Premature babies are subject to a host of threats that can result in fetal/neonatal disease. In a study published in the January 2008 issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, researchers from the University of Alabama–Birmingham Medical School and the Drexel University College of Medicine found that genital mycoplasmas are a frequent cause of congenital fetal infection. 23% of neonates born between 23 and 32 weeks of gestation have positive umbilical blood cultures for two genital mycoplasmas (bacteria lacking cell walls): Ureaplasma urealyticum and Mycoplasma hominis.
Although Ureaplasma urealyticum and Mycoplasma hominis are found in 80% of vaginal and cervical fluids, infants are not generally screened for these bacterial infections. The finding that about one-quarter of early preterm infants is already infected at birth is important in reducing adverse outcomes. These newborns had a higher incidence of neonatal systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS), higher incidence of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), higher serum concentrations of interleukin (IL)-6 and more evidence of placental inflammation than those with negative cultures. The earlier the gestational age at delivery, the higher the rate of a positive umbilical cord blood culture.
The data, derived from the Alabama Preterm Birth Study, included 457 consecutive singleton deliveries of infants born at 23-32 weeks’ gestation from 1996 to 2001. This study focuses on a subset of 351 women/infant pairs in the population who had umbilical cord blood cultures for U. urealyticum and M. hominis.
Writing in the article, Robert Goldenberg, M.D., Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Drexel University College of Medicine, states, “Given the frequency of these infections and their association with SIRS and likely with BPD, it seems reasonable to determine if infants in these categories would benefit from routine culture for Ureaplasma urealyticum and/or Mycoplasma hominis and subsequent treatment with an antibiotic effective against these organisms. Similarly, we question whether treatment of women likely to deliver an early gestational age infant with an antibiotic effective against these organisms might reduce subsequent neonatal morbidity and mortality.”’
In an accompanying editorial, Roberto Romero, MD, Chief of the Perinatology Research Branch and Program Director for Obstetrics and Perinatology at NICHD/NIH; Professor of Molecular Obstetrics and Genetics, Center of Molecular Medicine, Wayne State University, and Thomas J. Garite, MD, Professor Emeritus, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of California, Irvine, comment that the article “provides compelling evidence that congenital fetal infection is more frequent than previously realized. The detection of genital mycoplasmas is not part of routine clinical practice in obstetrics and neonatology. Similarly, standard treatment for suspected neonatal sepsis does not include antibiotics effective against these microorganisms.”
Romero and Garite further state that, “The initial uncertainties of whether genital mycoplasmas can cause fetal/neonatal disease are disappearing in light of the accumulating evidence that these microorganisms have been implicated in neonatal sepsis, pneumonia, meningitis and brain damage. Moreover, colonization of the neonatal respiratory tract with these organisms is a risk factor for chronic lung disease.”
The article is “The Alabama Preterm Birth Study: Umbilical Cord Blood Ureaplasma urealyticum and Mycoplasma hominis Cultures in Very Preterm Newborns” by Robert L Goldenberg, MD; William W Andrews, Ph.D., MD; Alice R Goepfert, MD; Ona Faye-Petersen, MD; Suzanne P Cliver; Waldemar A Carlo, MD; and John C Hauth, MD. The editorial is “Twenty Percent of Very Preterm Neonates (23 to 32 weeks) are Born with Bacteremia due to Genital Mycoplasmas” by Roberto Romero and Thomas J. Garite. Both appear in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Volume 198, Issue 1 (January 2008) published by Elsevier.
Pamela Poppalardo | alfa
Smart Data Transformation – Surfing the Big Wave
02.12.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Informationstechnik FIT
Climate change could outpace EPA Lake Champlain protections
18.11.2016 | University of Vermont
Physicists of the University of Würzburg have made an astonishing discovery in a specific type of topological insulators. The effect is due to the structure of the materials used. The researchers have now published their work in the journal Science.
Topological insulators are currently the hot topic in physics according to the newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Only a few weeks ago, their importance was...
In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
09.12.2016 | Life Sciences
09.12.2016 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation
09.12.2016 | Health and Medicine