Maternal Fetal Medicine Fellow

Erica Smith, MD

My main Research involves Placenta Accreta Spectrum and includes the following three projects with Drs. Helen Jones and Mehmet Genc.

  1. The effect of cryopreservation agents on HTR8/SVNeo migration, proliferation, and invasion. HTR8/SVNeo cells were exposed to common cryopreserving agents (CPA). This experiment resulted in the following conclusion: HTR8-SVneo cell migration is impaired after exposure to CPA; however, this is independent of proliferation. This project is completed and in the editing phase. 
  2. Immunohistochemical analysis of placenta accreta spectrum.  I am currently evaluating placenta specimens from groups: control, IVF associated, non-C/S scar accreta, Stage 2 basal plate myometrial fibers, Grade 1, Grade 2, Grade 3 accretas) for expression of HSP27, HSP60, HSP70, HSP90 and Serpina1 in a semi-quantative method. The placentas will be scored for the intensity of staining and then comparisons made between the groups. I have approximately 1 week left of staining on this project and then hours of analyzing images to follow but am hoping to finish the analysis by March.

Translational Research project. I have been collecting for approx 10 months samples of urine, blood, and cervicovaginal fluid from patients identified as at risk for PAS. Currently, I have samples from 11 accreta specimens, 6 Controls, and 5 patients who remain pregnant at this point. I plan to complete a biomarker study of the samples as the final phase of my research goals.  I hope to finish collecting samples by summer which will give me some time next year to finish this project.