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Obstet Gynecol Surv. 2001 Jul;56(7):433-6.

Cerebral palsy and chorioamnionitis: the inflammatory cytokine link.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada.


Cerebral palsy remains a significant cause of perinatal morbidity in medically developed countries. Human epidemiologic data suggest a relationship between cerebral palsy and chorioamnionitis mediated by proinflammatory cytokines. This association has been confirmed by experimental data from human and animal research that demonstrate an increase in cytokine levels in the amniotic fluid of cases of white matter damage. Recent evidence suggests this damage is the result of a fetal inflammatory response initiated in response to placental inflammation. The strong association between cerebral palsy and chorioamnionitis warrants additional investigation into the mechanisms by which white matter damage is initiated and into possible neuroprotective treatments to prevent the development of cerebral palsy.

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