Antenatal melatonin as an antioxidant in human pregnancies complicated by fetal growth restriction--a phase I pilot clinical trial: study protocol

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BACKGROUND: Fetal growth restriction complicates about 5 of pregnancies and is commonly caused by placental dysfunction. It is associated with increased risks of perinatal mortality and short-term and long-term morbidity, such as cerebral palsy. Chronic in utero hypoxaemia, inflammation and oxidative stress are likely culprits contributing to the long-term neurological sequelae of fetal growth restriction. In this regard, we propose that melatonin, a powerful antioxidant, might mitigate morbidity and/or mortality associated with fetal growth restriction. Melatonin has an excellent biosafety profile and crosses the placenta and blood-brain barrier. We present the protocol for a phase I clinical trial to investigate the efficacy of maternal oral melatonin administration in women with a pregnancy complicated by fetal growth restriction. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: The proposed trial is a single-arm, open-label clinical trial involving 12 women. Severe, early onset fetal growth restriction will be diagnosed by an estimated fetal weight
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1 - 6
Number of pages6
JournalBMJ Open
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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