Reproduction, Fertility and Development Reproduction, Fertility and Development Society
Vertebrate reproductive science and technology

Just Accepted

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Changes in bone turnover and calcium homeostasis during pregnancy and lactation in mammals: A meta-analysis

Diego Alejandro Torres , Mariella Freitas , Reggiani Gonçalves


Large amounts of calcium are required during pregnancy and lactation to allow fetus and newborn bone growth and calcification. An inadequate supply of calcium during these stages can lead to unsuccessfully reproduction or impaired offspring fitness. During reproduction, mammals developed different physiological changes, including adaptations to allow an adequate supply of calcium. The lack of quantitative studies that analyze these changes from a comparative perspective limits our ability to explain and understand these changes. In this work, we performed a meta-analysis of studies that report changes in bone turnover and calcium homeostasis during pregnancy and lactation in 14 species of mammals. Our meta-analysis from 60 studies showed that all species have a similar pattern of physiological changes during pregnancy and lactation, which include: (1) decreased serum calcium concentrations, (2) bone tissue loss, (3) decreased serum calcitonin and parathyroid hormone concentrations (4) increased serum calcitriol concentration, regardless of changes in parathyroid hormone concentrations. In addition, we found a negative relationship between: 1) serum calcium concentrations and the number of teats and 2) parathyroid hormone serum concentrations and litter mass.

RD17163  Accepted 05 October 2017

© CSIRO 2017