The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Fetal programming of body composition and musculoskeletal development

Aihie-Sayer, Avan and Cooper, Cyrus (2005) Fetal programming of body composition and musculoskeletal development Early Human Development, 81, (9), pp. 735-744. (doi:10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2005.07.003).

Record type: Article


The prevalence of obesity, sarcopenia and osteoporosis is rising and there is increasing interest in determinants operating in early life. Fetal programming is the phenomenon whereby alterations in fetal growth and development in response to the prenatal environment have long term or permanent effects. Evidence for fetal programming of body composition and musculoskeletal development comes from epidemiological studies, investigation of the role of early undernutrition and preliminary findings on underlying mechanisms. Low birth weight and poor prenatal nutrition are associated with changes in adult body composition including altered fat distribution, reduced muscle mass and strength, and low bone mineral content. The mechanisms include a direct effect on cell number, altered stem cell function and resetting of regulatory hormonal axes. The next stage is translation of these findings into testable preventive strategies to maintain optimum body composition and minimize the risk of obesity, sarcopenia and osteoporosis in later life.

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Published date: 2005
Keywords: body composition, musculoskeletal development, fetal programming, obesity, sarcopenia, osteoporosis


Local EPrints ID: 25191
ISSN: 0378-3782
PURE UUID: 122d9e3f-4b0b-402c-ab29-3763066e188a
ORCID for Cyrus Cooper: ORCID iD

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 06 Apr 2006
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 16:11

Export record


Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton:

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.