The transcriptional regulation of the major histocompatibility complex class (MHC) Ib gene HLA-G differs from the classical MHC class I genes. The cis-acting regulatory elements typical for classical MHC class I promoters are divergent in the promoter of HLA-G, rendering this gene unresponsive to NF-KB, IRF-1, and class II transactivator (CIITA)-mediated activation pathways. However, as we have previously shown, transactivation of HLA-G is regulated by CREB-1. Because CREB-1 is ubiquitously expressed, this observation does not explain the tissue-restricted expression of HLA-G in extravillous cytotrophoblasts. Using HLA-G-expressing JEG-3 cells and HLA-G-deficient JAR trophoblast-derived choriocarcinoma cells as a model, we have investigated the contribution of DNA methylation and histone acetylation in the transcriptional activation of HLA-G. Despite similar levels of DNA methylation both in JEG3 and JAR cells, we found the levels of histone acetylation in HLA-G promoter chromatin to be significantly enhanced in JEG3 cells coinciding with HLA-G expression
The pituitary adenylate cyclase activating polypeptide (PACAP) has several effects in en-docrine and reproductive organs, including the placenta. PACAP is generally known as a survival-promoting peptide acting on divergent signal transduction pathways. However, its effects on the survival and signaling mechanisms of trophoblast cells are not known. In the present study we found that 1-h pretreatment with PACAP38 did not significantly influence the survival of JAR cytotrophoblast cells. However, the survival rate of cells exposed to oxidative stress or CoCl_2-induced in vitro hypoxia showed a significant fur-ther decrease in PACAP-treated cells, implying that PACAP sensitizes the cells to these stressors. This was not observed in the case of lipopolysaccharide or ethanol treatment. Western blot data revealed that, in cells exposed to oxidative stress, PACAP treatment decreased phosphorylation of all extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), phospho-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), protein kinase B, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), and phospho-glycogen synthase kinase (GSK) and the expression of bax. The overall effect seems to be a sensitizing effect in almost all examined pathways when oxidative stress was applied, which may explain the enhancing effect of PACAP on cell death in contrast to most other cell types examined so far. Our data show that the sig-naling mechanism of PACAP may be different in trophoblast cells to that observed in other cell lines.
In the human placenta, there are two types of placental macrophages Hofbauer cells of fetal villi and decidual macrophages of maternal decidua basalis. Placental macrophages adopt a specialized phenotype that may hold a key role in synthesis of vital mediators involved in the establishment and maintenance of pregnancy, parturition and maternal-fetal tolerance. Aberrant behavior of these macrophages can affect trophoblast functions and placental development and potentially can lead to a spectrum of adverse pregnancy outcomes. Yet, the populations and functions of placental macrophages in women with different parity and women with preeclampsia remain ill-defined and subject of controversy. Immuno-histochemical study using CD68 primary antibody revealed a significant increase in number of CD68 positive fetal and decidual macrophages in preeclamptic subgroups as compared to controls. Fetal macrophages were seen to be localized near fetal vessel wall and near syncytium which were significantly increased in primiparous preeclamptic subgroup. Our study assumed that there may be intermingling of signals between macrophages and trophoblast cells resulting in impairment of trophoblast invasion and spiral artery remodeling which is the primary placental defect in pregnancies complicated by preeclampsia.
The paper presents two methods of an automatic tropho-blasts and villi detection in histological images to support the pathomorphological diagnostic procedure. The studied slides represent the placenta villi from spontaneous miscarriage stained with the Hematoxylin and Eosin. The proposed methods are based on texture analyses, as Local Binary Pattern and Unser, and mathematical morphology operations. The research on placenta villi detection and the evaluation on the histological images is needed to support clinical studies. The results of the automatic trophoblasts and villi detection were compared with the expert’s annotations. The average coverage of the detected trophoblast areas is 93.65% for the Unser- method and 77.06% for the LBP method. The obtained results confirm efficiency of the proposed solutions.
Fetal and neonatal alloimmune thromboctyopenia due to maternal human platelet antigen (HPA)- la antibodies affects primigravidas. Immunization must occur early in pregnancy before fetal platelets enter maternal blood via fetomaternal hemorrhage. The HPA-1 a antigen is located on platelet glycoprotein (GP)IIIa (CD61, β3 integrin), which is also present on the placental syncytiotrophoblast (ST) and in direct contact with maternal blood. Since ST debris is shed into maternal blood during pregnancy, this material might be immunogenic in vivo. For experimental purposes, we prepared and characterized ST microparticles (STMPs) in vitro from term placentas. Phenotype analysis by flow cytometry and Western blotting showed that STMP expressed more placental alkaline phosphatase (PLAP) than GPIIIa. Quantitative real-time PCR demonstrated expression of human placental lactogen (HPL), human chorionic gonadotrophin (HCG), and GPIIIa by STMP, in the order HPL > HCG > GPIIIa. PLAP, HPL, and HCG are trophoblast-specific proteins. These STMPs may be a useful model for studying the natural ST debris in plasma of pregnant women.