Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Ig G treatment during pregnancy reduces severity of rare, recurring liver condition in newborns

10.11.2004


Treatment with high-dose immunoglobulin G (IgG) during pregnancy lessens the severity of hemochromatosis (NH), a rare, devastating gestational disease with abnormal iron accumulation in the liver and severe liver injury that almost always results in fetal death or acute liver failure in newborns.



In an article in the Nov. 6 issue of The Lancet, researchers Peter F. Whitington, M.D., and Judith U. Hibbard, M.D., described the effectiveness of treating mothers with IgG in reducing liver injury in babies with recurrent NH. Whitington, a noted authority on liver disease, is professor of pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Children’s Memorial Hospital. Hibbard is professor of maternal-fetal medicine, University of Illinois – Chicago and held a similar position at the Pritzker School of Medicine, University of Chicago, during the course of he study.

One of the most devastating aspects of NH to affected families is that after a woman has had one baby with the disorder, her risk for recurrence of NH in another child is 80 percent. A woman may have unaffected children before having the first one with NH. After that, most or all pregnancies end with fetal death or a child born with NH. Currently, there is no test to determine if a pregnancy will be affected, and there is no effective approach to prenatal diagnosis of NH. The best advice available to date for such women is to avoid pregnancy.


Until now, the cause of NH has been unknown. Whitington hypothesized that it is an alloimmune disease based on its unusual pattern of recurrence, which is similar to the known alloimmune diseases hydrops fetalis due to Rh incompatibility and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia. Treatment with IgG has been found effective in the treatment of these alloimmune blood disorders, so Whitington proposed its use in NH.

The positive results of the current study provide support for the theory that recurrent NH is an alloimmune disease. In the study, 15 women whose most recent pregnancy ended in documented NH were treated with intravenous IgG once a week from the 18th week of pregnancy until birth. One woman had two pregnancies.

All 16 pregnancies progressed uneventfully and resulted in live babies with normal physical examination findings and birth weights. Twelve babies showed evidence of liver involvement with NH, including four with significant liver injury, but all of the infants survived with medical or no treatment and are currently healthy, having fully recovered from NH that was blunted by gestational treatment.

In contrast, these women’s previously affected pregnancies almost always resulted in fetal death or a severely affected newborn that was unresponsive to medical treatment.

Whitington and his laboratory group are currently developing a test to detect alloimmune NH; specifically, they are purifying, identifying and cloning candidate fetal proteins for use in blood tests. Other future directions include other clinical trials and creating animal models of NH to further study the disease and perhaps improve postnatal therapy for NH.

Elizabeth Crown | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.northwestern.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Study suggests possible new target for treating and preventing Alzheimer's
02.12.2016 | Oregon Health & Science University

nachricht The first analysis of Ewing's sarcoma methyloma opens doors to new treatments
01.12.2016 | IDIBELL-Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

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...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

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...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>