Use of rapid non-invasive technologies and nanosensors to study and model pregnancy and stillbirth


Stillbirths are often referred to as a "silent epidemic" and are among the leading causes of death worldwide - 4 babies are lost every minute. The vast majority of stillbirths (98%) occur in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC), largely due to lack of health infrastructure and adequate clinical monitoring and care during pregnancy.

Analysis of stillbirth cases, particularly in LMIC areas, highlights the need to develop and implement novel solutions to identify high-risk mothers before clinical presentation and to more easily monitor the health of pregnant women. Therefore, there is an urgent need for the discovery of novel biomarkers (prognostic and predictive) that allow early diagnosis of problems in pregnancy development and estimate the risk of stillbirth.

Led by the University Women's Hospital in Tübingen, the GESTech4U project is part of the Wellcome LEAP Foundation's InUtero program - with the overarching goal of identifying risk factors early and drastically reducing stillbirths.

The GESTech4U project has the following objectives:

  1. Identify novel biomarkers using multimodal approaches (gene expression, metabolites, spectral data) for clinical diagnosis and prognosis of pregnancies associated with stillbirths.
  2. Development of liquid biopsy (maternal blood) bioassays for accurate diagnosis and prognosis of risk factors
  3. Development of combinatorial artificial intelligence (machine learning) to advance precision medicine for pregnancy health
  4. Realize miniaturized biosensor platforms for easier, continuous monitoring of high-risk pregnancies


01.10.2022 - 30.09.2025