Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Biol Reprod. 2011 Jun;84(6):1242-7. doi: 10.1095/biolreprod.110.087494. Epub 2011 Feb 16.

Cigarette smoke increases progesterone receptor and homeobox A10 expression in human endometrium and endometrial cells: a potential role in the decreased prevalence of endometrial pathology in smokers.

Author information

  • 1Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, Internal Medicine, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA.


Cigarette smoking has long been tied to a multitude of poor health outcomes; however, in reproductive biology, smoking has shown several unintuitive findings. Smoking is associated with significantly decreased rates of endometriosis and endometrial cancer. Here, we show that treatment with cigarette smoke extract leads to increased mRNA and protein expression of homeobox A10 (HOXA10) and progesterone receptor (PGR) as well as more rapid decidualization of endometrial stromal cells in vitro. In vivo, mice exposed to cigarette smoke similarly showed increased expression of HOXA10 and PGR in the endometrium. Both HOXA10 and PGR drive endometrial differentiation and are suppressed in endometrial tumors and in endometriosis. The increased expression found upon exposure to cigarette smoke may provide a protective effect, mediating the decreased incidence of endometrial disease among smokers. This mechanism contrasts with the accepted paradigm that the effects of smoking on the uterus are secondary to ovarian alterations rather than direct effects on endometrium as demonstrated here.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk