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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Predicting complications of pregnancy with first-trimester maternal serum free-betahCG, PAPP-A and inhibin-A.

OBJECTIVE: To find whether fbetahCG, PAPP-A and inhibin-A levels in maternal serum or fetal nuchal translucency (NT) thickness at the first-trimester screening for trisomy 21 (T21) might detect women at high risk for adverse pregnancy outcomes. METHODS: A retrospective analysis of 1136 women with singleton pregnancy between 10 and 14 weeks. Women with pregnancy complications were allotted to five subgroups: small for gestational age (SGA), large for gestational age (LGA), gestational diabetes (GDM), hypertensive disorders, preterm delivery; women with normal pregnancy represented the control group. NT, maternal serum fbetahCG, PAPP-A and inhibin-A were measured. Mann-Whitney test was used for the comparison of fbetahCG, PAPP-A, inhibin-A and NT between a subgroup of a certain pregnancy complication and the control group. Multivariate logistic regression models were built to explore the relationship among different variables and the occurrence of pregnancy complications. RESULTS: PAPP-A values were significantly lower in women who delivered SGA babies (n=51, 0.76 MoM; p=0.002) and significantly higher in women who delivered LGA babies (n=120, 1.12 MoM; p=0.036). In women with GDM (n=27), fbetahCG, PAPP-A and inhibin-A were insignificantly lower than in controls, whereas in women with hypertensive disorders (n=56) no significant differences between the groups were found. In women with a preterm delivery (<34 weeks) (n=17), inhibin-A levels were significantly higher (1.25 MoM; p=0.015). CONCLUSION: Low PAPP-A level is associated with the delivery of an SGA baby and high PAPP-A with the delivery of an LGA baby. High inhibin-A is associated with preterm delivery before 34 weeks. Feto-placental products in the first trimester do not prove to be useful as a screening tool for predicting pregnancy complications.[1]


  1. Predicting complications of pregnancy with first-trimester maternal serum free-betahCG, PAPP-A and inhibin-A. Tul, N., Pusenjak, S., Osredkar, J., Spencer, K., Novak-Antolic, Z. Prenat. Diagn. (2003) [Pubmed]
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