About our research
Miscarriage affects 1 in 6 pregnancies and causes untold emotional and physical pain to couples across the world. We are conducting a broad programme of work to better understand the causes of miscarriage and testing new treatments to prevent miscarriage, underpinned by the National Tommy’s Centre for Miscarriage Research, led by Professor Arri Coomarasamy and spanning across UoB, University of Warwick and Imperial College London. Recently, we have called on the UK government to invest in early pregnancy units and recurrent miscarriage clinics to end the current care and treatment postcode lottery.
Through a series of large multi-centre trials, Coomarasamy & team have achieved major breakthroughs, resulting in 3 NEJM publications in 2019 alone, and 5 NEJM papers in the last 3 years. This includes the PRISM trial, the largest ever miscarriage trial recruiting >4100 patients from 48 UK hospitals, which found that progesterone treatment increases live birth rate in women with early pregnancy bleeding and a history of previous miscarriages, with huge implications for practice.
The TABLET trial (Coomarasamy, Dhillon-Smith) aimed to test whether levothyroxine reduces the risk of miscarriage in women who have thyroid antibodies. The study found no benefit from this treatment, an important finding that should stop the unnecessary use of this treatment, a common practice in infertility clinics. We also explore the role of cell-free fetal DNA sequencing to investigate for chromosomal problems in the fetus (Kilby), the role of sperm DNA fragmentation in miscarriage risk (Kirkman-Brown), and the association between immune markers, placentation and miscarriage (Tamblyn, Hewison, Kilby).
A Randomized Trial of Progesterone in Women with Bleeding in Early Pregnancy. Coomarasamy A, Devall AJ, Cheed V, Harb H, Middleton LJ, Gallos ID, Williams H, Eapen AK, Roberts T, Ogwulu CC, Goranitis I, Daniels JP, Ahmed A, Bender-Atik R, Bhatia K, Bottomley C, Brewin J, Choudhary M, Crosfill F, Deb S, Duncan WC, Ewer A, Hinshaw K, Holland T, Izzat F, Johns J, Kriedt K, Lumsden MA, Manda P, Norman JE, Nunes N, Overton CE, Quenby S, Rao S, Ross J, Shahid A, Underwood M, Vaithilingam N, Watkins L, Wykes C, Horne A, Jurkovic D. N Engl J Med. 2019 May 9;380(19):1815-1824.
Levothyroxine in Women with Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies before Conception. Dhillon-Smith RK, Middleton LJ, Sunner KK, Cheed V, Baker K, Farrell-Carver S, Bender-Atik R, Agrawal R, Bhatia K, Edi-Osagie E, Ghobara T, Gupta P, Jurkovic D, Khalaf Y, MacLean M, McCabe C, Mulbagal K, Nunes N, Overton C, Quenby S, Rai R, Raine-Fenning N, Robinson L, Ross J, Sizer A, Small R, Tan A, Underwood M, Kilby MD, Boelaert K, Daniels J, Thangaratinam S, Chan SY, Coomarasamy A. N Engl J Med. 2019 Apr 4;380(14):1316-1325. 18 citations (Web of Science, Dec 2019)
Prenatal exome sequencing analysis in fetal structural anomalies detected by ultrasonography (PAGE): a cohort study. Lord J, McMullan DJ, Eberhardt RY, Rinck G, Hamilton SJ, Quinlan-Jones E, Prigmore E, Keelagher R, Best SK, Carey GK, Mellis R, Robart S, Berry IR, Chandler KE, Cilliers D, Cresswell L, Edwards SL, Gardiner C, Henderson A, Holden ST, Homfray T, Lester T, Lewis RA, Newbury-Ecob R, Prescott K, Quarrell OW, Ramsden SC, Roberts E, Tapon D, Tooley MJ, Vasudevan PC, Weber AP, Wellesley DG, Westwood P, White H, Parker M, Williams D, Jenkins L, Scott RH, Kilby MD, Chitty LS, Hurles ME, Maher ER; Prenatal Assessment of Genomes and Exomes Consortium. Lancet. 2019 Feb 23;393(10173):747-757.