Skip to content

Metabolomic Diagnostics Research Markedly Improves Preterm Preeclampsia Screening



                                        Metabolomic Diagnostics Research Markedly Improves Preterm Preeclampsia Screening


● The combination of metabolite biomarkers with established clinical markers improves screening.
● Study shows that a 15% increase in detection rates for preterm preeclampsia can be achieved.


Little Island, Co. Cork, Ireland, Sep. 21, 2023 – Deep tech company Metabolomic
Diagnostics announced today the publication of their paradigm-changing preeclampsia
research in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology -MFM which demonstrates
that an impressive 15% increase in detection rates in screening for preterm preeclampsia
can be achieved. The research reveals a significant advancement in preterm
preeclampsia screening using a combination of metabolite biomarkers and established
clinical markers—serum placental growth factor (PlGF), mean arterial pressure (MAP),
and uterine artery pulsatility index (UTA-PI).


  Little Island, Co. Cork, Ireland, Sep. 21, 2023 – Metabolomic Diagnostics, a deep tech company developing novel biomarker-based diagnostics, announced today the publication of their paradigm-changing preeclampsia research in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology -MFM. Conducted in collaboration with King’s College Hospital London, the research shows that detection rates in early preeclampsia prediction can be improved significantly when the current best-in-class biomarkers are combined with metabolite biomarkers.

For instance, an impressive 15% increase in detection rate was found when metabolites were combined with blood pressure measurements and Placental Growth Factor (PlGF), a protein biomarker well-known to be associated with preeclampsia risk. The research also shows that risk screening can be personalized. Patients with different body mass indexes and from different races express different biomarker levels, allowing for improvement of the detection rates.

  Women worldwide are affected by preeclampsia, a serious pregnancy complication, making early prediction crucial for effective antenatal care. It significantly impacts the healthcare budget; the 2013 expenditure exceeded two billion dollars/year in the US for the short-term consequences alone. Between 2007 and 2019, in the United States, age-standardized rates of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, which includes preeclampsia, nearly doubled, from 38.4 (38.2–38.6) to 77.8 (77.5–78.1) per 1000 live births. The increasing rate of hypertensive disorders in pregnancy is a driver of unfavourable trends observed for other adverse pregnancy outcomes, like low-birthweight infant delivery and preterm delivery. Adverse pregnancy outcomes were higher in non-Hispanic Black birthing individuals than non-Hispanic White, Hispanic, and Asian birthing individuals.

  Preeclampsia is still challenging to predict, and access to the preeclampsia screening tests available is often limited. Instead, patients will be classified as low or high-risk using basic checklists of characteristics and clinical history. As a result, many patients slip through the cracks, while others get a high-risk stamp to no benefit. Patients correctly identified as high-risk can benefit from adequate clinical monitoring, education about their condition and the prescription of aspirin, which is shown to prevent preterm preeclampsia. With better risk classification, often scarce resources will be well-spent as they are better directed.

  Metabolomic Diagnostics is developing a simple blood test that complements PlGF measurement with metabolomics technology to stratify patients by risk and guide health professionals on providing better care. It is a low-cost-high-throughput test, suitable for population screening as its test volume capacity can easily be scaled in clinical laboratories. The biomarker information can be combined with current first-trimester clinical protocols in place, making risk prediction simple, robust and accessible.

Shaping the Future of Prenatal Care

  Dr Robin Tuytten, the driving force behind this innovative research and CEO of Metabolomic Diagnostics, remarked, “This research clearly shows that metabolite biomarkers can be combined with established predictors, demonstrating the potential for personalized screening strategies tailored to individual patient profiles – precision medicine at its best. Our goal is to improve health equity by facilitating patient access to screening, acknowledging that every pregnant patient is different and achieving better pregnancy outcomes for all families. We want to improve current strategies and make screening available for every pregnancy.”

  Dr Kypros Nicolaides, principal investigator, renowned obstetrician and founder of the Fetal Medicine Foundation, UK, added: “This collaborative research is building on our earlier findings that early pregnancy metabolite levels can differentially associate with preterm preeclampsia depending on a patient’s body mass index, as published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology recently. The large number of samples analyzed allowed us to correct adequately for confounding associations and to explore the added value of patient classification by their characteristics to improve preterm preeclampsia prediction. The study demonstrates purposeful translational research by building on what is already working well in clinical practice.”

A Visionary Leap Forward

  Metabolomic Diagnostics’ pioneering study ushers in a new era of prenatal care, where precision medicine mitigates the risks associated with great obstetrical syndromes. The company is focused on transforming how healthcare professionals identify and manage critical pregnancy complications by integrating metabolite biomarker panels with existing screening methods. To achieve this vision, they brought together experts in developing multiplex biomarker assays and statistical analysts who understand the strengths of machine learning in formulating novel diagnostic solutions in precision medicine. The company has been supported by a network of clinical researchers who share the company’s vision and generously engaged in collaborations involving access to large sample biobanks. These collaborations have been instrumental in unlocking the company’s diagnostic innovation potential. The publication of this research is pivotal for the company as it confirms that its translational research tools can deliver diagnostic innovation, opening opportunities to tackle other pregnancy complications as well. In addition, it also demonstrates that its multiplex biomarker assays can support more personalized diagnostic solutions.

For more information about this revolutionary research, please visit the Metabolomic Diagnostics’ website or contact:

Head of Clinical Affairs: Ana Panigassi,

Note to Editors: Detailed technical information, study methodologies, results, images, and graphics are available upon request. Interviews with Dr Robin Tuytten can be arranged by contacting our media representative.

About Metabolomic Diagnostics: a leading biotechnology company specializing in innovative maternal health risk assessment solutions. Based in Little Island, Co.Cork, Ireland, the company is committed to advancing maternal health through cutting-edge research.

This press release is issued by Metabolomic Diagnostics and is in accordance with the guidelines for press releases outlined by industry standards.

Metabolomic Diagnostics Ltd., Hoffmann Park, Inchera, Little Island, Co. Cork, Ireland.
Phone: +353 21 701 1171 / email:
Reg No: 496661 / Directors: Robin Tuytten, PhD (CEO), Charles Garvey, Bill Liao, James Walsh, PhD

Dr Nicolaides has no financial or other interests in Metabolomic Diagnostics.

Disclaimer: The study findings and research data are available at Metabolomic Diagnostics acknowledges the support of the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under a grant under agreement number 822842 for parts of this research. Collection and storage of the maternal samples were funded by the Fetal Medicine Foundation (UK charity No: 1037116). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.