Human Endometrial DNA Methylome Is Cycle-Dependent and Is Associated With Gene Expression Regulation
ABSTRACT Human endometrium undergoes major gene expression changes resulting in altered cellular functions in response to cyclic variations in circulating estradiol and progesterone, largely mediated by transcription factors and nuclear receptors. In addition to classical modulators, epigenetic mechanisms regulate gene expression during development, in response to environmental factors, in some diseases, and have roles in steroid hormone action. Herein, we tested the hypothesis that DNA methylation plays a role in gene expression regulation in human endometrium in different hormonal milieux. High throughput, genome-wide DNA methylation profiling of endometrial samples in proliferative, early and mid-secretory phases revealed dynamic DNA methylation patterns with segregation of proliferative from secretory phase samples by unsupervised cluster analysis of differentially methylated genes. Changes involved different frequencies of gain and loss of methylation within or outside CpG islands. Comparison of changes in transcriptomes and corresponding DNA methylomes from the same samples revealed association of DNA methylation and gene expression in a number of loci, some important in endometrial biology. Human endometrial stromal fibroblasts treated in vitro with estradiol and progesterone exhibited DNA methylation changes in several genes observed in proliferative and secretory phase tissues, respectively. Together, the data support that epigenetic mechanisms are involved in gene expression regulation in human endometrium in different hormonal milieux, adding endometrium to a small number of normal adult tissues exhibiting dynamic DNA methylation. The data also raise the possibility that interplay between steroid hormone and methylome dynamics regulate normal endometrial functions and, if abnormal, may result in endometrial dysfunction and associated disorders.
Conference Paper: Modulation of the immune system during post-partum uterine infection[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Postpartum uterine inflammation (endometritis) in the dairy cow is associated with lower fertility at both the time of infection and after the inflammation has resolved. We hypothesized that aberrant DNA methylation may be involved in the subfertility associated with uterine inflammation. The objective of this study was to characterize genome-wide DNA methylation and gene expression in the endometrium of dairy cows with subclinical endometritis (SCE). Endometrial tissues were obtained at 29 days postpartum (n = 12), and microarrays were used to characterize transcription and DNA methylation. Analyses revealed 1,856 probes differentially expressed in animals with SCE (n = 6) compared with controls (CON, n = 6, P < 0.05, Storey Multiple testing correction) and 2,976 probes with significant correlation between gene expression and bacteriology score. No significant associations among DNA methylation and gene expression were detected. Analysis of transcription data using the Database for Annotation, Visualization, and Integrated Discovery and Gene Set Enrichment Analysis identified several pathways and processes enriched in SCE cows, with the majority related to the immune response. Furthermore, the top ontology terms enriched in genes that had expression data correlated to bacteriology score were: Defense response, inflammatory response, and innate immune response. Gene expression profiles in cows with subclinical endometritis in this study indicate that the immune response is activated, potentially resulting in a local proinflammatory environment in the uterus. If this period of inflammation is prolonged it could result in tissue damage or failure to complete involution of the uterus, which may create a suboptimal environment for future pregnancy.2014 ADSA-ASAS-CSAS Joint Annual Meeting; 07/2014
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ABSTRACT: Implantation is an essential process during establishment of pregnancy in mammals. It is initiated with the attachment of the blastocyst to a receptive uterine epithelium followed by its invasion into the stromal tissue. These events are profoundly regulated by the steroid hormones 17β-estradiol (E) and progesterone (P). During the past several years, mouse models harboring conditional gene knockout mutations have become powerful tools for determining the functional roles of cellular factors involved in various aspects of implantation biology. Studies employing these genetic models as well as primary cultures of human endometrial cells have established that the estrogen receptor alpha (ESR1), the progesterone receptor (PGR), and their downstream target genes critically regulate uterine growth and differentiation, which in turn control embryo-endometrial interactions during early pregnancy. These studies have uncovered a diverse array of molecular cues, which are produced under the influence of ESR1 and PGR and exchanged between the epithelial and stromal