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1 August 2003 Temporal and Spatial Expression of Integrins and Their Extracellular Matrix Ligands at the Maternal-Fetal Interface in the Rhesus Monkey During Pregnancy
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Abstract

The integrin and extracellular matrix protein (ECM)-mediated adhesion and invasion of the receptive maternal uterine endometrium by trophoblasts is a critical event in the complex physiological process of pregnancy. Although the process has been largely characterized in mice, the relevant mechanism in primates remains unclear. We investigated the expression patterns and dynamic alterations of integrin subunits (α1, α5, α6, β1, and β4) and their ECM ligands, such as laminin (LN), type IV collagen (Col IV), and fibronectin (FN), at the maternal-fetal interface during Gestational Days 15, 25, 50, and 100 and at full term in 20 pregnant rhesus monkeys. Immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization revealed that a relatively high expression of integrins occurred in trophoblast cells at Gestational Day 15, with the peak level occurring at Day 25. The expression level decreased from Day 50 to term. Along the invasive pathway, expression levels of integrin α1, α5, and β1 subunits were gradually elevated from the proximal to distal column, reaching peak level in the trophoblast shell, but were reduced in those invasive extravillous cytotrophoblast (EVCT) cells in contact with the decidua. Integrin α1, α5, β1, and β4 subunits were also highly expressed in decidual stromal cells and moderately expressed in the maternal epithelium and endothelium. Immunoreactive FN, LN, and Col IV were distributed in EVCT and decidual stromal cells and part of the uterine epithelial and endothelial cells. These data suggest that the correlated expression of integrins and their ECM ligands at the maternal-fetal interface might be involved in regulation of cell proliferation and differentiation and the counterbalanced invasion-accelerating and invasion-restraining processes in trophoblast cells during the early stage of pregnancy.

Li Qin, Yan-Ling Wang, Su-Xia Bai, Shao-Hui Ji, Wei Qiu, Shuang Tang, and Yun-Shang Piao "Temporal and Spatial Expression of Integrins and Their Extracellular Matrix Ligands at the Maternal-Fetal Interface in the Rhesus Monkey During Pregnancy," Biology of Reproduction 69(2), 563-571, (1 August 2003). https://doi.org/10.1095/biolreprod.103.015198
Received: 5 January 2003; Accepted: 1 April 2003; Published: 1 August 2003
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