Mimicking the Events of Menstruation in the Murine Uterus

Uterine Biology Laboratory, Prince Henry's Institute of Medical Research, Clayton, Victoria 3168, Australia.
Biology of Reproduction (Impact Factor: 3.32). 11/2003; 69(4):1273-80. DOI: 10.1095/biolreprod.103.016550
Source: PubMed


Menstruation and endometrial regeneration occur during every normal reproductive cycle in women and some Old World primates. Many of the cellular and molecular events of menstruation have been identified by correlative or in vitro studies, but the lack of a convenient model for menstruation in a laboratory animal has restricted functional studies. In this study, a mouse model for menstruation first described by Finn in the 1980s has been modified for use in a commonly used inbred strain of mouse. A decidual stimulus was applied into the uterine lumen of appropriately primed mice and leukocyte numbers and apoptosis were examined over time following progesterone withdrawal. Endometrial tissue breakdown was initiated after 12-16 h, and by 24 h, the entire decidual zone had been shed. Re-epithelialization was nearly complete by 36 h and the endometrium was fully restored by 48 h. Leukocyte numbers increased significantly in the basal zone by 12 h after progesterone withdrawal, preceding stromal destruction. Stromal apoptosis was detected by TUNEL staining at 0 and 12 h but decreased by 16 h after progesterone withdrawal. This mouse model thus mimics many of the events of human menstruation and has the potential to assist in elucidation of the functional roles of a variety of factors thought to be important in both menstruation and endometrial repair.

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    • "In mammals such as humans and rodents, the estrous cycle prepares the female for reproduction. The estrous cycle is under control of sex steroids hormones (Brasted et al., 2003) but also under cytokines instruction (López and Stanley, 2005; Blitek et al., 2012). Cytokines are essential components of the complex communication network in the female reproductive tract during estrous cycle (Schaefer et al., 2005). "
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    ABSTRACT: The dynamic regulation of NF-κB activity in the uterus maintains a favorable environment of cytokines necessary to prepare for pregnancy throughout the estrous cycle. Recently, the mechanisms that directly regulate the NF-κB transcriptional activity in different tissues are of growing interest. IκBNS and BCL-3 are negative nuclear regulators of NF-κB activity that regulate IL-6 and TNF-α transcription, respectively. Both cytokines have been described as important factors in the remodeling of uterus for blastocyst implantation. In this work we analyzed in ICR mice the mRNA expression and protein production profile of IL-6, TNF-α, and their correspondent negative transcription regulators IκBNS or BCL-3 using real-time PCR, western blot and immunochemistry. We found that the expression of TNF-α and IL-6 was oscillatory along the estrous cycle, and its low expression coincided with the presence of BCL-3 and IκBNS, and vice versa, when the presence of the regulators was subtle, the expression of TNF-α and IL-6 was exacerbated. When we compared the production of TNF-α and IL-6 in the different estrous stages relating with diestrus we found that at estrus there is an important increase of the cytokines (p<0.05) decreasing at metestrus to reach the basal expression at diestrus. In the immunochemistry analysis we found that at diestrus BCL-3 is distributed all over the tissue with a barely detected TNF-α, but on the contrary, at estrus the expression of BCL-3 is not detected with TNF-α clearly observable along the tissue; the same phenomenon occur in the analysis of IκBNS and IL-6. With that evidence we suggest that the expression of TNF-α and IL-6 might be regulated through NF-κB nuclear regulators BCL-3 and IκBNS in the uterus of mice as has been demonstrated in other systems.
    Molecular Immunology 10/2015; 68(2). DOI:10.1016/j.molimm.2015.09.020 · 2.97 Impact Factor
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    • "All animal procedures were carried out in accordance with UK legal requirements and in under licensed approval from the UK Home Office. In the current study a mouse model of menstruation described by Brasted et al [15] was modified to include non-surgical induction of decidualisation and a longer decidualisation period. Uterine tissues were also collected during a period of active shedding and repair, time-points that have not been previously described. "
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    ABSTRACT: In women dynamic changes in uterine tissue architecture occur during each menstrual cycle. Menses, characterised by the shedding of the upper functional layer of the endometrium, is the culmination of a cascade of irreversible changes in tissue function including stromal decidualisation, inflammation and production of degradative enzymes. The molecular mechanisms that contribute to the rapid restoration of tissue homeostasis at time of menses are poorly understood. A modified mouse model of menses was developed to focus on the events occurring within the uterine lining during endometrial shedding/repair. Decidualisation, vaginal bleeding, tissue architecture and cell proliferation were evaluated at 4, 8, 12, and 24 hours after progesterone (P4) withdrawal; mice received a single injection of bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) 90 mins before culling. Expression of genes implicated in the regulation of mesenchymal to epithelial transition (MET) was determined using a RT2 PCR profiler array, qRTPCR and bioinformatic analysis. Mice exhibited vaginal bleeding between 4 and 12 hours after P4 withdrawal, concomitant with detachment of the decidualised cell mass from the basal portion of the endometrial lining. Immunostaining for BrdU and pan cytokeratin revealed evidence of epithelial cell proliferation and migration. Cells that appeared to be in transition from a mesenchymal to an epithelial cell identity were identified within the stromal compartment. Analysis of mRNAs encoding genes expressed exclusively in the epithelial or stromal compartments, or implicated in MET, revealed dynamic changes in expression, consistent with a role for reprogramming of mesenchymal cells so that they could contribute to re-epithelialisation. These studies have provided novel insights into the cellular processes that contribute to re-epithelialisation post-menses implicating both epithelial cell migration and mesenchymal cell differentiation in restoration of an intact epithelial cell layer. These insights may inform development of new therapies to induce rapid healing in the endometrium and other tissues and offer hope to women who suffer from heavy menstrual bleeding.
    PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(1):e86378. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0086378 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    • "Subsequently, the process of progesterone withdrawal was mimicked, and the endometrium underwent breakdown and shedding. The model was optimized nearly 30 years later by Salamonsen.2 We have previously established a mouse menstrual-like model by pharmacological progesterone withdrawal3 with mifepristone administration and the mouse menstrual-like models have been used to study the mechanism underlying menstruation.1-6 "
    X Xu · S Guan · B He · J Wang ·
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    ABSTRACT: Cyclic shedding of the endometrium is unique to menstruating species. The status of the decidua in mouse menstrual-like models seems to differ from that of the predecidua in humans before endometrial breakdown. The aim of this study was to determine how this difference in decidual status is related to endometrial breakdown. A mouse menstrual-like model was generated by pharmacological progesterone withdrawal. Histomorphological analysis and reticular fiber staining were used to evaluate endometrial status. In situ zymography was used to determine the localization of active collagenase and gelatinase. The functional endometrial layer containing the mature decidual-like zone (MDZ) and predecidual-like zone (PZ) underwent breakdown. The reticular fibers underwent disruption and fragmentation and became loose or disappeared at 12 h in the PZ, where active collagenase and gelatinase were limited. The reticular fibers were visibly reduced at 24 h in the MDZ, where active collagenase was detected. A few reticular fibers remained; however, the functional layer had sloughed into the lumen of the uterus. The results showed that reticular fibers of the PZ are actively degraded during endometrial shedding.
    European journal of histochemistry: EJH 09/2013; 57(3):e25. DOI:10.4081/ejh.2013.e25 · 2.04 Impact Factor
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