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Effect of reactive oxygen species on fetal lung maturation

      Abstract

      Objectives: Fetal lung maturation in preterm infants with chorioamnionitis is known to be accelerated. However, the molecular basis of this pathological acceleration has not been elucidated. We investigated whether reactive oxygen species play a role in the acceleration of fetal lung maturation. Study Design: On the 16th day of gestation, xanthine (1 mM) and xanthine oxidase solution (0.1–100 mU/ml) were injected into the intrauterine cavity of pregnant rats. On the 19th day of gestation, we examined the expression of the mRNA of surfactant associated proteins A, B and C (sp-A, sp-B and sp-C) by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Results: sp-A, sp-B and sp-C mRNAs were observed in lung tissue from fetal rats stimulated by xanthine–xanthine oxidase in contrast to the control. Conclusion: Reactive oxygen species in amniotic fluid might be an important factor in accelerated fetal lung maturation associated with chorioamnionitis in the rat experimental model.

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