Elevated mid-pregnancy plasma levels of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 in women prior to the development of preeclampsia.

Junus K, Björk Ragnarsdóttir I, Nordlöf Callbo P, Bergman L, Lager S, Wikström AK

Sci Rep 12 (1) 4109 [2022-03-08; online 2022-03-08]

Preeclampsia and cardiovascular disease (CVD) share multiple features and risk factors. Circulating angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) is increased in CVD and mediates SARS-CoV-2 entry into host cells, causing COVID-19 infection. The role of ACE2 in preeclampsia pathophysiology is unknown. We hypothesized that circulating ACE2 is increased in mid-pregnancy in women later developing preeclampsia. We included 296 women later developing preeclampsia (cases) and 333 women with a continuous healthy pregnancy (controls). Circulating ACE2 was measured with an immunoassay based on proximity extension assay technology, with levels being expressed as relative quantification on a log2 scale. Median (interquartile range) ACE2 levels were higher in cases than in controls; 3.84 (3.50-4.24) vs. 3.72 (3.45-4.04), p = 0.002. Adjusted logistic regression models showed a 60% increased risk for later development of preeclampsia with one unit elevation of ACE2 (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 1.60, 95% confidence intervals (CI) 1.17-2.18). Preterm preeclampsia (diagnosis before 37 gestational weeks, n = 97) seemed to have a stronger ACE2 association than term preeclampsia, n = 199 (aORs, 95% Cis 2.14, 1.15-3.96 and 1.52, 1.04-2.23, respectively). Circulating ACE2 is increased at mid-pregnancy in women later developing preeclampsia, particularly preterm preeclampsia. Thus, our finding indicates a partly shared pathophysiological pathway between preeclampsia and CVD.

Affinity Proteomics Uppsala [Service]

PubMed 35260736

DOI 10.1038/s41598-022-08081-8

Crossref 10.1038/s41598-022-08081-8

pmc: PMC8902901
pii: 10.1038/s41598-022-08081-8

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