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AMP-ACTIVATED PROTEIN KINASE AND GLUCOSE TRANSPORTERS IN SHEEP PLACENTA
The placenta is a unique organ of pregnancy, which plays an essential role in nutrient and waste product exchange between mothers to fetuses, and supports fetal growth and development. Glucose is the main nutrient for fetal growth and development and, thus, cross-placental glucose transport is essential for proper fetal development. However, currently the mechanisms controlling cross-placental glucose transport remains poorly defined. The overall hypothesis is that AMPK, an enzyme controlling glucose metabolism, has key roles in the regulation of cross-placental glucose transport. The objective of this proposal is to examine the association between AMPK and cross-placental glucose transport through both in vitro and in vivo studies. It is anticipated that AMPK has a key role in the regulation of cross-placental glucose delivery; fetal glucose supply is maintained a relatively constant through changing AMPK activity. By establishing the relationship between AMPK and glucose transporters in placental tissues, the proposed studies will provide crucial preliminary data to address underlying mechanisms regulating cross-placental nutrient delivery in response to a variety of challenges. Such knowledge will allow us to ensure proper nutrient delivery to fetuses, improving fetal development and the growth performance of offspring.
USDA CRIS Project Information Link: 0214135