Preterm birth can cause serious life-long health problems for the child, importantly it is the greatest contributor to neonatal mortality. One of the major causes for preterm birth is preterm premature rupture of the membranes (PPROM). The mechanism for PPROM is unknown but hypothesized to be caused by placental inflammation which induces early labor. One potential mediator of placental inflammation is exposure to environmental toxins.
In the Johnson Lab we will be developing methods for measuring exposures during pregnancy and identify novel mechanisms for PPROM. We will be using samples collected locally from the Yale Pregnancy and Prediction Outcome Study (YPOPS).