The objective of this proposal is to develop a quantitative ultrasound technique to noninvasively assess collagen in the uterine cervix in an attempt to build a comprehensive understanding of cervical extra- cellular matrix microstructure. We anticipate that an enhanced understanding of cervical microstructural changes will lead to targeted investigation of specific remodeling processes in pregnancy that will pro- mote understanding of cervical insufficiency (that leads to preterm delivery). This in turn will allow exploration of options for novel therapeutic strategies.

Public Health Relevance

This is a proposal to adapt new quantitative ultrasound technology to image and quantify in vivo cervical microstructure;specifically, we will target collagen because it is the primary component of the cervical extracellular matrix and, through its changes during the cervical remodeling process during gestation, is primarily responsible for cervical strength. The proposed effort involves (a) determining the sensitivity of ultrasound to the changes in collagen alignment in the cervix, (b) testing quantitative ultrasound in isotropic and anisotropic phantoms as well as ex vivo cervical tissue in order to establish imaging pa-rameters for in vivo cervical scanning, and (c) confirming through nonlinear optical imaging that we are detecting collagen in the cervix. The ability to accurately image rearrangements in collagen alignment in the cervical microstructure would inform our concept of cervical function and thus the dysfunction that leads to preterm delivery.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Exploratory/Developmental Grants (R21)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-SBIB-S (91))
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Reddy, Uma M
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University of Wisconsin Madison
Schools of Medicine
United States
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Rosado-Mendez, Ivan M; Carlson, Lindsey C; Woo, Kaitlin M et al. (2018) Quantitative assessment of cervical softening during pregnancy in the Rhesus macaque with shear wave elasticity imaging. Phys Med Biol 63:085016
Guerrero, Quinton W; Feltovich, Helen; Rosado-Mendez, Ivan M et al. (2018) Anisotropy and Spatial Heterogeneity in Quantitative Ultrasound Parameters: Relevance to the Study of the Human Cervix. Ultrasound Med Biol 44:1493-1503
Guerrero, Quinton W; Feltovich, Helen; Rosado-Mendez, Ivan M et al. (2018) Quantitative Ultrasound Biomarkers Based on Backscattered Acoustic Power: Potential for Quantifying Remodeling of the Human Cervix during Pregnancy. Ultrasound Med Biol :
Feltovich, Helen (2017) Cervical Evaluation: From Ancient Medicine to Precision Medicine. Obstet Gynecol 130:51-63
Guerrero, Quinton W; Rosado-Mendez, Ivan M; Drehfal, Lindsey C et al. (2017) Quantifying Backscatter Anisotropy Using the Reference Phantom Method. IEEE Trans Ultrason Ferroelectr Freq Control 64:1063-1077
Rosado-Mendez, Ivan M; Palmeri, Mark L; Drehfal, Lindsey C et al. (2017) Assessment of Structural Heterogeneity and Viscosity in the Cervix Using Shear Wave Elasticity Imaging: Initial Results from a Rhesus Macaque Model. Ultrasound Med Biol 43:790-803
Feltovich, Helen; Carlson, Lindsey (2017) New techniques in evaluation of the cervix. Semin Perinatol 41:477-484
Vink, Joy; Feltovich, Helen (2016) Cervical etiology of spontaneous preterm birth. Semin Fetal Neonatal Med 21:106-12
Huang, Bin; Drehfal, Lindsey Carlson; Rosado-Mendez, Ivan M et al. (2016) Estimation of Shear Wave Speed in the Rhesus Macaques' Uterine Cervix. IEEE Trans Ultrason Ferroelectr Freq Control 63:1243-52
Rosado-Mendez, Ivan M; Drehfal, Lindsey C; Zagzebski, James A et al. (2016) Analysis of Coherent and Diffuse Scattering Using a Reference Phantom. IEEE Trans Ultrason Ferroelectr Freq Control 63:1306-20

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