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COVID-19 Zaps Placenta’s Immune Response, Study Finds

By September 26, 2022No Comments

If a woman contracts COVID-19 during her pregnancy, the infection, even if it’s mild, damages the placenta’s immune response to further infections, a UW Medicine-led study has found.

The study was published Sept. 17 in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

“This is the largest study to date of placentas from women who had COVID-19 during their pregnancies,” said Dr. Kristina Adams Waldorf, senior author and professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Washington School of Medicine.  “We were surprised to find that women who had COVID-19 during their pregnancies had placentas with an impaired immune response to new infection.”

This finding, Adams Waldorf added, “was the tip of the iceberg” in how COVID-19 might affect fetal or placental development.