The term Programing refers to the adaptations of the organism facing insults that occur during important phases in its development (fetal, neonatal and infancy), generating permanent effects, or not, on the structure and the function of the organs. The maternal nutritional state during critical moments in the development of an individual is considered an important Programming-inducing phenomenon, since the nutrient deficiency during pregnancy and lactation causes significant alterations in body mass, in energetic balance, food intake, in neuropeptide expression and in neuroglia. In the central nervous system, these alterations occur mainly in areas that are important for controlling the eating behavior, such as the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) that plays a fundamental role in integrating visceral information of satiety, together with the hypothalamus. The NTS is made from subnuclei with particular cytoarchitectonic and connectivity characteristics that develop during the neonatal and embryonic periods. The signaling related to satiety is widely measured by the primary glutamatergic afferents from the stomach and the duodenum, and modulated by multiple neuropeptides. However, there is no information related to neuroglia's behavior in this paradigm of programing by fetal and perinatal caloric restriction in the NTS. Our goal in this project is comparing the immunoreactivity to the glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), as astrocyte marker, in young adult control rats from whom their mothers were subjected to caloric restriction during pregnancy and lactation. It will be used previously collected material from ongoing research projects in our lab, where the mating of adult rats of the wistar lineage were used to obtain the offspring, from which the male pups will be the subject of study. Upon pregnancy detection, the females were separated for the formation of two experimental groups containing 90 days old animals: the control group (CG), normal diet ad libitum; and the caloric restriction group (RG), diet of 50% restriction in relation to the control group during the periods of pregnancy and lactation. All animals were subjected to transcardiac perfusion for fixation. The brain will be processed for study of the immunoreactivity of GFAP in the NTS that will be analyzed semi-quantitatively, by counting the profiles of astrocytes and both the medium and integrated optical density. The data will be compared and statistically analyzed for its significance (p<0.05).
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