Borghild Roald's research group: Fetal and Pregnancy related Pathology Research

Borghild Roald
Group leader

Perinatal problems like fetal growth restriction and intrauterine fetal death are mainly related to placental insufficiency. Challenges are to understand the various placental pathology processes leading to insufficiency and their clinical implications to treatment and follow up.

Another perinatal problem is that premature born babies can experience hypoxia due to developmental immaturity in the fetal lungs, with serious complications in the fetal brain. Cochrane reviews have asked for research to explore the cellular and molecular mechanisms in corticosteroid treatment, clinically used to enhance lung maturation by threatening premature birth, - and to search for alternative treatment options. We aim to answer the questions raised by in ovo pharmacologic manipulation in a chicken experimental model.

Research projects

Our placental pathology research is based on a clinical tissue material with controls. It has focus on placental pathology related to gestational diabetes and metabolic disease, spiral artery remodeling and immune regulation in the placental bed, including acute atherosis as a possible predictor of arteriosclerosis and later cardiovascular disease. The fetal developmental biology and pathology research has focus on cellular and molecular events in the development and maturation of chick embryonal lungs by manipulation in ovo by clinical relevant pharmacological agents like corticosteroids and thryroid hormones in addition to inflammatory cytokines.


  • Placental pathology related to gestational diabetes and overweight
  • Placental pathology related to maternal vascular pathology
  • Spiral artery remodeling and acute atherosis in decidua, an indication of increased risk of later serious cardiovascular pathology?
  • Embryonic chicken lung development, pharmacologic manipulation studies
  • Correlation between colposcopic plus spectrometric findings and histopathology including immunopathology of Female Genital Schistosomiasis (collaborate study with University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa)