Research studies

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The Obstetric Medicine Research Group is undertaking the below research studies. We welcome contact from people interested in taking part in these studies (see email addresses for each study).

Maternal metabolic health and mother and baby health outcomes (MAMBO): An observational cohort study.

We want to learn how to predict and prevent metabolic disease in mothers and their babies. Recent studies show that the first 1,000 days of life, from conception to around 2 years of age, are critically important in determining the long-term health of infants.

It is likely that all babies are programmed by maternal nutrition: sugars, proteins and fats. This programming occurs because maternal nutrition can alter the ‘epigenome’ or way that genes are ‘read’ in the offspring. 

We want to understand how a mother's metabolic health influences a baby’s short and long-term health. We are inviting women who are between 16-24 weeks' gestation to participate in the study. We would see them twice while they are pregnant and once after they have given birth. 

Principal Investigator: Dr Sarah Price
Research Midwife: Alice Lewin at 
Start date: March 2023

The PRotective Effect of Maternal Immunisation on preTerm birth: Underlying mechanisms and Role in newborn immune function.

Our previous work found that immunisation during pregnancy with influenza and/or pertussis containing vaccines can reduce the risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes, including pre-term birth and stillbirth. 

We don’t yet fully understand why or how these are associated. We believe it may be that the vaccines stimulate the immune system in certain ways that favour the pregnancy to continue to a longer gestation.

The PREMITUR study will recruit 400 women and their babies who will be followed longitudinally throughout pregnancy and beyond, with biological samples collected from both mother and baby. We will be using systems biology to better understand the immune trajectory of pregnancy and the impact vaccination has on this.

Learn more about our research: Born Strong website. 

Principal Investigator: Professor Michelle Giles
Research Midwife: Anna Cosgrave at
Start date: June 2022

Closed-loop Insulin delivery by glucose Responsive Computer algorithms In Type 1 diabetes pregnancies.

Optimising blood sugars can reduce pregnancy related complications in women with Type 1 diabetes.

The purpose of this study is to see if use of an insulin pump with a Closed Loop insulin delivery system by women with Type 1 diabetes during pregnancy improves:

  • diabetes control
  • quality of life outcomes for the women and their partners, and
  • health outcomes for the women and their children.

Principal Investigator: Dr Sarah Price
Trial coordinator: Roger Lindenmayer at
Start date: March 2024

A randomised trial of URsodeoxycholic acid versus RIFampicin in severe early onset Intrahepatic Cholestasis of pregnancy.

Severe early onset (before 34 weeks' of gestation) intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP) is a recognised rare disease of pregnancy. It is associated with an increased risk of stillbirth, preterm birth and medical problems in newborn babies. 

The best way to treat and manage women who are diagnosed with this condition is not known. 

This research project is testing a new treatment for ICP called rifampicin, a drug commonly used for treatment of infections, such as tuberculosis (TB), including in pregnant women.

This is an open label randomised controlled trial which will evaluate standard treatment with Ursodeoxycholic acid with Rifampicin in women with severe early onset ICP (bile acids over 40µmol/L, before 34 weeks' of gestation).

Principal Investigator: Dr Sarah Price
Research Midwife: Alice Lewin at
Start date: April 2024

A Prospective Observational Pregnancy Study of the Immunology in COVID-19 and InfLuEnza.

Existing evidence has shown us that pregnant women represent a unique population who are more susceptible to severe disease caused by SARS-CoV-2 and influenza. The reasons why pregnant women are more at risk may be many and varied. 

This research project will help us learn more about how the immune response in pregnancy responds to these respiratory viruses, taking into account previous vaccination or infection or both, and comparing responses to non-pregnant women of a similar age.

This will be achieved through the collection of various human tissue samples (such as: blood, nose/throat swabs) as well as the necessary data (health and/or personal information).

Principal Investigator: Professor Michelle Giles
Research Midwife: Anna Cosgrave at
Start date: May 2023


Studies closed to recruitment:

COSY - Using continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) to understand glucose control in women with obesity during pregnancy.

HBV/GDM - Unravelling the mechanisms by which chronic hepatitis B infection is associated with an increased risk of gestational diabetes.

LePET - Exploring leptin as a driver of preeclampsia in women with obesity.

POCGDM - Point of care testing for the diagnosis of gestational diabetes.