The Journal of Applied Laboratory Medicine, 2020
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Abstract Background Preeclampsia (PE) affects 2%–8% of all pregnancies worldwide. The predictive value of the currently used maternal serum fms-like tyrosine kinase-1/ placental growth factor (sFlt-1/PlGF) test is < 40% for PE onset within 4 weeks. We aimed to develop an innovative multiplex assay to improve PE prediction. Methods The 6PLEX assay combining the measurements of ADAM12, sENG, leptin, PlGF, sFlt-1, and PTX3 was developed for the Luminex® xMAP platform. Assay performance was evaluated using 61 serum samples drawn from 53 pregnant women between 180 and 275 gestational days: diagnosed PE cases, n = 4; cases with PE onset within 4–62 days after sampling, n = 25; controls, n = 32. The B·R·A·H·M·S Kryptor sFlt-1/PlGF test (Thermo Fisher Scientific, Hennigsdorf, Germany) was applied as an external reference. Alternative PE prediction formulae combining 6PLEX measurements with clinical parameters were developed. Results There was a high correlation in sFlt-1/PlGF estimated for individual sera between the 6PLEX and B·R·A·H·M·S Kryptor immunoassays (Spearman’s r = 0.93, P < 0.0001). The predictive power of the 6PLEX combined with gestational age and maternal weight at sampling reached AUC 0.99 (95% CI 0.97–1.00) with sensitivity 100.0% and specificity 96.9%. In all models, sFlt-1/PlGF derived from the B·R·A·H·M·S immunoassays exhibited the lowest AUC value (<0.87) and sensitivity (<80%) with broad confidence intervals (13%–92%). The estimated prognostic yield of the 6PLEX compared to the B·R·A·H·M·S assay was significantly higher (96.5% vs 73.7%; P = 0.0005). Conclusions The developed single-tube multimarker assay for PE risk estimation in combination with clinical symptoms reached high prognostic yield (96.5%) and exhibited superior performance compared to the sFlt-1/PlGF test.