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Open AccessArticle

Speckle Tracking Echocardiography: New Ways of Translational Approaches in Preeclampsia to Detect Cardiovascular Dysfunction

by Kristin Kräker 1,2,3,4,5, Till Schütte 3,4,5,6, Jamie O’Driscoll 7,8,9, Anna Birukov 5,10, Olga Patey 7,8,11, Florian Herse 1,2,3,4, Dominik N. Müller 1,2,3,4,5, Basky Thilaganathan 7,8, Nadine Haase 1,2,3,4,5 and Ralf Dechend 1,3,4,5,12,*
1
Experimental and Clinical Research Center, a joint cooperation between the Max – Delbrück—Center for Molecular Medicine and the Charité—Universitätsmedizin Berlin, 13125 Berlin, Germany
2
Max – Delbrück—Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association, 13125 Berlin, Germany
3
Charité—Universitätsmedizin Berlin, corporate member of Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt—Universität zu Berlin, and Berlin Institute of Health, 10117 Berlin, Germany
4
Berlin Institute of Health (BIH), 10178 Berlin, Germany
5
DZHK (German Centre for Cardiovascular Research), partner site Berlin, 10785 Berlin, Germany
6
Institute of Pharmacology, Charité—Universitätsmedizin Berlin, corporate member of Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt—Universität zu Berlin, and Berlin Institute of Health, 10115 Berlin, Germany
7
Molecular & Clinical Sciences Research Institute, St George’s University of London, London SW17 0RE, UK
8
Fetal Medicine Unit, St. George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, London SW17 0QT, UK
9
Canterbury Christ Church University, School of Human and Life Sciences, Kent CT1 1QU, UK
10
Department of Molecular Epidemiology, German Institute of Human Nutrition Potsdam-Rehbrücke, 14558 Nuthetal, Germany
11
Brompton Centre for Fetal Cardiology, Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, London SW3 6NP, UK
12
HELIOS-Klinikum, 13125 Berlin, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21(3), 1162; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms21031162
Received: 2 December 2019 / Revised: 2 February 2020 / Accepted: 3 February 2020 / Published: 10 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms of Preeclampsia)
Several studies have shown that women with a preeclamptic pregnancy exhibit an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms are unknown. Animal models are essential to investigate the causes of this increased risk and have the ability to assess possible preventive and therapeutic interventions. Using the latest technologies such as speckle tracking echocardiography (STE), it is feasible to map subclinical changes in cardiac diastolic and systolic function as well as structural changes of the maternal heart. The aim of this work is to compare cardiovascular changes in an established transgenic rat model with preeclampsia-like pregnancies with findings from human preeclamptic pregnancies by STE. The same algorithms were used to evaluate and compare the changes in echoes of human and rodents. Parameters of functionality such as global longitudinal strain (animal −23.54 ± 1.82% vs. −13.79 ± 0.57%, human −20.60 ± 0.47% vs. −15.45 ± 1.55%) as well as indications of morphological changes such as relative wall thickness (animal 0.20 ± 0.01 vs. 0.25 ± 0.01, human 0.34 ± 0.01 vs. 0.40 ± 0.02) are significantly altered in both species after preeclamptic pregnancies. Thus, the described rat model simulates the human situation quite well and is a valuable tool for future investigations regarding cardiovascular changes. STE is a unique technique that can be applied in animal models and humans with a high potential to uncover cardiovascular maladaptation and subtle pathologies. View Full-Text
Keywords: preeclampsia; pregnancy; speckle tracking echocardiography; cardiovascular dysfunction; animal models of human disease preeclampsia; pregnancy; speckle tracking echocardiography; cardiovascular dysfunction; animal models of human disease
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Kräker, K.; Schütte, T.; O’Driscoll, J.; Birukov, A.; Patey, O.; Herse, F.; Müller, D.N.; Thilaganathan, B.; Haase, N.; Dechend, R. Speckle Tracking Echocardiography: New Ways of Translational Approaches in Preeclampsia to Detect Cardiovascular Dysfunction. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21, 1162.

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