Antioxidants, Vol. 13, Pages 730: Therapeutic Effect of Alpha Lipoic Acid in a Rat Preclinical Model of Preeclampsia: Focus on Maternal Signs, Fetal Growth and Placental Function

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Antioxidants, Vol. 13, Pages 730: Therapeutic Effect of Alpha Lipoic Acid in a Rat Preclinical Model of Preeclampsia: Focus on Maternal Signs, Fetal Growth and Placental Function

Antioxidants doi: 10.3390/antiox13060730

Authors: Gabriela Barrientos Mariano L. Schuman Maria S. Landa Elizabeth Robello Claudio Incardona Melanie L. Conrad Monica Galleano Silvia I. GarcĂ­a

Chronic hypertension is a major risk factor for preeclampsia (PE), associated with significant maternal and neonatal morbidity. We previously demonstrated that pregnant stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRSP) display a spontaneous PE-like phenotype with distinct placental, fetal, and maternal features. Here, we hypothesized that supplementation with alpha lipoic acid (ALA), a potent antioxidant, during early pregnancy could ameliorate the PE phenotype in this model. To test this hypothesis, timed pregnancies were established using 10 to 12-week-old SHRSP females (n = 19–16/group), which were assigned to two treatment groups: ALA (injected intraperitoneally with 25 mg/kg body weight ALA on gestation day (GD1, GD8, and GD12) or control, receiving saline following the same protocol. Our analysis of maternal signs showed that ALA prevented the pregnancy-dependent maternal blood pressure rise (GD14 blood pressure control 169.3 ± 19.4 mmHg vs. 146.1 ± 13.4 mmHg, p = 0.0001) and ameliorated renal function, as noted by the increased creatinine clearance and improved glomerular histology in treated dams. Treatment also improved the fetal growth restriction (FGR) phenotype, leading to increased fetal weights (ALA 2.19 ± 0.5 g vs. control 1.98 ± 0.3 g, p = 0.0074) and decreased cephalization indexes, indicating a more symmetric fetal growth pattern. This was associated with improved placental efficiency, decreased oxidative stress marker expression on GD14, and serum soluble fms-like tyrosine kinase 1 (sFlt1) levels on GD20. In conclusion, ALA supplementation mitigated maternal signs and improved placental function and fetal growth in SHRSP pregnancies, emerging as a promising therapy in pregnancies at high risk for PE.

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