compartments of the uterus during the progressive phases of implantation. These paracrine signals are critical for acquisition of uterine receptivity and functional interactions with the embryo. This review highlights recent work describing paracrine mechanisms that govern steroid-regulated uterine stromal-epithelial dialogue during implantation and their roles in fertility and disease.Molecular Endocrinology 07/2014; 28(9):me20141074. DOI:10.1210/me.2014-1074 · 4.20 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Do endometrial stromal fibroblasts (eSF) in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) (eSFpcos) exhibit altered estrogen and/or progesterone (P4) responses, which may explain some of the adverse reproductive outcomes and endometrial pathologies in these women? In vitro, eSF from women with PCOS exhibit an aberrant decidualization response and concomitant changes in pro-inflammatory cytokine, chemokine and matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) release and immune cell chemoattraction. In vivo these aberrations may result in suboptimal implantation and predisposition to endometrial cancer. The endometrium in women with PCOS has several abnormalities including progesterone (P4) resistance at the gene expression level, likely contributing to subfertility, pregnancy complications and increased endometrial cancer risk in PCOS women. Prospective, university-based, case-control, in vitro study. Cultures of eSFPCOS (n = 12, Rotterdam and NIH criteria) and eSFControl (Ctrl) (n = 6, regular cycle length, no signs of hyperandrogenism) were treated with vehicle, estradiol (E2, 10 nM) or E2P4 (10 nM/1 μM) for 14 days. Progesterone receptor (PGR) mRNA was assessed with quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) and eSF decidualization was confirmed by insulin-like growth factor-binding protein-1 (IGFBP-1) transcript and protein expression. Fractalkine (CX3CL1), granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), interleukin (IL) 6, 8 and 11, macrophage chemoattractant protein (MCP) 1 and 3, CCL5 (RANTES) and MMPs (MMP1, 2, 3, 7, 9, 10 and 12) were measured in conditioned media by Luminex multiplex assays, and chemotactic activity of the conditioned media was tested in a migration assay using CD14+ monocyte and CD4+ T-cell migration assay. Effects of IL-6 (0.02, 0.2, 2 or 20 ng/ml) or IL-8 (0.04, 0.4, 4, or 40 ng/ml) or combination (0.2 ng/ml IL-6 and 4.0 ng/ml IL-8) on 14-d decidualization were also tested. ANOVA with pre-planned contrasts was used for statistical analysis. Hormonal challenge with E2P4 to induce decidualization revealed two distinct subsets of eSFPCOS. Eight eSFPCOS (dPCOS) and all eSFCtrl (dCtrl) cultures showed a normal decidualization response to E2P4 as determined by morphology and IGFBP-1 secretion. However, 4 eSFPCOS cultures showed blunted decidualization (ndPCOS) in morphological assessment and low IGFBP-1 levels even though all three groups exhibited normal estrogen-mediated increase in PGR expression. Interestingly dPCOS had decreased IL-6 and GM-SCF secretion compared with dCtrl, whereas the ndPCOS cultures showed increased IL-6 and 8, MCP1, RANTES and GM-CSF secretion at base-line and/or in response to E2 or E2P4 compared with dCtrl and/or dPCOS. Furthermore, even though PGR expression was similar in all three groups, P4 inhibition of MMP secretion was attenuated in ndPCOS resulting in higher MMP2 and 3 levels. The conditioned media from ndPCOS had increased chemoattractic activity compared with dCtrl and dPCOS media. Exogenously added IL-6 and/or 8 did not inhibit decidualization in eSFCtrl indicating that high levels of these cytokines in ndPCOS samples were not likely a cause for the aberrant decidualization. This is an in vitro study with a small sample size, utilizing stromal cell cultures from proliferative and secretory phase endometrium. The effect of PCOS on endometrial epithelium, another major histoarchitectural cell compartment of the endometrium, was not evaluated and should be considered in future studies. Furthermore, results obtained should also be confirmed in a larger data set and with mid/late secretory phase in vivo samples and models. The alterations seen in ndPCOS may contribute to endometrial dysfunction, subfertility and pregnancy complications in PCOS women. The results emphasize the importance of understanding immune responses related to the implantation process and normal endometrial homeostasis in women with PCOS. Sigrid Juselius Foundation, Academy of Finland, Finnish Medical Foundation, Orion-Farmos Research Foundation (to T.T.P.), the NIH Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) U54HD 055764-07 Specialized Cooperative Centers Program in Reproduction and Infertility Research (to L.C.G.), the NICHD the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards grant 1F32HD074423-03 (to J.C.C.). The authors have no competing interests. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.Human Reproduction 03/2015; 30(5). DOI:10.1093/humrep/dev055 · 4.59 Impact Factor