News | Clinical Trials | November 07, 2019

Study Shows Placenta Imaging Method May Aid Early Diagnosis of Pregnancy Complications

Unlike other technologies for imaging the placenta, pCASL MRI can distinguish maternal blood from fetal blood

Image courtesy of Pixabay

November 7, 2019 — A new imaging technique to track maternal blood flow to the placenta has the potential to help diagnose several common complications in early pregnancy, according to a study funded by the National Institutes of Health. Researchers used the technique, referred to as pseudo-continuous arterial spin labeling magnetic resonance imaging (pCASL MRI), to identify women with reduced placental blood flow who later developed one or more complications. The study was conducted by Sherin U. Devasker, M.D., of the University of California, Los Angeles, and colleagues. It appears in the Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging.

Early in pregnancy, cells of the placenta cause uterine arteries to widen, increasing the supply of maternal blood. Failure of these blood vessels to enlarge sufficiently is thought to cause a number of potential complications. For the study, researchers classified these complications as ischemic placental disease (IPD), which includes preeclampsia (a life-threatening blood pressure disorder), intrauterine growth restriction (failure of the fetus to grow normally), and preterm birth.

The researchers scanned the placentas of 69 women, first at 14 to 18 weeks of pregnancy and then at 19 to 24 weeks. Unlike other technologies for imaging the placenta, pCASL MRI can distinguish maternal blood from fetal blood. A total of 15 pregnancies were ultimately identified as having one or more IPD conditions. Compared to the women without IPD, those with IPD had lower blood supply to the placenta at each of the two scans.

If the study results are confirmed, the method may provide a way to diagnose women at risk for ischemic placental disease in early pregnancy. Funding for the study was provided by NIH’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) as part of its Human Placenta Project, a research effort to understand the role of the placenta in health and disease.

You can read the article here: Liu, D. Human placenta blood flow during early gestation with pseudo-continuous arterial spin labeling MRI. TITLE. Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging. 2019. DOI: 10.1002/jmri.26944.

For more information: www.nih.gov

Related Content

The study finds it's possible to use commercial facial recognition software to identify people from brain MRI that includes imagery of the face
News | Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) | November 15, 2019
November 15, 2019 — Though identifying data typically are removed from medical image files before they are shared for
Image by Pexels from Pixabay RSNA 2019

Image by Pexels from Pixabay 

News | RSNA | November 15, 2019
November 15, 2019 – The 105th Scientific Assembly and Annual Meeting of the...
62-year-old woman with pure ground-glass nodules (GGN). PET/CT fusion image shows pure GGN with tumor maximum standardized uptake value of 2.8 (circle).

62-year-old woman with pure ground-glass nodules (GGN). PET/CT fusion image shows pure GGN with tumor maximum standardized uptake value of 2.8 (circle).

News | PET-CT | November 15, 2019
November 15, 2019 — According to an article published ahead-of-print in the...
Mindray announced its partnership with Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, one of the top children's hospitals in the United States
News | Ultrasound Imaging | November 13, 2019
November 13, 2019 – Mindray announced its partnership with...
An image on Brigham and Women's Hospital's 7T MRI system

An image on Brigham and Women's Hospital's 7T MRI system. Image courtesy of Brigham and Women's Hospital

News | Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) | November 13, 2019
November 13, 2019 — Increased immune system activity along the surface of the brain, or meningeal inflammation, may b
The ALS produces various wavelengths of bright light that can be used to explore the microscopic chemistry, structure, and other properties of samples

Two researchers from Cairo University in Egypt brought 32 bone samples and two soil samples to study using X-ray and infrared light-based techniques at Berkeley Lab's Advanced Light Source (ALS). The ALS produces various wavelengths of bright light that can be used to explore the microscopic chemistry, structure, and other properties of samples. Image courtesy of Marilyn Sargent/Berkeley Lab

News | Radiology Imaging | November 13, 2019
November 13, 2019 — Experiments at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (...
Radiographer Apollo Exconde with his Lego concept open MRI for patient education.

Radiographer Apollo Exconde with his Lego concept open MRI for patient education.

News | Patient Engagement | November 11, 2019
November 11, 2019 — Radiographer Apollo Exconde...
Image by Dr. Manuel González Reyes from Pixabay

Image by Dr. Manuel González Reyes from Pixabay 

News | SPECT Imaging | November 08, 2019
November 8, 2019 — Using ground-breaking technology, researchers at the...