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J Reprod Fertil. 1990 Jan;88(1):71-9.

Glycosphingolipids of human myometrium and endometrium and their changes during the menstrual cycle, pregnancy and ageing.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Dalian Medical College, Liaoning, People's Republic of China.


The glycolipid composition of human myometrium and endometrium was examined at various stages of maturation and reproduction. The major neutral glycolipids of both myometrium and endometrium were identified by high-performance thin-layer chromatography as globo-series glycolipids, Gb3 and Gb4. The major acidic glycolipids (gangliosides) were identified similarly as GM3 and GD3, with lesser amounts of GM1, GD1a, and GT1b. During pregnancy, GD3 expression declined in both myometrium and endometrium, whereas GM3 expression increased. Reciprocal changes in GM3/GD3 expression were mirrored by appropriate changes in the glycosyltransferases required for their synthesis; alpha 2----3sialyltransferase activity increased approximately 3-fold during pregnancy, while alpha 2----8sialyltransferase activity declined to about 20%. The results focus attention on the glycolipids of uterine tissues, their regulation, and their possible role in reproduction and fertility.

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