Mimmi MC, Ballico M, Amoroso F, Calcaterra V, Marotta M, Peiro JL, Pelizzo G.

J Proteome Res. 2015 Mar 6;14(3):1465-71.




Fetal endoscopic tracheal occlusion has been proposed as a prenatal intervention to ameliorate congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) prognosis. Tracheal occlusion (TO) prevents pulmonary fluid egress, leading to tissue expansion, reversal of lung hypoplasia, and potential maturation. Fetal lung maturity strongly correlates with amniotic fluid (AF) phospholipidic composition. In this preliminary study, we characterized the AF phospholipidic profile in CDH-induced, TO-treated, and healthy fetal lambs to define the prenatal treatment benefits of TO on lung maturity. CDH induction was performed at 70 days of gestation, TO was carried out at 102 days of gestation, and caesarean section was carried out at 136 days of gestation. AF samples, taken at 102-136 days of gestation, were evaluated using mass spectrometry. The analysis focused on phosphatidylcholines (PCs) and sphingomyelins (SMs). The most abundant phosphatidylcholine species retrieved in healthy AF was POPC [PC(18:1/16:0)], while the level of DPPC [PC(16:0/16:0)] was extremely low at both gestational ages. CDH induction caused a decrease in POPC and many other PCs. A substantial return of some PCs, in particular POPC, PC(34:2) and PC(18:0/16:0), to a more physiological level was prompted by TO. SMs were unaltered. The AF phospholipidic profile could provide prenatal prognostic markers of CDH and possible indices of lung maturation after fetal treatment.