Magnetic resonance imaging detects placental hypoxia and acidosis in mouse models of perturbed pregnancies

Gabriele Bobek*, Tim Stait-Gardner, Laura Surmon, Angela Makris, Joanne M. Lind, William S. Price, Annemarie Hennessy

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)


Endothelial dysfunction as a result of dysregulation of anti-angiogenic molecules secreted by the placenta leads to the maternal hypertensive response characteristic of the pregnancy complication of preeclampsia. Structural abnormalities in the placenta have been proposed to result in altered placental perfusion, placental oxidative stress, cellular damage and inflammation and the release of anti-angiogenic compounds into the maternal circulation. The exact link between these factors is unclear. Here we show, using Magnetic Resonance Imaging as a tool to examine placental changes in mouse models of perturbed pregnancies, that T2 contrast between distinct regions of the placenta is abolished at complete loss of blood flow. Alterations in T2 (spin-spin or transverse) relaxation times are explained as a consequence of hypoxia and acidosis within the tissue. Similar changes are observed in perturbed pregnancies, indicating that acidosis as well as hypoxia may be a feature of pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia and may play a prominent role in the signalling pathways that lead to the increased secretion of anti-angiogenic compounds.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere59971
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 26 Mar 2013
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2013. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

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