Author(s): Laatikainen T, Virtanen T, Kaaja R, SalminenLappalainen K
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Abstract The concentration of corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) in maternal plasma increases greatly during the last trimester of normal pregnancy. This CRH has been proposed to originate from the placenta. We studied plasma immunoreactive CRH in 46 uncomplicated pregnancies, in 10 pregnant women with chronic hypertension, in 17 women with pregnancy-induced hypertension (PIH) and in 24 women with pre-eclampsia, and correlated it to the levels of corticotropin (ACTH) and cortisol. CRH levels were greatly increased in women with pre-eclampsia, less significantly in women with PIH, while no change was found in pregnant women with chronic hypertension. ACTH levels also were increased in pregnancies with pre-eclampsia or PIH and there was a positive correlation between CRH and ACTH levels. CRH levels in cord venous plasma were significantly increased in pregnancies with pre-eclampsia but cortisol did not show any significant increase. These findings suggest that placental release of CRH into the maternal and fetal circulation is increased in pre-eclampsia.
This article was published in Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol
and referenced in Journal of Cell Science & Therapy