Researchers from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology from the Qilu Hospital of Shandong University recently published a study on LTB4 and 5-LO levels throughout pregnancy. LTB4, also known as leukotriene B4, is a product of leukocytes released as part of the inflammatory response. Arachidonate 5-lipoxygenase, or 5-LO, is an enzyme that converts essential fatty acids to leukotrienes. The study was published in the April edition of the Archives of Gynecology and Obstetrics.

LTB4 levels were measured throughout the pregnancies of 21 healthy women. Researchers chose the ELISA double antibody sandwich method to detect LTB4 levels. 5-LO levels were measured in 20 healthy early pregnancies and 21 healthy third-trimester pregnancies.

Researchers noted increases in LTB4 during all pregnancy stages. 5-LO levels measured higher in the third trimester than early pregnancy. Based on these results, researchers believe LTB4 and 5-LO levels can be used to determine pregnancy health.

Source: Jian F, Ma Y, Liu Z, Wang L, Zhang Y. The change of LTB4 and 5-LO during pregnancy. Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2013 Apr 10.