The University of Valencia participates in a project for the early detection of preeclampsia

Carlos Simón and Tamara Garrido.
Carlos Simón and Tamara Garrido.
Carlos Simón, full professor of the Department of Paediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynaecology of the University of Valencia, and coordinator of the Reproductive Medicine Area of the INCLIVA Health Research Institute, of the Clinical Hospital of Valencia, as well as Tamara Garrido, researcher at INCLIVA, lead a study to advance the understanding of preeclampsia, a pregnancy complication that affects 8% of pregnant women and has life-threatening consequences for both mother and foetus.

The research seeks to decipher the molecular origin of resistance to decidualisation in the maternal endometrium using single cell technology, as well as promote its early detection and improve the treatment approach. The project "Identification of maternal cellular and molecular targets at the single cell level for the early prediction and treatment of Preeclampsia (PREdict)" has just been launched and has a duration of four years.

Preeclampsia is considered a public health problem whose main symptoms are high blood pressure accompanied by signs of damage to organs such as the kidneys, liver and brain.

The main problem with this disease is that, although it has its origin at the beginning of pregnancy, its symptoms do not begin to appear until the end of the second or third trimester in women whose blood pressure had been normal until then. Once it manifests itself, the measures to alleviate it are very ineffective and the only definitive cure is to end the pregnancy through delivery of the placenta, and, therefore, of the baby, regardless of the week of pregnancy, which contributes to the increase in premature birth, which affects 1 in 10 births.

Despite the exact triggers of this disease being unknown, the aforementioned INCLIVA research group proved for the first time that patients with severe preeclampsia suffer resistance to decidualisation (DR), a failure that prevents the correct morphological and functional transformation of the endometrium (tissue that lines the interior of the uterus), opening up a pioneering line of research into this pathology and other late complications of pregnancy.

Within the framework of the PREdict project, the INCLIVA Reproductive Medicine Research Group aims to characterise the single-cell transcriptome associated with DR, using state-of-the-art omics technologies. Nerea Castillo and María Teresa Cordero also participate in the project, as well as Irene Muñoz, researchers from the INCLIVA Reproductive Medicine Research Group; Beatriz Marcos, director of the Women’s clinical area at Hospital La Fe, in Valencia; and Rogelio Monfort, obstetrician and researcher at the same hospital.

PREdict ha obtenido una ayuda de 383.750 euros que proviene de la convocatoria 2022 de Proyectos de Generación de Conocimiento de la Agencia Estatal de Investigación del Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación y financiación para un contrato predoctoral asociado a dicha ayuda. Estas ayudas están cofinanciadas por la Unión Europea. PREdict has obtained an aid of 383,750 euros that comes from the 2022 call for Knowledge Generation Projects of the State Research Agency of the Ministry of Science and Innovation and financing for a predoctoral contract associated with said aid. This aid is co-funded by the European Union.