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Higher maternal plasma folate, vitamin B12 and homocysteine levels in women with preeclampsia


Micronutrients like vitamin B12 and folate play an important role in nucleic acid metabolism, cell growth, and are important determinants of fetal growth. The present study examined the levels of maternal and cord plasma folate, vitamin B12, homocysteine, and their association with birth outcome in women with preeclampsia (PE). This study includes 450 normotensive control (NC) and 350 women with PE. PE women were further classified into women delivering at term (n = 224) and preterm (n = 126). Maternal and cord blood was collected at delivery. The levels of maternal vitamin B12 (p < 0.05), folate (p < 0.01), and homocysteine (p < 0.01) were higher in the PE group as compared to the NC group. Maternal folate levels were higher in both term and preterm groups, while vitamin B12 levels were higher only in the preterm group as compared to NC group. In contrast, homocysteine was higher only in the term PE group. Similar changes were also observed in the cord plasma. There was a positive association of maternal plasma homocysteine with systolic (r = 0.151, p = 0.000, n = 578) and diastolic blood pressure (r = 0.213, p = 0.000, n = 578) in the whole cohort. A negative association of maternal folate with systolic blood pressure (r = −0.105, p = 0.048, n = 352) while a positive association with baby weight in the NC group (r = 0.116, p = 0.029, n = 352). The present study suggests that maternal and cord micronutrient levels are altered in women with PE.

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The authors are grateful to the study participants for the successful completion of the study.


The authors thank the Department of Biotechnology (Govt. of India), New Delhi India for financial support (BT/PR10596/PFN/20/995/201).

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Correspondence to Sadhana Joshi.

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