Effects of diet-induced obesity on metabolic parameters and reproductive function in female Ossabaw minipigs. Academic Article uri icon


  • This study characterizes the effect of an excess-calorie, high-fat, high-cholesterol, high-fructose diet on metabolic parameters and reproductive function in female Ossabaw minipigs. Cycling sows were fed a hypercaloric, high-fat, high-cholesterol, and high-fructose diet (obese, n = 4) or a control diet (control, n = 5) for 13 mo. During the final 4 mo, ovarian ultrasonography was done, blood was collected, and weights and measures were taken. Pigs then underwent ovarian stimulation. Cycle length and androstenedione, total testosterone, progesterone, estradiol, follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, insulin, fructosamine, lipid, and glucose levels were measured. In addition, adipose tissue aromatase gene expression was assessed. As compared with control pigs, obese pigs were hyperglycemic and hyperinsulinemic; had elevated total cholesterol, triglyceride, and leptin levels, and demonstrated abdominal adiposity. Visceral adipose tissue of obese pigs, as compared with control pigs, showed increased aromatase gene expression. Obese pigs had longer estrous cycles, higher serum androstenedione, and higher luteal phase serum luteinizing hormone, compared with control pigs. During the luteal phase, obese pigs had more medium, ovulatory, and cystic ovarian follicles, whereas control pigs had more small ovarian follicles. When fed an excess-calorie, high-fat, high-cholesterol, high-fructose diet, female Ossabaw minipigs develop obesity, metabolic syndrome, and abnormal reproductive function. This animal model may be applicable to studies of the effects of obesity on fertility in women.

published proceedings

  • Comp Med

author list (cited authors)

  • Newell-Fugate, A. E., Taibl, J. N., Clark, S. G., Alloosh, M., Sturek, M., & Krisher, R. L.

citation count

  • 31

complete list of authors

  • Newell-Fugate, Annie E||Taibl, Jessica N||Clark, Sherrie G||Alloosh, Mouhamad||Sturek, Michael||Krisher, Rebecca L

publication date

  • February 2014