Hypothesis: There are fetal sex-associated differences in the circulating maternal renin-angiotensin system (RAS) in early pregnancy. Methods: Plasma prorenin, angiotensin (Ang) II, Ang 1-7 and angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) concentrations were measured at 15 weeks' gestation in 131 women with uncomplicated pregnancies from the Adelaide SCOPE cohort. Uterine and umbilical artery Doppler sonography was performed at 20 weeks' gestation. Results: At 15 weeks, women bearing female fetuses had higher maternal Ang II concentrations (p = 0.017) and lower Ang 1-7 to Ang II ratios (p = 0.016) than women bearing males. In women with male fetuses, Ang II positively correlated with birth weight (p = 0.028) and prorenin negatively correlated with placental weight (p = 0.014). Female fetuses had higher umbilical artery resistance indices (p = 0.019) that were related to maternal prorenin concentrations (p = 0.007). Conclusions: In early human pregnancy, the maternal RAS is influenced by fetal sex. The lower Ang 1-7 to Ang II ratios in women with female fetuses may contribute to the lower maternal peripheral microvascular flow as described previously and the lack of any positive effect of Ang II on fetal growth, as seen in women with male fetuses.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||JRAAS - Journal of the Renin-Angiotensin-Aldosterone System|
|Publication status||Published - 17 Dec 2014|
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- angiotensin peptides
- angiotensin-converting enzyme
- sexual dimorphism