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BioMed Research International
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 9704607, 14 pages
Research Article

Animal Model of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus with Pathophysiological Resemblance to the Human Condition Induced by Multiple Factors (Nutritional, Pharmacological, and Stress) in Rats

1Department of Pharmacology and Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, Universiti Teknologi MARA, 42300 Bandar Puncak Alam, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia
2Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Calgary, 3330 Hospital Drive NW, Calgary, AB, Canada T2N 4N1
3Department of Pharmaceutical and Life Sciences, Faculty of Pharmacy, Universiti Teknologi MARA, 42300 Bandar Puncak Alam, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia
4Immunology Unit, Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), 43400 Serdang, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia

Received 16 March 2016; Accepted 8 May 2016

Academic Editor: Monica Fedele

Copyright © 2016 Siti Hajar Abdul Aziz et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This study attempts to develop an experimental gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) animal model in female Sprague-Dawley rats. Rats were fed with high fat sucrose diet, impregnated, and induced with Streptozotocin and Nicotinamide on gestational day 0 (D0). Sleeping patterns of the rats were also manipulated to induce stress, a lifestyle factor that contributes to GDM. Rats were tested for glycemic parameters (glucose, C-peptide, and insulin), lipid profiles (total cholesterol, triglycerides, HDL, and LDL), genes affecting insulin signaling (IRS-2, AKT-1, and PCK-1), glucose transporters (GLUT-2 and GLUT-4), proinflammatory cytokines (IL-6, TNF-α), and antioxidants (SOD, CAT, and GPX) on D6 and D21. GDM rats showed possible insulin resistance as evidenced by high expression of proinflammatory cytokines, PCK-1 and CRP. Furthermore, low levels of IRS-2 and AKT-1 genes and downregulation of GLUT-4 from the initial to final phases indicate possible defect of insulin signaling. GDM rats also showed an impairment of antioxidant status and a hyperlipidemic state. Additionally, GDM rats exhibited significantly higher body weight and blood glucose and lower plasma insulin level and C-peptide than control. Based on the findings outlined, the current GDM animal model closely replicates the disease state in human and can serve as a reference for future investigations.