The variation of amniotic fluid microviscosity with gestational age was measured in rat, rabbit, and guinea pig. In rat, the changes followed the same pattern as known for women, microviscosity being high during early and mid-gestation and markedly lowering 12 h before delivery. Surprisingly, an opposite trend was observed in rabbit and guinea pig amniotic fluid. Moreover, the lecithin to sphingomyelin ratio markedly rose in late gestation in all species considered. Qualitative and quantitative analysis of lipids and phospholipids were performed in woman and rabbit amniotic fluids at early and late gestational ages. Among all the parameters measured, the most important differences that can influence the amniotic fluid microviscosity are the presence of very high levels of lysopbosphatidylcholine both in early and late gestation in rabbit (much higher than in woman) and the cholesterol to total phospholipid ratio which decreased with gestational age in woman but remained stable in rabbit. The Arrhenius plot of the logarithm of microviscosity against the reciprocal of absolute temperature of mature and immature amniotic fluids from woman and rabbit was also determined. The temperature profiles confirmed the differences in lipid profile between woman and rabbit in early and late gestation which could be quantified on a physicochemical basis by determining the activation energy (δE) at 25 and 37C for each curve. This confirmed the opposite patterns in woman and rabbit and showed that amniotic fluid from the immature rabbit was the most fluid.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Molecular Biology
- Clinical Biochemistry