Our group was initially constituted as a multidisciplinary team basically composed of specialists in fetal medicine and children’s cardiologists to continue working in the field of congenital heart disease (CC) research. To this fruitful line of research has been added in recent years related to the prediction, early diagnosis and prognosis of preeclampsia (PE) through the combined use of clinical, sonographic and biochemical markers.
In recent years, the group develops activities in two main lines of research:
Congenital heart defects
The research is mainly focused in the following issues:
- how to improve the rates of prenatal detection of CC in both quantitative and qualitative terms, including the precision in diagnosis.
- the study of structural and functional development of the central nervous system of fetuses with CC, with special emphasis on the distinction of those are duct-dependent to maintain the systemic circulation of those that are not
- the analysis of the predictive parameters to know the evolution of the different CC and, especially, of the severe valvular stenosis and its potential to end in univentricular circulation, and of coarctation of the aorta
- the role of fetal cardiac intervention and the investigation of the selection criteria of fetuses that are candidates for intrauterine surgery, the improvement of the technique and the subsequent evaluation of its efficacy
- the elaboration of clinical pathways for the most common CC and, postnatal follow-up and treatment of patients born with a CC
Here the research is mainly centered in these points:
- the clinical implantation in our setting of a novel protocol of early detection and monitoring of pregnant women who develop PE based on the use of angiogenesis markers and, particularly, of the sFlt-1 / PlGF ratio.
- the clinical implementation of these markers to rule out or confirm suspected preeclampsia and its use for the differential diagnosis of preeclampsia with diseases that can mimic it, such as lupus
- the value of the sFlt-1/PlGF ratio in making decisions such as the finalization of pregnancy when a certain value is reached
For all this we currently have a grant from the Carlos III Institute and we collaborate in another multicentre clinical trial also funded by this Institute. Finally, we are part of collaborative international networks that work on the same issue, such as the “The Global Pregnancy Collaboration” (CoLab), and the “Cerebroplacental ratio individual participant data (CPR IPD) metaanalysis”