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Br J Obstet Gynaecol. 1999 Oct;106(10):1019-22.

Selective deficit of angiogenic growth factors characterises pregnancies complicated by pre-eclampsia.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, St Elisabeth Hospital, Red Cross Blood Bank, Curaçao, Netherlands Antilles.



To compare serum levels of angiogenic growth factors vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), placental growth factor (PlGF) and angiogenin in pre-eclamptic women and matched controls.


Retrospective analysis of -70 degrees C stored serum of women who developed pre-eclampsia and matched controls.


Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, St Elisabeth Hospital, Curaçao, Netherlands Antilles.


Thirty women with pre-eclampsia and 30 normotensive controls matched for age and gestation.


VEGF and PIGF serum levels were significantly lower in pre-eclamptic pregnancies, compared with controls (VEGF 0.31 +/- 1.20 vs 18.30 +/- 24.97 pg/mL, P = 0.0004; PlGF 54.19 +/- 32.05 vs 497.95 +/- 340.51 pg/mL, P < 0.0001). Matched couple analysis showed VEGF serum concentrations to be lower in the majority of pre-eclamptic women and PlGF concentrations to be lower in all pre-eclamptic women. Angiogenin serum levels showed no statistical significant difference between pre-eclamptic pregnancies and controls (523.68 +/- 367.55 vs 670.41 +/- 251.54 ng/mL, P = 0.058), with matched couple analysis showing no clear pattern.


Decreased serum levels of VEGF and PIGF characterise, and therefore seem to be of importance during (the development of), pre-eclampsia. This selective deficit of angiogenic growth factors might in part explain the shallow placentation found in this pregnancy complication.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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