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Low serum placental lactogen at term is associated with postnatal symptoms of depression and anxiety in women delivering female infants

Sumption, L. A. ORCID:, Garay, S. M. and John, R. M. ORCID: 2020. Low serum placental lactogen at term is associated with postnatal symptoms of depression and anxiety in women delivering female infants. Psychoneuroendocrinology 116 , 104655. 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2020.104655

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Background. Placental endocrine insufficiency may increase the risk of depression and anxiety during pregnancy and/or after birth. This study investigated the association between serum human placental lactogen (hPL) and measures of perinatal mental health, accounting for selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) usage. Method. Caucasian women with singleton, term pregnancies recruited at their pre-surgical appointment prior to an elective caesarean section (ELCS) were studied. Serum hPL levels in maternal blood collected at recruitment were measured by ELISA. Depression and anxiety scores were derived from Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and the trait subscale of the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) questionnaires completed at recruitment and three postnatal time points. Data was analysed by unadjusted and adjusted multiple linear regression. Results. In adjusted linear regressions, term maternal serum hPL levels were negatively associated with postnatal EPDS and STAI score ten weeks postnatal for mothers who had girls (B= -.367 , p= .022, 95% CI -.679, -.056; and B= -.776, p= .030, 95% CI -1.475, -.077 respectively). Excluding women prescribed SSRIs strengthened the relationship at 10 weeks and uncovered an earlier association between hPL and mood scores within one week of delivery (EPDS B= -.357 , p= .041, 95% CI -.698, -.015; and STAI B= -.737, p= .027, 95% CI -1.387, -.086). In mothers who had boys, there were no associations between hPL and mood scores at any time point. Conclusion. Low hPL predicted postnatal depression and anxiety symptoms exclusively in mothers of girls. Insufficiency in hPL may contribute to maternal mood symptoms.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0306-4530
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 17 March 2020
Date of Acceptance: 16 March 2020
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2023 20:36

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