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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1993 Oct;169(4):830-4.

Circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1 in amniotic fluid, maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein levels, and intrauterine growth retardation.

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1
Department of Laboratory Medicine, Danbury Hospital, CT 06810.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Our purpose was to determine if circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1, a marker of chronic inflammation, is present in amniotic fluid in midtrimester, is increased in patients with elevated maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein level, and is associated with intrauterine growth retardation.

STUDY DESIGN:

Amniotic fluid circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1 levels were assayed by enzyme-linked immunoassay in 273 samples obtained by midtrimester amniocentesis in gestations involving a single, structurally normal fetus. The control group consisted of 108 patients with normal maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein levels and 165 patients with elevated levels. Intrauterine growth retardation was diagnosed if birth weight was < 10th percentile for the clinically estimated gestational age.

RESULTS:

Circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1 was detectable in amniotic fluid in 105 of 273 samples (38%). In the control group it was detectable in amniotic fluid in seven of 108 (6%). In patients with elevated maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein 97 of 164 (59%) had detectable levels (p < 0.001). Of the 273 cases 38 (14%) had intrauterine growth retardation. Of these 23 (59%) had detectable circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1 levels (p < 0.001). Of the seven cases of intrauterine growth retardation with normal maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein levels, one (14%) had detectable circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1. Of the 31 cases of intrauterine growth retardation with elevated maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein 22 (71%) had detectable circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1. When circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1 was detectable in amniotic fluid, increasing levels was significantly related to decreasing gestational age at delivery (p < 0.005).

CONCLUSIONS:

Midtrimester amniotic fluid from normal pregnancies does not generally contain detectable circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1. Detectable amniotic fluid levels are significantly related to a birth weight < 10th percentile at delivery and to elevated midtrimester maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein levels. Increasing circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1 levels are related to shortened length of gestation. This test may contribute to risk assessment for intrauterine growth retardation and prematurity. Circulating intercellular adhesion molecule-1 is a known marker of inflammatory processes; its further study may also improve understanding of the pathophysiologic mechanisms of certain cases of intrauterine growth retardation and prematurity.

PMID:
7694462
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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