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Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2012 Dec;119(3):234-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ijgo.2012.07.010. Epub 2012 Sep 15.

Syncytiotrophoblast-derived microparticle shedding in early-onset and late-onset severe pre-eclampsia.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Shanghai Sixth People's Hospital, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai, China.



To determine the concentration of syncytiotrophoblast-derived microparticles (STBMs) in the maternal circulation and the rate of syncytiotrophoblast apoptosis in the placenta of patients with early-onset and late-onset severe pre-eclampsia.


A prospective case-control study was conducted that enrolled 15 women with early-onset severe pre-eclampsia, 15 women with late-onset severe pre-eclampsia, and 10 women with normal pregnancies. Plasma STBM levels were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, while placental levels of active caspase-3 were determined by western blotting. Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) were cultured with STBMs and the proliferation and apoptosis rates of the HUVECs assessed.


Levels of STBMs in the early-onset group (71.2 ± 20.7 ng/mL) were significantly higher than those detected in the late-onset group (41.9 ± 29.7 ng/mL) and the control group (26.3 ± 11.2 ng/mL) (P<0.05). The amount of active caspase-3 was increased in the early-onset (0.85 ± 0.61) and late-onset groups (0.77 ± 0.46) relative to the control group (0.32 ± 0.15) (P<0.05). Proliferation of HUVECs was inhibited, while apoptosis was elevated, following co-culture with STBMs.


Shedding of STBMs into the maternal circulation occurs in greater amounts in early-onset pre-eclampsia than in late-onset pre-eclampsia.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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