Differential Expression of Candidate Circulating microRNAs in Maternal Blood Leukocytes of the Patients with Preeclampsia and Gestational Diabetes Mellitus


Preeclampsia (PE) is diagnosed in women presenting with new onset hypertension accompanied by proteinuria. Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is the carbohydrate intolerance that can occur in pregnancy. Neutrophil activation is related to PE and GDM. Circulating microRNAs (miRs) are small, noncoding RNA molecules. The aim of this study was to verify the expression levels of three candidate miRs in blood leukocytes of the patients with PE, GDM, and PE-GDM compared to healthy controls.


We selected miR-21-3p, miR-155-5p, and miR-16-5p which have been associated with GDM and PE. Using real-time quantitative PCR, the expression levels of miR-21-3p, miR-155-5p, miR-16-5p were analyzed in PE (n = 23), GDM (n = 19), PE, and GDM (n = 9) compared to healthy controls (n = 28).


The relative expression of the target miR in patient samples was compared to the calibrator and the results were expressed as relative quantification values.


There was a significant decrease in the expression levels of miR-21-3p in GDM and PE and miR-155-5p in PE group. No significant differences were observed in the expression levels of miRs in PE-GDM group. On receiving operator characteristic (ROC) analysis, areas under the curve (AUC) of the expression ratio of miR-21-3p in GDM was 0.73, and miR-21-3p, miR-155-5p in PE were 0.69 and 0.81, respectively.


Our findings indicated that decreased miR-21-3p and miR-155-5p expression levels are associated with PE and miR-21-3p levels are associated with GDM. Our study for the first time revealed that miR-21-3p, miR-16-5p and miR155-5p are not related to PE-GDM group.