UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Associations between the Level of Trace Elements and Minerals and Folate in Maternal Serum and Amniotic Fluid and Congenital Abnormalities Kocylowski, Rafal; Grzesiak, Mariusz; Gaj, Zuzanna; Lorenc, Wiktor; Bakinowska, Ewa; Barałkiewicz, Danuta; von Kaisenberg, Constantin S.; Lamers, Yvonne; Suliburska, Joanna


Congenital birth defects may result in a critical condition affecting the baby, including severe fetal/neonatal handicap and mortality. Several studies have shown that genetic, nutritional, and environmental factors may have an impact on fetal development and neonatal health. The relevance of essential and toxic elements on fetal development has not yet been fully investigated, and the results of recent research indicate that these elements may be crucial in the assessment of the risk of malformations in neonates. We determined the association between essential and toxic elements and the level of folate in maternal serum (MS) and amniotic fluid (AF), along with neonatal abnormalities. A total of 258 pregnant Polish women in the age group of 17–42 years participated in this study. AF and MS were collected during vaginal delivery or during cesarean section. An inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry technique was used to determine the levels of various elements in AF and MS. The results of this exploratory study indicate that the levels of essential and toxic elements are associated with fetal and newborn anatomical abnormalities and growth disorders.

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