Objective To investigate whether pregnancies with development of subsequent pre-eclampsia and intrauterine growth restriction are associated with altered levels of kisspeptin in maternal serum in the second trimester.
Study Design Retrospective case-control study of 16-20 week serum samples matched for duration of storage at -70 degrees C. Levels of kisspeptin were measured in serum from women with pregnancies with subsequent development of pre-eclampsia (n = 57), intra-uterine growth restriction (n = H 8), and matched controls (n = 317).
Results Serum kisspeptin levels were significantly lower in those women who subsequently developed pre-eclampsia than in controls [median (quartile range) 1109 (449) vs 1188 (365) pg/mL, p = 0.029] and in those with intra-uterine growth restriction [1164 (386) vs 1188 (365) pg/mL, p = 0.016].
Conclusions Kisspeptin levels are lower in maternal serum in the second trimester, in pregnancies associated with placental dysfunction. The differences in kisspeptin are modest, so although not forming a single screening marker in pre-eclampsia and intra-uterine growth restriction, measurement of kisspeptin may be useful in combination with other markers. Understanding the role of kisspeptin in the establishment of the placenta [nay further our knowledge of the mechanisms underlying placental function. Copyright (C) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.