Characterizing and Evaluating Diurnal Salivary Uric Acid Across Pregnancy Among Healthy Women

Jenna L. Riis, Stephanie H. Cook, Nicole Letourneau, Tavis Campbell, Douglas A. Granger, Gerald F. Giesbrecht

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Uric acid levels during pregnancy have been examined as a potential indicator of risk for gestational diabetes mellites, hypertension, and related adverse birth outcomes. However, evidence supporting the utility of serum uric acid levels in predicting poor maternal and fetal health has been mixed. The lack of consistent findings may be due to limitations inherent in serum-based biomeasure evaluations, such as minimal repeated assessments and variability in the timing of these assessments. To address these gaps, we examined repeated measurements of diurnal salivary uric acid (sUA) levels in a sample of 44 healthy women across early-mid and late pregnancy. We assessed potential covariates and confounds of sUA levels and diurnal trajectories, as well as associations between maternal weight gain and blood pressure during pregnancy and sUA concentrations. Using multilevel linear models, we found sUA increased across pregnancy and displayed a robust diurnal pattern with the highest concentrations at waking, a steep decline in the early morning, and decreasing levels across the day. Maternal pre-pregnancy BMI, age, prior-night sleep duration, and fetal sex were associated with sUA levels and/or diurnal slopes. Maternal blood pressure and gestational weight gain also showed significant associations with sUA levels across pregnancy. Our results expand upon those found with serum UA measurements. Further, they demonstrate the feasibility of using at-home, minimally-invasive saliva sampling procedures to track UA levels across pregnancy with potential applications for the long-term monitoring of maternal cardiometabolic risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number813564
JournalFrontiers in Endocrinology
StatePublished - Mar 18 2022


  • APrON study
  • blood pressure (BP)
  • body mass index - BMI
  • diurnal pattern
  • pregnancy
  • saliva
  • uric acid (UA)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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