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Cytokine Growth Factor Rev. 2007 Jun-Aug;18(3-4):287-98. Epub 2007 May 18.

GM-CSF regulation of embryo development and pregnancy.

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  • 1Research Centre for Reproductive Health, Discipline of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA, Australia. sarah.robertson@adelaide.edu.au

Abstract

The reproductive tissues undergo profound structural changes and major immune adaptation to accommodate pregnancy. Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) is one of an array of cytokines with pivotal roles in embryo implantation and subsequent development. Several cell lineages in the reproductive tract and gestational tissues synthesise GM-CSF under direction by ovarian steroid hormones and signalling agents originating in male seminal fluid and the conceptus. The pre-implantation embryo, invading placental trophoblast cells and the abundant populations of leukocytes controlling maternal immune tolerance are all subject to GM-CSF regulation. GM-CSF deficiency in pregnancy adversely impacts fetal and placental development, as well as progeny viability and growth after birth, highlighting this cytokine as a central maternal determinant of pregnancy outcome with clinical relevance in human fertility.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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