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Title: Expression of gastrin-releasing peptide (GRP) and GRP receptors in the pregnant human uterus at term.
Austin Authors: Whitley, J C;Giraud, A S;Shulkes, Arthur
Affiliation: Department of Surgery (Austin and Repatriation Medical Center, Austin Campus), University of Melbourne, Heidelberg, Australia
Issue Date: 1-Nov-1996
Publication information: The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism; 81(11): 3944-50
Abstract: Synthesis of both gastrin-releasing peptide (GRP) and messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) has been demonstrated in pregnant sheep, but studies in women have not been reported. Therefore, we examined the uterus and placenta of pregnant women at term for synthesis of GRP and expression of GRP receptor genes BRS-3 and GRP-R. A transcript of 0.95 kilobases, corresponding to GRP mRNA, was detected in endometrium and myometrium, but not in amnion, chorion, placenta, or nonpregnant endometrium. GRP immunoreactivity (GRP-ir) was detected in half (three of six) of the endometrial (1.23 +/- 0.04 pmol/g) and myometrial (0.73 +/- 0.04 pmol/g) samples and in some, but not all, samples of amnion (one of four subjects; 0.6 pmol/g), chorion (four of five subjects; 0.8 +/- 0.2 pmol/g), placenta (two of six subjects; 0.5 +/- 0.2 pmol/g), and amniotic fluid (four of six subjects; 59 +/- 19 fmol/mL). GRP-ir was present in the maternal circulation (44 +/- 12 fmol/mL) and was higher in plasma obtained from the umbilical artery (152 +/- 14 fmol/mL) and vein (143 +/- 24 fmol/mL). The major peak of GRP-ir in pregnant endometrial tissue was larger than GRP-(1-27), as determined by gel filtration chromatography. Minor peaks were also observed: two larger than the main form and one corresponding to GRP-(18-27). mRNA for GRP receptors GRP-R and BRS-3 was detected by semiquantitative reverse transcription-PCR. For both receptors, mRNA was higher in the pregnant endometrium than in the nonpregnant endometrium but was detected in all of the uteroplacental tissues examined. GRP-R mRNA predominated in the pregnant endometrium, whereas BRS-3 mRNA predominated in the membranes and placenta. In these tissues, PCR for BRS-3 mRNA gave rise to an additional product (approximately 50 bp larger). These studies demonstrated that a peptide larger than, but related to, GRP is synthesized in the pregnant human uterus and is secreted into the maternal and fetal circulations. The detection of mRNA for GRP-R, BRS-3, and possibly a transcript variant of BRS-3 as well as the detection of a peptide larger than, but related to, GRP suggest a novel regulatory unit in the human reproductive tract.
Gov't Doc #: 8923842
DOI: 10.1210/jcem.81.11.8923842
Type: Journal Article
Subjects: Amniotic Fluid.metabolism
Base Sequence
DNA Primers.genetics
Fetal Blood.metabolism
Gastrin-Releasing Peptide
Gene Expression
In Vitro Techniques
Polymerase Chain Reaction
RNA, Messenger.genetics.metabolism
Receptors, Bombesin.genetics
Appears in Collections:Journal articles

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