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Clin Chem. 1999 Feb;45(2):184-8.

Quantitative abnormalities of fetal DNA in maternal serum in preeclampsia.

Author information

  • 1Departments of Chemical Pathology, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Prince of Wales Hospital, Shatin, New Territories, Hong Kong SAR. loym@cuhk.edu.hk

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

There is much recent interest in the biologic and diagnostic implication of cell-free non-host DNA in the plasma and serum of human subjects. To determine if quantitative abnormalities of circulating non-host DNA may be associated with certain pathologic processes, we used circulating fetal DNA in preeclampsia as a model system.

METHODS:

We studied 20 preeclamptic women and 20 control subjects of comparable gestational age (means, 32 and 33 weeks, respectively). Male fetal DNA in maternal serum was measured using real-time quantitative PCR for the SRY gene on the Y chromosome.

RESULTS:

The imprecision (CV) of the assay was 2.7%. The median circulating fetal DNA was increased fivefold in 20 preeclamptic women compared with 20 control pregnant women (381 vs 76 genome-equivalents/mL, P <0.001).

CONCLUSIONS:

These observations suggest that preeclampsia is associated with disturbances in the liberation and/or clearance mechanisms of circulating DNA. These results also raise the possibility that measurement of circulating DNA may prove useful as a marker for the diagnosis and/or monitoring of preeclampsia.

PMID:
9931039
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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