J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med 35 (11) 2054-2062 [2022-06-00; online 2020-06-16]
Spontaneous preterm delivery (<37 gestational weeks) has a multifactorial etiology with still incompletely identified pathways. Amniotic fluid is a biofluid with great potential for insights into the feto-maternal milieu. It is rich in metabolites, and metabolic consequences of inflammation is yet researched only to a limited extent. Metabolomic profiling provides opportunities to identify potential biomarkers of inflammatory conditioned pregnancy complications such as spontaneous preterm delivery. The aim of this study was to perform metabolomic profiling of amniotic fluid from uncomplicated singleton pregnancies in the mid-trimester to identify potential biomarkers associated with spontaneous preterm delivery and gestational duration at delivery. A secondary aim was to replicate previously reported mid-trimester amniotic fluid metabolic biomarkers of spontaneous preterm delivery in asymptomatic women. A nested case-control study was performed within a larger cohort study of asymptomatic pregnant women undergoing mid-trimester genetic amniocentesis at 14-19 gestational weeks in Gothenburg, Sweden. Medical records were used to obtain clinical data and delivery outcome variables. Amniotic fluid samples from women with a subsequent spontaneous preterm delivery (n = 37) were matched with amniotic fluid samples from women with a subsequent spontaneous delivery at term (n = 37). Amniotic fluid samples underwent untargeted metabolomic analyses using liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. Multivariate random forest analyses were used for data processing. A secondary targeted analysis was performed, aiming to replicate previously reported mid-trimester amniotic fluid metabolic biomarkers in women with a subsequent spontaneous preterm delivery. Multivariate analysis did not distinguish the samples from women with a subsequent spontaneous preterm delivery from those with a subsequent term delivery. Neither was the metabolic profile associated with gestational duration at delivery. Potential metabolic biomarker candidates were identified from four publications by two different research groups relating mid-trimester amniotic fluid metabolomes to spontaneous PTD, of which fifteen markers were included in the secondary analysis. None of these were replicated. Metabolomic profiles of early mid-trimester amniotic fluid were not associated with spontaneous preterm delivery or gestational duration at delivery in this cohort.