Maternal Plasma 6-Keto Prostaglandin F1α in Preclampsia

Augusta Simpson Roth, Yale University


The possibility of decreased prostacyclin (FGI2) in preeclampsia-eclampsia is currently being studied by several laboritories. Because of prostacyclin's various actions (platelet aggregation inhibition, vasodilation, stimulation of renin release, and possible inhibition of the hypertensive effects of angiotensin II), an increase in the peripheral activity of this chemical could explain much of the altered physiology of normal pregnancy. A relative decrease in peripheral activity could tie together the various pathophysiological findings of preeclampsia-eclampsia. Therefore, plasma 6-keto PGFxa, the stable nonenzymatic metabolite of prostacyclin, was measured in women with pre eclampsia, and in those women of various gestational ages having a normal pregnancy. The detection method, radioimmuno assay, could not be internally validated. It appears that the major problem with the assay was in sample preparation. Plasma 6-keto PGFxa may be elevated in normal pregnancy. A decrease in plasma values was seen in those with preeclamp sia as compared to normals of the same gestational age. In addition, plasma 6-keto PGFxa was found to correlate with platelet count in the preeclamptic women. The results of this study cannot be accepted as reliable, but instead should be accepted as impetus for further study. Gas- Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS) of some of the samples could be used for verification of this work. Platelet aggregation inhibition bioassay, along with confirmation by GC-MS , would be the best method for future study. If PGI2 activity and concentrations are found to truly be decreased, not only would tne mechanism of preeclampsia-eclampsia become more clear, but a more acceptable treatment for the disease would be suggested.