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Placental Growth Factor informed management of suspected pre-eclampsia or fetal growth restriction: The MAPPLE cohort study

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Andrew Sharp, Lucy C Chappell, Gustaaf Dekker, Sanja Pelletier, Yves Garnier, Onur Zeren, Katharina M Hillerer, Thorsten Fischer, Paul T Seed, Mark Turner, Andrew H Shennan, Zarko Alfirevic

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages18
JournalPregnancy Hypertension
Early online date26 Mar 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 26 Mar 2018


King's Authors


OBJECTIVES: Placental Growth Factor (PlGF) has been shown to be beneficial in diagnosing pre-eclampsia. We performed a prospective cohort study of revealed PlGF in standard clinical use in four teaching hospitals in UK, Germany, Austria and Australia.

STUDY DESIGN: Clinical data from women with suspected pre-eclampsia or fetal growth restriction <35 weeks' gestation with revealed PlGF measurement were collected (MAPPLE study).

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Data were compared to the PELICAN study (PlGF concealed). Pre-specified outcomes were compared using standard statistical tests (median difference or Risk Ratio). The results were further categorised by PlGF concentration: i) very low (<12 pg/ml), ii) low (12-100 pg/ml), iii) normal (>100 pg/ml).

RESULTS: 396 women managed with revealed PlGF (MAPPLE) were compared with 287 women with concealed PlGF (PELICAN). Revealed PlGF led to delivery 1.4 weeks earlier (-2.0 to -0.9, 34.9 weeks vs 36.7 weeks). There were no significant differences in maternal adverse outcomes (11.9% vs 10.1%, Risk Ratio (RR) 1.17, 95% CI 0.76-1.82) or caesarean sections (73.8% vs 64.5%; RR 1.14, 95% CI 1.03-1.26). Revealed PlGF led to fewer perinatal deaths (2 vs 9; RR 0.16, 95% CI 0.03-0.74) and fewer babies with birthweight <3rd centile (28.9% vs 36.1%; RR 0.80, 0.65-0.99), but with more neonatal adverse outcomes (30.4% vs 17.1%; RR 1.78, 95% CI 1.32-2.41).

CONCLUSIONS: Revealed PlGF may be associated with lower perinatal mortality and birthweight <3rd centile but appears to lead to earlier delivery with more neonatal respiratory morbidity. Randomised trials with adequate power for clinical outcomes are needed.

FUNDING: Financial assistance was received from Alere to support the running of the MAPPLE database. Alere had no access to the information or control over the database itself.

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