Researchers find 'predictor' for pregnant women who may miscarry

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Washington, Mar 14 : All women need not worry about whether r not they will be able to have a trouble-free pregnancy, for esearchers at the University of Leicester have identified a redictor for expecting women whose pregnancy may end in a iscarriage.

This predictor, they say, is the level of a naturally occurring cannabis' (an endocannabinoid) known as anandamide.

The researchers, led by Professor Justin Konje, found that women ho had higher levels of anandamide during the course of their regnancy had a greater chance of miscarrying.

He and his team had previously reported that the levels of these ndocannabinoids fall during the early period of pregnancy and ise towards term.

He said: "We are extremely excited by these findings. ssentially, we have for the first time been able to use the evels of this naturally occurring cannabis, anandamide in 45 omen presenting with threatened miscarriage and a viable regnancy to predict the eventual outcome of the pregnancy."

"Using a threshold we defined from this study, we were able to redict all the women who then went on to have a subsequent iscarriage and 94 percent of those who went on to have a live irth.

"This is the first time that this has been reported. It has very ignificant implications and if the results are replicated, we ould eventually be able to reassure women who present with leeding in early pregnancy about the outcome of their regnancies.

"Obviously for those whose pregnancies are identified by this easurement as destined to end in a miscarriage, knowing this may ause grief and upset but it may also help them to come to terms uickly with the outcome of the pregnancies.

"This is the first stage of this study but the results are very ncouraging and we are undertaking further studies to confirm our bservations. Once these are confirmed, we plan to develop a bed-ide test which could then be applied in clinical practice."

Other researchers on the study were Osama Habayeb, Anthony H. aylor, Mark Finney and Mark D. Evans. Professors David Taylor nd Stephen Bell and Dr Marcus Cooke of the University of eicester also contributed to the study.

The study is published in the Journal of the American Medical ssociation.


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