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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Detection and Management of Preeclampsia: Current Laboratory Testing and Emerging Biomarkers. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Table I: Circulating Levels of Angiogenic Biomarkers in Preeclampsia (PE)

The factors listed in the table below are potential biomarkers for PE. However, in all cases, further studies are needed.

BioMarkerCharacteristics and FunctionsCirculating Levels (blood, serum/plasma) in PEComments on Clinical Significance/Use
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF)A pro-angiogenic factor that creates new blood vessels during embryonic development.Increased, decreased, or normal
  • Studies tend to be mixed on the levels during PE.
  • Recent studies may support elevated levels in PE.
Placental Growth Factor (PlGF)A pro-angiogenic factor that acts as a vasodilator of uterine vascular remodeling during pregnancyDecreased
  • Levels are significantly lower in mild and severe PE.
Soluble fms-like Tyrosine Kinase 1 Receptor (sFlt-1)An anti-angiogenic factor that disables other proteins involved in blood vessel growthIncreased
  • Levels are higher in PE.
Soluble Endoglin (sEng)An anti-angiogenic factor that modulates growth by binding to TGF-beta.Increased
  • Significantly elevated levels in PE.
sFlt-1/PlGF RatioThe ratio may be useful to assess PE as well as time to delivery.Increased
  • Ratio may be higher in PE.
  • Higher ratios may also suggest reduced time to deliver.