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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 3, Issue 3, Pages 214-218
http://dx.doi.org/10.4161/oxim.3.3.12070

Oxidative Stress in Fetal Distress: Potential Prospects for Diagnosis

1Clinic of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Clinical Centre of Montenegro, Podgorica, Montenegro
2Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Kragujevac, Kragujevac, Serbia
3Clinic of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Clinical Centre ”Kragujevac“, Faculty of Medicine, University of Kragujevac, Kragujevac, Serbia
4Department of Haematology Internal Clinic, Clinical Centre ”Kragujevac“, Faculty of Medicine, University of Kragujevac, Kragujevac, Serbia
5Department of Neonatology, Institute for Gynecology and Obstetrics, Clinical Centre of Serbia, Belgrade, Serbia

Received 1 April 2010; Revised 13 April 2010; Accepted 14 April 2010

Copyright © 2010 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Our aim was to investigate the relation between fetal distress and oxidative stress. Fetal distress was associated with increased concentration of superoxide in the fetal blood and with significant increase of the level of H2O2 in both maternal and fetal blood. The activity of superoxide dismutase was increased roughly sixfold (p < 0.01) in the maternal [7330 ± 2240 U/g of hemoglobin in controls (C) and 36811 ± 16862 U/g in fetal distress (FD)] and fetal blood (C: 5930 ± 2641 U/g; FD: 41912 ± 17133 U/g). In contrast, fetal distress was related to a considerable decrease of catalase activity in both maternal (C: 26011 ± 8811 U/g; FD: 7212 ± 1270 U/g) and fetal blood (C: 37194 ± 9191 U/g; FD: 6173 ± 1965 U/g). From this we concluded that in fetal distress, the maternal and fetal bloods are exposed to superoxide- and H2O2-mediated oxidative stress, which could be initiated by hypoxic conditions in the fetal blood and placenta. A tremendous increase/decrease of the activities of superoxide dismutase/catalase in the blood of women bearing a distressed fetus in comparison to healthy subjects implies that the assessment of superoxide dismutase/catalase activity could be of use for establishing a timely and accurate ante- or intrapartum diagnosis of fetal distress.