Serum cholesterol, triglycerides and lipoprotein cholesterol were measured in cord bloods from 117 newborns. Group I consisted of 39 infants of diabetic mothers and Group II (control) consisted of 78 newborns of non-diabetic mothers. The most significant difference in serum lipids between the two groups was the higher levels of LDL cholesterol and lower levels of HDL cholesterol in the newborns of diabetic mothers. Cord blood serum cholesterol was slightly, but not significantly, higher in children born of diabetic mothers. Serum triglycerides were also not significantly different between the groups. While it remains to be established whether elevated levels of LDL cholesterol and decreased levels of HDL cholesterol at birth in these infants represent a transient phenomenon, this study suggests that newborns of diabetic mothers may be predisposed early in life to LDL hypercholesterolemia and thus may be at a greater risk of developing coronary heart disease later in life.
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