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 Rabies viruses reveal wiring in transparent brains
19.01.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht On track to heal leukaemia
18.01.2017 | Universitätsspital Bern

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: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Global threat to primates concerns us all

19.01.2017 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation

Scientist from Kiel University coordinates Million Euros Project in Inflammation Research

19.01.2017 | Awards Funding

The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents

19.01.2017 | Studies and Analyses

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>