Intrauterine presence of Porphyromonas gingivalis (Pg), a common oral pathobiont, is implicated in preterm birth. Our aim was to determine if the location of Pg within placental and/or umbilical cord sections was associated with a specific delivery diagnosis at preterm delivery (histologic chorioamnionitis, chorioamnionitis with funisitis, preeclampsia, and preeclampsia with HELLP-syndrome, small for gestational age). The prevalence and location of Pg within archived placental and umbilical cord specimens from preterm (25 to 32 weeks gestation) and term control cohorts were evaluated by immunofluorescent histology. Detection of Pg was performed blinded to pregnancy characteristics. Multivariate analyses were performed to evaluate independent effects of gestational age, being small for gestational age, specific preterm delivery diagnosis, antenatal steroids, and delivery mode, on the odds of having Pg in the preterm tissue. Within the preterm cohort, 49 of 97 (51%) placentas and 40 of 97 (41%) umbilical cord specimens were positive for Pg. Pg within the placenta was significantly associated with shorter gestation lengths (OR 0.63 (95%CI: 0.48-0.85; p = 0.002) per week) and delivery via caesarean section (OR 4.02 (95%CI: 1.15-14.04; p = 0.03), but not with histological chorioamnionitis or preeclampsia. However, the presence of Pg in the umbilical cord was significantly associated with preeclampsia: OR 6.73 (95%CI: 1.31- 36.67; p = 0.02). In the term cohort, 2 of 35 (6%) placentas and no umbilical cord term specimens were positive for Pg. The location of Pg within the placenta was different between preterm and term groups in that Pg within the villous mesenchyme was only detected in the preterm cohort, whereas Pg associated with syncytiotrophoblasts was found in both preterm and term placentas. Taken together, our results suggest that the presence of Pg within the villous stroma or umbilical cord may be an important determinant in Pg-Associated adverse pregnancy outcomes.,
Department of Pediatrics

Vanterpool, S.F, Been, J.V, Houben, M.L, Nikkels, P.G.J, de Krijger, R.R, Zimmermann, L.J.I, … Reyes, L. (2016). Porphyromonas gingivalis within placental villous mesenchyme and umbilical cord stroma is associated with adverse pregnancy outcome. PLoS ONE, 11(1). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0146157