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Mol Hum Reprod. 2013 Feb;19(2):82-92. doi: 10.1093/molehr/gas052. Epub 2012 Nov 16.

Expression and localization of inhibitor of differentiation (ID) proteins during tissue and vascular remodelling in the human corpus luteum.

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MRC Centre for Reproductive Health, The University of Edinburgh, The Queen's Medical Research Institute, 47 Little France Crescent, Edinburgh EH16 4TJ, UK.


Members of the transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) superfamily are likely to have major roles in the regulation of tissue and vascular remodelling in the corpus luteum (CL). There are four inhibitor-of-differentiation (ID1-4) genes that are regulated by members of the TGF-β superfamily and are involved in the transcriptional regulation of cell growth and differentiation. We studied their expression, localization and regulation in dated human corpora lutea from across the luteal phase (n = 22) and after human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) administration in vivo (n = 5), and in luteinized granulosa cells (LGCs), using immunohistochemistry and quantitative RT-PCR. ID1-4 can be localized to multiple cell types in the CL across the luteal phase. Endothelial cell ID3 (P < 0.05) and ID4 (P < 0.05) immunostaining intensities peak at the time of angiogenesis but overall ID1 (P < 0.05) and ID3 (P < 0.05) expression peaks at the time of luteolysis, and luteal ID3 expression is inhibited by hCG in vivo (P < 0.01). In LGC cultures in vitro, hCG had no effect on ID1, down-regulated ID3 (P < 0.001), and up-regulated ID2 (P < 0.001) and ID4 (P < 0.01). Bone morphogenic proteins (BMPs) had no effect on ID4 expression but up-regulated ID1 (P < 0.01 to P < 0.005). BMP up-regulation of ID2 (P < 0.05) was additive to the hCG up-regulation of ID2 expression (P < 0.001), while BMP cancelled out the down regulative effect of hCG on ID3 regulation. As well as documenting regulation patterns specific for ID1, ID2, ID3 and ID4, we have shown that IDs are located and differentially regulated in the human CL, suggesting a role in the transcriptional regulation of luteal cells during tissue and vascular remodelling.

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