Genetics of Preeclampsia

Published by Alicia Ferguson on

Genetics of Preeclampsia 


What is Preeclampsia? 

Preeclampsia is a problem that can happen during pregnancy. It makes their blood pressure get really high and can cause organ damage. This condition can be life threatening for the mom that gives birth and the newborn baby if it’s not treated. People who are overweight or have high blood pressure already are more likely to get preeclampsia. Additionally, those with a family history of preeclampsia are two to five times more likely to develop the condition. 

Symptoms may include: 

  • Swelling
  • Sudden and unexpected weight gain
  • Headaches
  • Vision changes
  • Upper abdominal pain

Preeclampsia is managed with medication and close monitoring to prevent further problems. In serious cases, a hospital visit may be needed, and the baby may need to be delivered early. 

How is the research done? 

Researchers want to find new ways to prevent and predict preeclampsia. Using BioVU resources, the study team analyzes the DNA of those with this condition. This can help to find genes that may be linked to having preeclampsia and help find those at risk for developing it. The study team is hoping the genetic clues found can find a connection between preeclampsia and other health conditions. The researchers are also studying how blood pressure is related to preeclampsia to predict the risk of this disease.

What is the importance of this study?

The amount of people with this condition has increased.  This research may help us to learn more about what causes preeclampsia and how to treat it. By doing this research, we hope to find new ways to help people who have preeclampsia and prevent it from happening in the future.