Longitudinal Profiling of Inflammatory Cytokines and C-reactive Protein during Uncomplicated and Preterm Pregnancy

Authors

  • Kelly K. Ferguson,

    1. Department of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
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  • Thomas F. McElrath,

    1. Division of Maternal and Fetal Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA
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  • Yin-Hsiu Chen,

    1. Department of Biostatistics, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
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  • Bhramar Mukherjee,

    1. Department of Biostatistics, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
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  • John D. Meeker

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
    • Correspondence

      John D. Meeker, Department of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan School of Public Health, 1415 Washington Heights, 1835 SPH I, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2029, USA.

      E-mail: meekerj@umich.edu

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Abstract

Problem

Previous studies have investigated the utility of inflammation markers as predictors of preterm birth, but none have compared trends in levels between uncomplicated and preterm pregnancy.

Method of study

We explored longitudinal changes in plasma cytokines, including IL-1β, IL-6, IL-10, and TNF-α, as well as C-reactive protein in pregnant women from a nested case–control study.

Results

IL-6 was associated with increased odds of spontaneous preterm birth, defined by presentation of spontaneous preterm labor and/or preterm premature rupture of the membranes. Associations were strongest later in pregnancy. IL-10 was associated with increased odds of placentally mediated preterm birth, defined by presentation with preeclampsia or intrauterine growth restriction, and odds ratios were also highest near the end of pregnancy.

Conclusion

Maternal inflammation markers were associated with increased risk of preterm birth, and relationships differed by etiology of preterm delivery and gestational age at sample collection.

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