Líffræðifélag Íslands - biologia.is
Líffræðiráðstefnan 2019

Erindi/veggspjald / Talk/poster E16

Molecular biomarkers for the diagnosis of pre-eclampsia

Höfundar / Authors: Marta S. Alexdóttir (1), Unnur Jóna Björgvinsdóttir (2), Þóra Steingrímsdóttir (1), Guðrún Valdimarsdóttir (1)

Starfsvettvangur / Affiliations: 1. Dept. of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine, BMC, University of Iceland, 2. University Hospital

Kynnir / Presenter: Marta S. Alexdóttir

Mainly defined by high blood pressure and proteinuria, the pregnancy disorder pre-eclampsia (PE) affects 2-8% of all pregnancies and is a leading cause of maternal and fetal mortality worldwide. Abnormal placentation in early pregnancy is thought to be the main reason for the development of the disorder which reconciles with the fact that delivery of the placenta is the only known cure. During normal placental development fetal cytotrophoblasts (CTBs) invade and remodel the maternal spiral arteries transforming them to low resistant vessels, providing sufficient perfusion to sustain fetal growth. In PE the CTBs fail to acquire this invasive property, resulting in an inadequate blood flow through the placenta.
Our data shows that the secreted angiogenic molecule epidermal growth factor-like protein 7 (EGFL7) is a downstream target of BMP9/ALK1 signaling and promotes endothelial sprouting. Junus and colleagues carried out a gene expression analysis of placentae from PE woman which revealed reduced expression of members of the BMP signaling pathway such as EGFL7, Id1 and ALK1. However the soluble form of Endoglin, a co-receptor of BMP9, has shown to be upregulated in PE even though its role is still unclear. Taken together, these components may be utilized as molecular biomarkers for an earlier intervention of the disease. The aim of this project is thus to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of this pathway in hope of obtaining better prognosis and minimizing the risk of PE.