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J Vis Exp. 2012 Jan 6;(59):e3396. doi: 10.3791/3396.

Mouse model of surgically-induced endometriosis by auto-transplantation of uterine tissue.

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  • 1Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s Health and Division of Biological Sciences, University of Missouri, USA.

Abstract

Endometriosis is a chronic, painful disease whose etiology remains unknown. Furthermore, treatment of endometriosis can require laparoscopic removal of lesions, and/or chronic pharmaceutical management of pain and infertility symptoms. The cost associated with endometriosis has been estimated at 22 billion dollars per year in the United States. To further our understanding of mechanisms underlying this enigmatic disease, animal models have been employed. Primates spontaneously develop endometriosis and therefore primate models most closely resemble the disease in women. Rodent models, however, are more cost effective and readily available. The model that we describe here involves an autologous transfer of uterine tissue to the intestinal mesentery (Figure 1) and was first developed in the rat and later transferred to the mouse. The goal of the autologous rodent model of surgically-induced endometriosis is to mimic the disease in women. We and others have previously shown that the altered gene expression pattern observed in endometriotic lesions from mice or rats mirrors that observed in women with the disease. One advantage of performing the surgery in the mouse is that the abundance of transgenic mouse strains available can aid researchers in determining the role of specific components important in the establishment and growth of endometriosis. An alternative model in which excised human endometrial fragments are introduced to the peritoneum of immunocompromised mice is also widely used but is limited by the lack of a normal immune system which is thought to be important in endometriosis. Importantly, the mouse model of surgically induced endometriosis is a versatile model that has been used to study how the immune system, hormones and environmental factors affect endometriosis as well as the effects of endometriosis on fertility and pain.

PMID:
22257948
PMCID:
PMC3339870
DOI:
10.3791/3396
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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