InterPregGen has access to a large number of DNA samples donated by pregnant women, their partners and babies, to help with research into pre-eclampsia. Most of these samples come from European countries: Finland, Iceland, Norway and the UK, and were collected over the last 15 years. They include samples from volunteers who took part in:
- The FINNPEC study in Finland
- The deCODE collection in Iceland
- The HUNT study in Norway
- The Norwegian Mother and Child study (MoBa)
- The GOPEC study in the UK
- The VIP study in the UK
The large number of volunteers in these combined collections improves the chances of identifying genes which are linked to pre-eclampsia. A large amount of genetic data is already available, and data analysts will examine the results in detail to hunt for genetic changes which predispose to pre-eclampsia.
InterPregGen also aims to search for pre-eclampsia genes in the Central Asian Kazakh and Uzbek populations. Over a three year period, from 2012 to 2015, we will be inviting pregnant women and women with normal pregnancies to take part in this study. We aim to include 2000 mother-father-baby groups with pre-eclampsia from Kazakhstan, and the same number from Uzbekistan. We will also include 2000 women with normal pregnancies from each country.
Our studies will include the creation of the first detailed maps of genetic variation in the Kazakh and Uzbek populations. To do this we will be asking for 100 volunteers from the general population in each country to take part in a whole genome sequencing project. This involves reading the entire DNA code in each individual, and will provide unique information to help genetic research projects for many years to come.