Journal article

Quantifying circulating hypoxia-induced RNA transcripts in maternal blood to determine in utero fetal hypoxic status

Clare Whitehead, Wan Tinn Teh, Susan P Walker, Cheryl Leung, Sonali Mendis, Luke Larmour, Stephen Tong



BACKGROUND: Hypoxia in utero can lead to stillbirth and severe perinatal injury. While current prenatal tests can identify fetuses that are hypoxic, none can determine the severity of hypoxia/acidemia. We hypothesized a hypoxic/acidemic fetus would up-regulate and release hypoxia-induced mRNA from the fetoplacental unit into the maternal circulation, where they can be sampled and quantified. Furthermore, we hypothesized the abundance of hypoxia induced mRNA in the maternal circulation would correlate with severity of fetal hypoxia/acidemia in utero. We therefore examined whether abundance of hypoxia-induced mRNA in the maternal circulation correlates with the degree of fetal hypoxia in utero..

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Awarded by National Health and Medical Research Council

Funding Acknowledgements

We thank study participants for donating tissues and clinical midwives for helping with sample collection. This research was supported by The National Health and Medical Research Council (#1028521 #1050765), The Viertel Charitable Foundation, Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (Arthur Wilson Fellowship, Luke Proposch Perinatal Scholarship) and ANZ Trustees.