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Healthy heart, healthy pregnancy? How a woman’s periconceptional cardiovascular health affects the development of preeclampsia

Project summary

Pregnancy requires periconceptional adaptation of the maternal cardiovascular system to meet the demands of the growing fetus and placenta. Since preeclampsia (PE) has been associated with maternal cardiovascular disease later in life, we hypothesize that PE may be caused by latent maternal cardiovascular problems, preventing the mother from adapting well to the pregnancy. However, knowledge on cardiovascular adaptation to pregnancy in relation to PE in the periconception period is scarce.
Therefore, the overall aim of this cross-team collaborative project is to explore maternal cardiovascular adaptation to pregnancy in the periconception period and its role in the development of (recurrent) PE.


The researchers expect to contribute to the identification of new, predictive cardiovascular biomarkers for PE, which will enable the development of more accurate, periconceptional prevention strategies for PE.

More detailed information

Principal Investigator:

Dr. Wendy Koster

Role Erasmus MC:



Project website:

Funding Agency:

Preeclampsia foundation