Skip to main content

Partnerships > Global Pregnancy Collaboration (CoLab)


CoLab is pleased to announce their new website on the Global Health Network is up and running. With information about CoLab projects, publications and member centers, this website will greatly enhance the global visibility of CoLab. The site will be extremely useful for getting our message out about collaboration and the CoLab database, especially in LMICs. Please visit their website:


The Global Pregnancy Collaboration (CoLab) was initiated in November 2010 and at that time we recruited 20 groups from around the world to participate. The first meeting of the group was in April 2011 and at that time the goals and philosophy of the CoLab were established.


The goals of CoLab are three-fold. The overarching goal is to improve the health of women and their infants by facilitating research addressing adverse pregnancy outcomes. This would be accomplished by 1) facilitating access to data and biological samples for investigators worldwide, 2) by using the intellectual, data, and biological resources of the CoLab to perform large studies that could not be accomplished by any single centre, and 3) working to establish data and biological sample resources in developing countries.

Oversight of these efforts would be accomplished by the requirement that studies that utilize resources of the CoLab would be sponsored by a member group, who would be responsible for the timely completion of the project in accordance with good research practices and the Procedures of Operation of the CoLab. Further, access to samples and data would not be restricted but rather facilitated by CoLab. Thus, if an application for data or biological materials could be met by resources of CoLab centres interested in participating in the study, this would be supported by CoLab infrastructure even if this were not a majority of CoLab members. Importantly, CoLab would support access to materials and, in early years, additional infrastructure but the general analytical expenses of the study would be supported by the applicant.

Current Progress

The CoLab now includes 38 member centres from around the world. Data are available for more than 300,000 pregnancies and biological materials have been collected on at least 4,000 women prior to the clinically evident problems. In keeping with its mission, the group has provided data and biological materials for several ongoing studies. However, in the last year, the activities of the group have expanded. In recognition of the fact that organized information on how to perform studies related to adverse pregnancy outcomes would be beneficial to researchers for studies done worldwide, CoLab has elected to prepare “white papers” on important topics to guide and harmonise research. In the last year we have published two position papers. One describes strategies for effective placental research: Optimising sample collection for placental research. Burton GJ, Sebire NJ, Myatt L, Tannetta D, Wang YL, Sadovsky Y, Staff AC, Redman CW. Placenta 2014 Jan;35(1):9-22. The second addresses appropriate data collection for studies of pre-eclampsia, suggesting data and biological samples to be collected in minimal and optimal data sets: Strategy for standardization of preeclampsia research. Myatt L, Redman CW, Staff AC, Hansson S, Wilson ML, Laivuori H, Poston L, Roberts JM; Global Pregnancy CoLaboratory. Hypertension 2014 Jun;63(6):1293-301.

To most effectively utilize the latter data collection strategy we have developed an online database, COLLECT, that will standardize collection of appropriate data for preeclampsia research. The eventual goal of this approach is to standardize data collected in various studies to facilitate collaboration and combination of data in future studies of pre-eclampsia and other adverse pregnancy outcomes. This is done through an online database for investigators worldwide that can be either used online or as a stand alone using off line computers. For more information about COLLECT, visit:

Current Projects

Project Title Investigators
The role of placental microparticles, Toll-like receptors and inflammation in PE.

PI: Brandie DePaoli Taylor, PhD, MPH

Sponsor: Jim Roberts, MD
The PREDICTV (PReeclampsia Early Determination for Intervention, Cure and Therapeutics by Vasopressin) Study PI: Mark Santillan, MD
Identification of molecular subclasses of preeclampsia. 

Co-PIs: Shannon Bainbridge, PhD and Brian Cox, PhD

Sponsor: Jim Roberts, MD
Reverse Phenotyping at time of disease Jenny Myers, Leslie Myatt, Jim Roberts, Roberta Ness, Lucilla Poston
The Sisterhood Study (formerly Sisters and Daughters of Women with Preeclampsia) Hilary S. Gammill, Roberta Ness, James M. Roberts, Eleni Tsigas, Alina Brewer; Kasey Dickenson; Ingrid Granne, Chris Redman
Publish 2015 CoLab Conference Proceedings, Symposium on Placental Health (published) 

Graham Burton, Lynn Cox, Stefan Hansson, Andrew Murray, Les Myatt, Chris Redman, Jim Roberts, Neil Sebire, Dionne Tannetta, Daniel Vaiman

Placental Working Group (reinstituted after Rebecca finished PhD) Neil Sebire, Donna Russell, Melissa Wilson, Mark Santillan, Anna David, Rebecca Spencer, Tom McElrath, Susan Fisher, Hannele Laivuori
Rare Placenta Procurement (reinstituted after Rebecca finished PhD) Rebecca Spencer, Mark Santillan, Susan Fisher, Melissa Wilson
Microparticle Proteomics as a Marker for Impending Preterm Birth  PI: Thomas McElrath
Maternal-fetal genomics to identify low frequency and rare variants contributing to preeclampsia risk

PI: Kathryn Gray

Sponsor: Thomas McElrath
Early Pregnancy/Prepregnancy Investigational Collaborative (EPPIC) Co-PIs: Mark Santillan and Thomas McElrath
In Addition to “Seed” Should We Also Be Considering “Soil” in the Genesis of Preeclampsia? (A study on pre and early pregnancy decidua)

PI: Kirk Conrad

Sponsor: Jim Roberts
Sex specific differences in maternal hemodynamic adaptation to pregnancy 

PI: Sarah Schalekamp-Timmermans, Eric Steegers

Manuscript on nutrition in pregnancy  Les Myatt (chair), Kent Thornburg, Anna David, Gabriela Cormick, Kim Harding, Hannele Laivuori, Tiina Jaaskelainen, Eleni Tsigas


  • The EMPOWER Program
    • Click here for the EMPOWER program description
    • Click here for the EMPOWER LOI Guidelines
    • Click here for the EMPOWER Mentor Application