The John B. Pierce Laboratory


Drs. Stachenfeld and Usselman receive the Paul E. Titus Fellowship in Obstetrics for 2016-2017

Drs. Nina Stachenfeld and Charlotte Usselman are recipients of the Paul E. Titus Fellowship in Obstetrics at Yale School of Medicine for 2016-2017.  This fund supports research into adverse pregnancy outcomes.  Preeclampsia affects ~5% of pregnancies, and is the leading cause of maternal-fetal morbidity and mortality world wide, including the United States.  The cardiovascular consequences of preeclampsia are particularly severe, and include hypertension and proteinuria.  Our ability to predict, prevent or cure preeclampsia (short of complete bed rest or delivery) is limited.  Drs. Stachenfeld and Usselman’s project, “Acute Cardiovascular Stressors to Determine Preeclampsia Risk” examines a number of measures targeting endothelial and sympathetic nervous system function in previously preeclamptic women as well as control participants.  These measures will uncover indicators of cardiovascular dysfunction that are unique to women who have a demonstrated increased risk for preeclampsia.  In the proposed study Stachenfeld and Usselman will, for the first time, test a range of cardiovascular stressors that activate different reflex loops known to be involved with preeclampsia. In doing so, the elucidation of novel but simple screening methods for preeclampsia will, in turn, lead to methods which will allow for preventative therapies, early detection, and/or targeted interventions for women with preeclampsia.