Fetal-maternal interactions during the establishment of pregnancy in ruminants.
ABSTRACT This review integrates established information with new insights into molecular and physiological mechanisms responsible for events leading to pregnancy recognition, endometrial receptivity, and implantation with emphasis on sheep. After formation of the corpus luteum, progesterone acts on the endometrium and stimulates blastocyst growth and elongation to form a filamentous conceptus (embryo/fetus and associated extraembryonic membranes). Recurrent early pregnancy loss in the uterine gland knockout ewe model indicates that endometrial epithelial secretions are essential for peri-implantation blastocyst survival and growth. The elongating sheep conceptus secretes interferon tau (IFNT) that acts on the endometrium to inhibit development of the luteolytic mechanism by inhibiting transcription of the estrogen receptor alpha (ESR1) gene in the luminal (LE) and superficial ductal glandular (sGE) epithelia, which prevents estrogen-induction of oxytocin receptors (OXTR) and production of luteolytic prostaglandin F2-alpha pulses. Progesterone downregulates its receptors (PGR) in LE and then GE, correlating with a reduction of anti-adhesive MUC1 (mucin glycoprotein one) and induction of secreted LGALS15 (galectin 15) and SPP1 (secreted phosphoprotein one), that are proposed to regulate trophectoderm growth and adhesion. IFNT acts on the LE to induce WNT7A (wingless-type MMTV integration site family member 7A) and to stimulate LGALS15, CTSL (cathepsin L), and CST3 (cystatin C), which may regulate conceptus development and implantation. During the peri-implantation period, trophoblast giant binucleate cells (BNC) begin to differentiate from mononuclear trophectoderm cells, migrate and then fuse with the uterine LE as well as each other to form multinucleated syncytial plaques. Trophoblast giant BNC secrete chorionic somatomammotropin (CSH1 or placental lactogen) that acts on the endometrial glands to stimulate their morphogenesis and differentiated function. The interactive, coordinated and stage-specific effects of ovarian and placental hormones regulate endometrial events necessary for fetal-maternal interactions and successful establishment of pregnancy.
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ABSTRACT: The expression and regulation of endometrial proteins are crucial for conceptus implantation and development. However, little is known about site-specific proteome profiles of the mammalian endometrium during the peri-implantation period. We utilised a two-dimensional gel electrophoresis/mass spectrometry-based proteomics approach to compare and identify differentially expressed proteins in sheep endometrium. Caruncular and intercaruncular endometrium were collected on days 12 (C12) and 16 (C16) of the oestrous cycle and at three stages of pregnancy corresponding to conceptus pre-attachment (P12), implantation (P16) and post-implantation (P20). Abundance and localisation changes in differentially expressed proteins were determined by western blot and immunohistochemistry. In caruncular endometrium, 45 protein spots (5% of total spots) altered between day 12 of pregnancy (P12) and P16 while 85 protein spots (10% of total spots) were differentially expressed between P16 and C16. In intercaruncular endometrium, 31 protein spots (2% of total spots) were different between P12 and P16 while 44 protein spots (4% of total spots) showed differential expression between C12 and C16. The pattern of protein changes between caruncle and intercaruncle sites was markedly different. Among the protein spots with implantation-related changes in volume, 11 proteins in the caruncular endometrium and six proteins in the intercaruncular endometrium, with different functions such as protein synthesis and degradation, antioxidant defence, cell structural integrity, adhesion and signal transduction, were identified. Our findings highlight the different but important roles of the caruncular and intercaruncular proteins during early pregnancy.Reproduction (Cambridge, England) 04/2014; 147(5-5):599-614. DOI:10.1530/REP-13-0600 · 3.26 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The ovine blastocyst hatches from the zona pellucida by Day 8 and develops into an ovoid or tubular conceptus (embryo and associated extraembryonic membranes) that grows and elongates into a filamentous form between Days 12 and 16. The trophectoderm of the elongating conceptus synthesizes and secretes interferon tau (IFNT) as well as prostaglandins (PGs) via prostaglandin synthase two (PTGS2). Intrauterine infusion of a PTGS2 inhibitor prevents conceptus elongation in sheep. Although many PGs are secreted, PGI2 and PGJ2 can activate nuclear peroxisome proliferator activator receptors (PPARs) that heterodimerize with retinoic X receptors (RXRs) to regulate gene expression and cellular function. Expression of PPARD, PPARG, RXRA, RXRB and RXRG is detected in the elongating ovine conceptus, and nuclear PPARD and PPARG are present in the trophectoderm. Consequently, PPARD and PPARG are hypothesized to have essential roles in conceptus elongation in ruminants. In utero loss-of-function studies of PPARD and PPARG in the ovine conceptus trophectoderm were conducted using morpholino antisense oligonucleotides (MAO) that inhibit mRNA translation. Elongating, filamentous type conceptuses were recovered from ewes infused with a control morpholino or PPARD MAO. In contrast, PPARG MAO resulted in severely growth-retarded conceptuses or conceptus fragments with apoptotic trophectoderm. In order to identify PPARG regulated genes, PPARG ChIP-Seq and RNA-Seq were conducted using Day 14 ovine conceptuses. These analyses revealed candidate PPARG-regulated genes involved in biological pathways including lipid and glucose uptake, transport, and metabolism. Collectively, results support the hypothesis that PTGS2-derived PGs and PPARG are essential regulators of conceptus elongation with specific roles in trophectoderm survival and proliferation. Copyright 2014 by The Society for the Study of Reproduction.Biology of Reproduction 12/2014; DOI:10.1095/biolreprod.114.123877 · 3.45 Impact Factor