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Neurosteroid involvement in threatened preterm labour
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynecology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4367-4959
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynecology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0907-3535
Sundsvalls Research Unit, Department of Clinical Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Umeå University, Sundsvall, Sweden.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynecology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4988-1967
2020 (English)In: Endocrinology, Diabetes & Metabolism, ISSN 2398-9238, Vol. 4, no 2, article id e00216Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Introduction: The neurosteroid allopregnanolone modulates oxytocin expression in the brain, and its effects arise from its action on the GABAA receptor. Whether neurosteroid levels and the function of the GABAA receptor are involved in the risk of preterm labour in pregnant women is unknown.

Methods: Pregnant women with (n = 16) or without (n = 20) threatened preterm labour (TPL) in gestational week 33 + 6 days to 37 + 0 days were studied prospectively with procedures including foetal heart rate monitoring, vaginal examination, ultrasound examination and blood tests to determine allopregnanolone, progesterone and oxytocin levels. The GABAA receptor function in both groups was measured with a saccadic eye velocity test (SEVT).

Results: Plasma oxytocin levels were higher in the TPL group than in the control group (41.5 vs. 37.0 pmol/L, respectively, p = .021). Although the allopregnanolone and progesterone levels in both groups did not differ, there was a negative association between blood oxytocin and allopregnanolone (as predictor) levels in the TPL group (B: −3.2, 95% confidence interval (CI): −5.5 to −0.9, p = .012). As a predictor of TPL, progesterone was associated with cervix maturity (odds ratio: 1.02, 95% CI: 1.00–1.04, p = .038). SEVT showed that the women in both groups had similar GABAA receptor functions. In both groups, body mass index correlated with peak saccadic eye velocity (r = .34, p = .044) and negatively with allopregnanolone (r = −.41, p = .013).

Conclusions: Neurosteroid levels were unchanged in the peripheral blood of women with TPL, despite the increase in available oxytocin. Although the function of the GABAA receptor was unchanged in women with TPL, to ensure reliable results, saccadic eye velocity should be investigated during a challenge test with a GABAA receptor agonist.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sussex: John Wiley & Sons, 2020. Vol. 4, no 2, article id e00216
Keywords [en]
allopregnanolone, GABAA receptor, oxytocin, progesterone, saccadic eye velocity
National Category
Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-182302DOI: 10.1002/edm2.216ISI: 000710537500024PubMedID: 33855217Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85097498577OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-182302DiVA, id: diva2:1545176
Available from: 2021-04-19 Created: 2021-04-19 Last updated: 2023-09-05Bibliographically approved

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Turkmen, SahruhBäckström, TorbjörnBixo, Marie

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