Risk of Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia by Second Trimester Maternal Serum Levels of Alpha-fetoprotein, Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin, and Unconjugated Estriol

Genetic Disease Screening Program, California Department of Public Health, Richmond, California, USA.
Pediatric Research (Impact Factor: 2.31). 04/2012; 71(4 Pt 1):399-406. DOI: 10.1038/pr.2011.73
Source: PubMed


Although maternal serum α-fetoprotein (AFP), human chorionic gonandotropin (hCG), and estriol play important roles in immunomodulation and immunoregulation during pregnancy, their relationship with the development of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) in young infants is unknown despite BPD being associated with pre- and postnatal inflammatory factors.
We found that these serum biomarkers were associated with an increased risk of BPD. Risks were especially high when AFP and/or hCG levels were above the 95th percentile and/or when unconjugated estriol (uE3) levels were below the 5th percentile (relative risks (RRs) 3.1-6.7). Risks increased substantially when two or more biomarker risks were present (RRs 9.9-75.9).
Data suggested that pregnancies that had a biomarker risk and yielded an offspring with BPD were more likely to have other factors present that suggested early intrauterine fetal adaptation to stress, including maternal hypertension and asymmetric growth restriction.
The objective of this population-based study was to examine whether second-trimester levels of AFP, hCG, and uE3 were associated with an increased risk of BPD.

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