Mitochondrial and Telomere Studies in Pregnancy
– AND –
Placental Mitochondrial Toxicity in HIV Therapy during Pregnancy
– AND –
Measuring Mitochondrial Aging, Application to HIV Infection and Therapy AND Cellular Aging and HIV Comorbidities in Women and Children


Primary Contact: Evelyn Maan, Research Manager, 604-875-2000 ext. 2463,

About the study: CARMA-1-PREG is investigating factors related to pre-term deliveries among HIV positive women. Research has shown that HIV+ pregnant women are 2x more likely to deliver their babies early (more than 3 weeks before their due dates), compared to women without HIV. The purpose of CARMA-1-PREG is to study the effects of particular anti-HIV medications on pregnant women and on their infants by examining two markers of cell function: the length of DNA at the ends of chromosomes (“telomeres”) and the energy producing parts of the cell (“mitochondrial DNA”). CARMA-1-PREG also investigates how HIV, anti-HIV medications and other factors (e.g. the bacterial environment of a pregnant woman’s vagina) may affect early delivery.

Why is this research important?  Anti-HIV medication has dramatically reduced the risk of infants getting HIV from their HIV+ mothers (from 25% to less than 1%). However, research has demonstrated that HIV+ pregnant women are twice as likely to have a pre-term delivery when compared to women without HIV. Better understanding the factor(s) which cause these pre-term deliveries among HIV+ women is integral to the health of mothers and infants living with or exposed to HIV.

Study status: Recruiting

Who can participate: Pregnant women living with HIV who are taking, or are going to be taking, anti-HIV medication during their pregnancy.

Study Results/Publications: 

Money DM, Wagner EC, Maan EJ, Chaworth-Musters T, Gadawski I, van Schalkwyk JE, Forbes JC, Burdge D, Albert AYK, Lohn Z, Côté HCF, and The Oak Tree Clinic Research Group “Evidence of subclinical mtDNA alterations in HIV-infected pregnant women receiving combination antiretroviral therapy compared to HIV-negative pregnant women” PLoS One. 2015 Aug 6;10(8):e0135041. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0135041. eCollection 2015.

Imam T, Jitratkosol MH, Soudeyns H, Sattha B, Gadawski I, Maan E, Forbes JC, Alimenti A, Lapointe N, Lamarre V, Money DM, Côté HC; CIHR Emerging Team Grant on HIV Therapy and Aging: CARMA. Leukocyte telomere length in HIV-infected pregnant women treated with antiretroviral drugs during pregnancy and their uninfected infants. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2012 Aug 15;60(5):495-502. PMID: 22580562

Jitratkosol MH, Sattha B, Maan EJ, Gadawski I, Harrigan PR, Forbes JC, Alimenti A, van Schalkwyk J, Money DM, Côté HC; CIHR Emerging Team Grant on HIV Therapy and Aging (CARMA). Blood mitochondrial DNA mutations in HIV-infected women and their infants exposed to HAART during pregnancy. AIDS. 2012 Mar 27;26(6):675-83. PMID: 22436539

Co-Investigators: Dr. Helene Cote, Dr. Julie van Schalkwyk, Dr. Isabelle Boucoiran, Dr. Melanie Murray, Dr. Ariane Alimenti, Dr. Neora Pick

Funded by: CIHR

Partners: Positive Women’s Network

CARMA 1 Participant Consent Form