The new study led by Adam Watkins revealed that even before conception, maternal diet is vital to the health of the next generation. Even as the egg first leaves the ovary and begins to mature, it is subject to nutritional deficiencies in the mother that can profoundly affect its viability. The researchers conducted the study using a mice model where female mice were on a special low-protein diet during one three-and-a-half day ovulatory cycle, then let the mice mate. After studying the offspring they were found to be suffering from an array of maladies. The study appears in The Journal of Physiology.