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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1999 Aug;181(2):430-4.

Lipoprotein metabolism during normal pregnancy.

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  • 1Institute of Clinical Medicine, Institute of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Sassari, Italy.



We sought to investigate the changes in circulating serum lipids and lipoproteins, including lipoprotein (a), and low-density lipoprotein size in women during normal pregnancy.


Twenty-two women (mean age, 31 +/- 5 years; 13 primiparous subjects) were studied during uncomplicated pregnancy with normal outcome. Twenty-four nulliparous women of similar age (31 +/- 4 years) were studied as control subjects.


Serum triglycerides and total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol increased significantly during pregnancy in all women. Women with changes in low-density lipoprotein during the second and third trimesters showed a more marked increase in serum triglycerides, and this effect was slightly more evident in the multiparous subjects. No other differences were evident between primiparous and multiparous women apart from high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels, which were slightly decreased in the latter subjects.


Our results show that during normal pregnancy, the increase in plasma triglycerides may lead to the appearance of the atherogenic dense low-density lipoproteins in a subgroup of women. We suggest that the observed changes in low-density lipoprotein patterns during pregnancy might be used to identify those women who later in life will have these atherogenic small and dense low-density lipoproteins.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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