PS group. In the PD group, placental folate content was significantly lower (by 35%), whereas $FR{\alpha}$ expression was higher (by 130%) compared to the PS group. Our results suggest that paternal folate status plays a critical role in regulating placental folate metabolism and transport.


Paternal folate status;placental folate;placental weight;folate receptor alpha


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