Study finds markers for premature birth risk at the molecular level

February 10, 2005

RENO, NV (Feb. 10, 2005) - For the first time, researchers have successfully profiled the amniotic fluid metabolome (the sum of all metabolic processes occurring in the amniotic fluid), in order to identify which women who have experienced preterm labor are also at risk for delivering a premature baby. With nearly one in eight babies in the U.S. born prematurely every year, and the problem of premature birth increasing, the need for tools that can identify preterm delivery risk has never been greater, experts say.

The news was announced today at the 25th annual Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM) meeting here.

"We studied the amniotic fluid of three groups of patients - those with preterm labor who delivered at term, those with intra-amniotic inflammation who had both preterm labor and delivery, and those with no sign of inflammation who still had preterm labor and delivery," said Roberto Romero, M.D., lead study author and SMFM member. "We discovered that by using metabolic profiling, 96 percent of the time we could correctly identify the patients as belonging to the appropriate clinical group.

"A second study, in a different set of patients with a larger sample size, has already confirmed the effectiveness of our method. Until now, we have never had a way to predict the course of preterm labor with such accuracy. Metabolomic profiling has given us that tool," Dr. Romero said.

"Prematurity is a common, serious, and growing problem in this country," said Nancy S. Green, M.D., medical director of the March of Dimes. "More research to identify and address the risk factors for prematurity are needed if we are to reverse this trend. The innovative nature of this study has earned it our annual award for the best research paper on prematurity."
-end-
The study, "Metabolomics in Premature Labor: A Novel Approach to Identify Patients at Risk for Preterm Delivery," is a joint effort by maternal-fetal medicine specialists from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, and other groups.

This is the second year that the March of Dimes has worked with the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine to identify cutting-edge prematurity research. It is part of the March of Dimes' multi-year, multi-million-dollar prematurity campaign aimed at reducing the growing rate of premature births through research and awareness. For more information on this campaign, visit www.marchofdimes.com/prematurity/. The March of Dimes is a national voluntary health agency whose mission is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects and infant mortality. Founded in 1938, the March of Dimes funds programs of research, community services, education, and advocacy to save babies.

For details on the role that maternal-fetal medicine specialists play in our nation's health, to interview study authors or for other information, contact Sanda Pecina at 703-967-2676 (on-site in Reno).

March of Dimes Foundation

Related Inflammation Articles from Brightsurf:

3D printed stents that treat inflammation
POSTECH Professor Dong-Woo Cho's research team develops bioink-loaded esophageal stents for treating radiation esophagitis.

New cause of inflammation in people with HIV identified
A new study led by researchers at Boston Medical Center examined what factors could be contributing to this inflammation, and they identified the inability to control HIV RNA production from existing HIV DNA as a potential key driver of inflammation.

Maltreatment tied to higher inflammation in girls
New research by a University of Georgia scientist reveals that girls who are maltreated show higher levels of inflammation at an early age than boys who are maltreated or children who have not experienced abuse.

A protein that controls inflammation
A study by the research team of Prof. Geert van Loo (VIB-UGent Center for Inflammation Research) has unraveled a critical molecular mechanism behind autoimmune and inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease, and psoriasis.

Inflammation in the brain linked to several forms of dementia
Inflammation in the brain may be more widely implicated in dementias than was previously thought, suggests new research from the University of Cambridge.

Social isolation could cause physical inflammation
Social isolation could be associated with increased inflammation in the body new research from the University of Surrey and Brunel University London has found.

Hydrogels control inflammation to help healing
Researchers test a sampling of synthetic, biocompatible hydrogels to see how tuning them influences the body's inflammatory response.

Why beta-blockers cause skin inflammation
Beta-blockers are often used to treat high blood pressure and other cardiovascular diseases.

The 'inflammation' of opioid use
New research correlates inflammation in the brain and gut to negative emotional state during opioid withdrawal.

Using a common anticonvulsant to counteract inflammation
The interaction between a chromosomal protein called HMGB1 and a cellular receptor called RAGE is known to trigger inflammation.

Read More: Inflammation News and Inflammation Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.