Sunday February 17, 2019

Foetal Immune Rejection Could be the Reason of Preterm Labor

For the new study, published in the journal Science Translational Medicine, the team tested umbilical cord blood, which contains foetal cells, along with blood taken from nearly 200 women who had healthy pregnancies and those who went into early labour.

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pregnant, cesarean
However, when it comes to vaginal delivery, the first thought that crosses most womens' minds is of the labour pain which develops a fear of the VBAC, Pixabay

Foetal immune rejection may be one of the causes for preterm labour — a common pregnancy complication leading to birth occurring before the 37th week of pregnancy, researchers say.

The findings showed that it may sometimes happen when the foetal immune system “wakes up” too early and begins to reject the mother, causing the uterus to start contracting.

The researchers think the foetal immune system becomes triggered in a case of mistaken identity.

The findings showed that it may sometimes happen when the foetal immune system "wakes up" too early and begins to reject the mother, causing the uterus to start contracting.
Representational Image, pexels

An initial infection in the mother can result in inflammation and arouse the foetal immune system. The foetal immune cells confuse the mother’s cells for an invader and mount an attack, in the form of inflammatory chemicals.

These chemicals then trigger contractions, leading to preterm labour, the leading cause of infant mortality, the researchers explained.

“The dogma has always been that the foetus has a very immature immune system, and as a result, people haven’t really considered its possible role in pregnancy complications,” said Tippi MacKenzie, Associate Professor at the University of California-San Francisco.

“We showed that in patients who have preterm labour as a result of some kind of infection or inflammation — the most common cause of preterm labour — the foetal immune system awakens prematurely and may trigger labour,” MacKenzie added.

For the new study, published in the journal Science Translational Medicine, the team tested umbilical cord blood, which contains foetal cells, along with blood taken from nearly 200 women who had healthy pregnancies and those who went into early labour.

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While the scientists saw no signs of an immune response in the mother’s blood, they instead, detected activation in two types of immune cells — T-cells and dendritic cells — in the cord blood of preterm infants.

The researchers also found greater numbers of the mother’s cells circulating in the cord blood of preterm infants. (IANS)

Next Story

Study Claims, There Should Be Treatment Options Given for Miscarriage

Miscarriage is the most common complication of pregnancy and affects an estimated one in four pregnancies. 

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Miscarriage is the most common complication of pregnancy and affects an estimated one in four pregnancies. Pixabay

Though miscarriage is a traumatic experience for both parents, resulting in feelings of loss and grief that in some cases can lead to anxiety and depression, women experiencing miscarriage should be offered a choice in the treatment they receive, suggests a study.

Miscarriage is the most common complication of pregnancy and affects an estimated one in four pregnancies.

Although guidelines recommend trying to resolve an unsuccessful pregnancy naturally, the new analysis shows that this is only successful in 70 per cent of cases, and potentially comes with complications that are rarely communicated to patients.

baby
Some women are more keen on having a quick surgical intervention so that they can resume their lifestyle immediately, some are very keen to avoid surgery and prefer to go with a tablet, and others want to take a more natural approach,” Wattar added. Pixabay

The study from the University of Warwick and Queen Mary University of London, demonstrates little to no difference in medical effectiveness in resolving an unsuccessful pregnancy between medical and surgical options.

Thus, the team recommend the doctors to offer women a choice of treatment options for miscarriage to enable them to make an informed decision that takes account of potential uncomfortable side effects, long waiting times and extended periods of recovery.

“What we have to do is provide women with evidence about the benefits and effectiveness of each treatment option and potential side effects so that they can choose what they feel most comfortable with,” said lead author Bassel Wattar from Warwick Medical School.

“Some women are more keen on having a quick surgical intervention so that they can resume their lifestyle immediately, some are very keen to avoid surgery and prefer to go with a tablet, and others want to take a more natural approach,” Wattar added.

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Miscarriage is the most common complication of pregnancy and affects an estimated one in four pregnancies. Pixabay

For the results, published in the journal Human Reproduction Update, the team reviewed 46 trials involving over 9,000 women who experienced spontaneous loss of pregnancy (miscarriage) before 14 weeks gestation.
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During a miscarriage, the body will aim to resolve the unsuccessful pregnancy naturally but conservative treatment can be painful with increased bleeding, increased likelihood of hospital admission, reduced quality of treatment and reduced satisfaction.

However, surgery which include electric vacuum aspiration, and medical treatment with a tablet were found to have similar effectiveness in treating miscarriage as conservative treatment. (IANS)